Best Types of Goats
for Dairy Goats

Usually the best types of goats for high milk production are the Saanen and Alpine goats.  However, the LaMancha, Toggenburg, and Oberhasli goats can also produce a lot of milk.  And the Nubian, LaMancha, Alpine, Saanen, and Nigerian dwarf goats are known to be able to adapt to a number of climates because of their hardy natures. 

If you're looking for a pet goat with a really high butterfat content, the Nigerian dwarf produces some of the best tasting goat milk.  My second favorite goat, is the LaMancha which is a lot easier to milk than a Nigerian dwarf!  So far, I've milked a Nubian, Nigerian dwarfs, and LaManchas.

What's the Best Dairy Goat for You?

Types of Goats - Oberhasli Goats

Oberhasli goats are a medium sized American goat breed and are generally a short haired type of goat.  This goat is a descendant from a goat breed that was brought over from Switzerland over a hundred years ago.

Oberhasli goats have high milk production abilities and produce 1/2 to 1 1/2 gallons of milk per day.  They also produce milk with a good butterfat content of 3.5 to 4%.  And these goats produce a more sweet tasting milk that's similar to cow's milk.  Oberhasli goats also have a quiet and sweet natured temperament. 

It's also a hardy and thrifty goat that doesn't mind the cold weather.  They are known for their warm reddish brown color with black markings and you can also find an occasional black Oberhasli doe.

Types of Goats - Saanen Goats

Saanen goats are a Swiss breed of goat and are the largest of the dairy goat breeds.  They are a short haired goat and are generally white in color or biscuit colored.

Saanen goats are known for their odor-free high milk production.  This goat holds the record in milk production and is commonly used in commercial dairies.  They typically produce about 1 1/2 to 2 gallons of milk per day (sometimes more) with a lower butterfat content in the range of 2 to 3.5%.

Saanens are known for being a calm and sweet mannered goat. They are also hardy goats that are capable of adapting to most climates, as long as there is adequate shade. 

Types of Goats - Nubian Goats

Nubian goats are a large goat breed that is considered a dual purpose goat.  Nubians are a more fleshy type of goat and are also used for meat.

This goat was developed in England, but its origins are in the Middle East and North Africa.  It may also be the most common goat breed in America.

Nubian goats are distinguished by their long floppy ears and roman nose.  Compared to other breeds, they are somewhat of a loud and vocal goat.  They can have strong personalities and can be very stubborn.  They also love attention and being petted.

However, they are not the best milk producers and average 1/2 to 1 gallon of milk per day.  Although, their milk comes with a high butterfat content of 4 to 5%. 

Nubian goats can live in most climates and can withstand very hot temperatures.  They have a longer breeding season than other dairy goats and come in various colors as well as markings.  And generally have short hair.

Types of Goats - LaMancha Goats

The LaMancha goat is a medium sized goat with short hair.  This goat has an obscure history and may go as far back as ancient Persia.  However, this goat was developed in America and is actually considered an American breed of goat. 

The LaMancha goat is distinguished by a lack of external ears or for having very small ears.  The LaMancha produces a high protein milk with a butterfat content of up to 3.9%.  This goat has a good to high milk production and can produce anywhere from 1 to 1 1/2 gallons of milk per day.  LaManchas can also be milked for two years without freshening or having any kids.

This type of goat has an excellent dairy temperament.  It's also a calm and sturdy breed of goat.  And LaManchas can adapt to a number of different climates.  They make a good 4H goat or pet because of their gentle and quiet nature. 

Types of Goats - Alpine Goats

The Alpine goat is a medium to large sized goat and has medium to short hair.  It's distinguished by its upright ears and roman nose.  This goat originates from the French Alps and is known for its great milk production.   Alpines are commonly used commercially.

Alpines generally produce 2 gallons of milk per day with a butterfat content of 3.5%.  And they have one of the longest lactation cycles.  This goat is the most common farm animal found around the world.

Alpine goats can be very independent, are friendly, and are very dependable.  They are also a hardy and adaptable breed that can thrive in any climate.  And they come in any color or any combination of colors.

Types of Goats - Toggenburg Goats

Toggenburg goats are a Swiss breed of goat and the oldest known dairy goat.  They are a medium sized goat with short to medium hair and have a deer-like appearance.  This goat is a dual-purpose goat and can also be used for meat.

Toggenburg goats are known for their excellent udder development and for their milk production.  They produce 1 to 1 1/2 gallons of milk per day with a butterfat content of 3 to 3.5%.

Toggenburgs are a sturdy and robust goat which does best in cooler climates.  And they make a great pet because they are docile, curious, graceful, and sensitive goats.  Their color ranges from a light to dark brown color with distinctive white markings.

Types of Goats - Nigerian Dwarf Goats

Nigerian dwarf goats and pygmy goats are a miniature or small goat breed.  However, Nigerian goats are the better goat for dairy as pygmy goats have smaller teats and udders.  This goat has short to medium hair and has an African origin.

For its size, the Nigerian dwarf goats produce a fairly high amount of goat milk.  They can produce about 1 to 2 quarts of milk per day with a very high butterfat content of 6 to 10%.  And I absolutely loved the taste of this goat milk!

This goat breeds year-round and can thrive in almost any climate.  Nigerian dwarf goats are lovable, gentle, easy to maintain, and easily trained.  They can make great pets and come in many colors as well as patterns.  

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