Monday, January 4, 2010

Goat Health Stats

Rectal temperature: 101.5* - 103.5* F
Heart rate: 60 – 90 beats per minute
Respiration: 15 – 30 breaths per minute
Rumen movements: 1 – 2 per minute
Estrous cycle: - 21 days
Heat cycle: 12 – 36 hours
Gestation: 148 - 153 days (average 150 days)
Sexual maturity: 3 - 5 months/4-7 months
(This is an AVERAGE and not something that EVERY goat will do. Being an average, some precocious and lucky little bucks have been known to bred their dam even at 6 weeks (RARE thank heavens) or 2 months! Some places you'll see this as 4-7 months. The crucial thing is to know SOME are lucky enough to pull this off mighty early and some won't be ready to "get the job done" until even 7-9 months. They get more skillful and coordinated as they age so attempts to perform improve as their body and confidence develop.)


  1. Good information for a "newbie" with goats like me!

    What age do you suggest breeding? I know a lot of folks breed early but I have held off breeding my two for now. I will probably breed them next fall (they will be around 18 months old) for spring kids.

  2. Hi Tammy! You're most welcome. It's sure a handy thing to run across now and then.

    What age to breed is sure something that varies from person to person. I try to not let age be the major factor, but rather the physical maturity and mental maturity for my primary considerations. I want to make sure to the best of my ability that my animals can deliver their offspring with the least amount of problem possible. That can vary by breed and even by bloodlines IMO. Some animals are quick maturing and others slow. About 10 months seems to end up as the early end when I breed my goats and I have 3 who are pushing a year old that I'm holding off on as they just aren't as big as I'd like yet. I don't want to have c-sections because I was in a human hurry and the goat needs more time. I've always wanted to make sure that any of my animals can have a long and successful reproductive life too. I hate to push them too much and "use them up" at a young age. I'd rather give them the time they need to be mature enough early on. I don't have a problem with giving an animal a year off if they need it too. With dairy goats it great if they can milk thru and still be productive milk-wise too. It's too cold here to milk thru (for me;). I'm not a commercial breeder so I know my opinion doesn't meet their bottom line for a business income though. ;)

  3. Thank you so much! I really appreciate your insight!

  4. You're welcome! That's a topic we all ponder on and ask about. It's one that always grabs my attention to take time to read too!