Goat Experts - Buying Goat Advice Please


11 Years
Feb 4, 2008
Venice, Florida
Great news! I found a Florida Agriculture Marketplace with classifieds and found several potential goats that are the Saanen/Nubian cross and are does and are ages 1 and up. A couple are pregnant. Recently freshened. Easy milker.

What questions should I be asking so that I get a healthy goat?

I have phone #s and email addresses which I will be contacting and asking for pictures.

Any help, tips, would be most appreciated. I'll probably be going north for one and south for another but that's fine. I'm so excited that I may have found goats that are perfect for me and that I'll be able to get milk right away.


Also, how do I transport a goat?
backseat of car or truck

goodluck with goats, they are pains eat akot, and get sick even when you think they are alright the next day they dead
When you go looking at the goats and choosing one to bring home. Look at the eyes and teeth. Look at the udders. Look at the feet. Look at the overall general health. Ask about the health record. Most people have some record of what has gone on in the goats life.

Is the goat skittish? Does she let you handle her? How does she react if you reach down and touch her udders?

If the goat won't come up to you, if you can not pet and touch the uddders, look for another goat. Have them get her on a milking stand and see how she behaves.

It honestly is not worth the fight to have a goat that you can't handle.
Don't buy just one goat. A single, bored, and often stressed goat, because of lack of companionship is asking for trouble.

Look for any obvious cracking or chaffing of the teats and feel for hard spots along the teats that are an obvious sign of a bad milking technique and a sure sign of future problems.
I agree with the 2 above posts but also feel the udder for lumps and edema...also try to milk her yourself. Check the coat and see if it has missing hair in spots...sign of lice or mites...also check the teat size...that is important also as you really dont want what we call a 2 finger milker...hard to do. Just check her overall health...hopefully they have records on her and her recent shots too...and worming. I use Cydectin-pour on type orally. When I buy a new goat I keep it quarenteened for at least 30 days. just to be safe. Also is she CAE neg? thats important too its a type of contageous arthuritis...not good looks at her knees. make sure they arent swollen. Teeth are healthy too...check her from end to end. Dont jump on the first goat you see...go with your gut, it will tell you if you want it or not.
Except for Lacy, all great advice. Lacy? Pains? C'mon! Surely you jest.

I transport adult goats in a Great Dane size wire crate either in the back of my van or the bed of my truck (weather makes the final call). Baby goats travel in a smaller air crate, unless they're Starbucks - who got to ride to meet his new mom in my lap.
I actually hauled two 90 pound nannies in the back of a ford escort once. I let down the seats and put them in back and shut the doors. They crawled in trunk before I got a mile down the road. I do not suggest this. They should be hauled in crates especially if its an ornery billy. I second get more than one. I think two is ok three or more is better. If you have 3plus and lose one you don't have a lonely goat. I don't have alot of advice on how to make sure they are healthy. I basically don't buy if they are very dirty or don't look well fed. I do check there mouths to make sure they have no sores or blisters. I also make sure coat looks good. I make sure they walk/run well too. I am no expert by any means on goat health so I kind of wing it.
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All this talk of goats is makeing me want some I really would love to have two does and there is a seanna herd being sold but my mom said we don't have room and the neighbors wouldnt like it and what will we do when I go to college.
OK, Great. I've emailed the people with the ads and asked for pictures and more information. I will be waiting til after easter to get them.

There is

1) a 50/50 Nubian/Saanen doe, kids due soon in Volusia County.

2) a pregant nubian cross doe in Ft Myers

3) nubian/saanen cross kids born late 1/08

4) saanen/nubian cross doe freshened this month, very friendly, easy milker in Lake County

So if I get one from one place and one from another, would adjacent pens work to keep them quarantined or do I need 2 totally separate pens during quarantine. Providing they are healthy and of good temperment, #1, 2, and 4 have much appeal.

Can I get different aged goats? Like a pregnant doe and a kid? What does freshened mean?

I have a extra large dog crate (the largest I could find), 2 of them actually, so those in the back of the truck with tarps to keep the wind off. These dog crates are too long to fit in the back of the PT Cruiser. They just fit height wise, but the hatch would have to be tied down (how I brought the crates home). That would be a more comfortable ride though (less wind) for the goat.

Ideally, it would be nice to get 2 from the same place, but it seems that some people only have one for sale. The person in Volusia county has a nubian doe and a saanen doe and buck for sale also.
Freshened means she just kidded and is in milk now...yep getting 2 from the same place is wonderful if they like each other...some dont and dont get along is why they are selling them...watch that too...make sure they get along if they are sold together...If they are healthy I would put them both together and dip their feet in bleach water to disenfect them before letting them out in your pen...be safe...Also another thing I forgot is check to see if they have been trimmed lately ...you dont want a lame goat either. Wish you lived closer as I have some Nigi;s for sale...

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