20 Different Types of Goat Breeds

Different Types of Goat Breeds
Photo by Jet Stouten

In the world of animal farming, goats are a significant and versatile source of milk, cheese, meat, and wool. For a good reason, goats are one of the most popular farm animals!

They’re hardy and versatile, providing milk, meat, fiber, and mohair (soft wool used in clothing and crafting). 

They’re also one of the most popular pets and can be kept by experienced and inexperienced goat owners.

Before you pick out your new Goat pet or begin Goat farming on your own, it’s essential to familiarize yourself with the different types of Goat breeds available today.

This comprehensive guide will help you do just that!

1. Oberhasli

The Oberhasli is a small to medium-sized dairy goat breed from the Oberhasli district in the Canton of Bern, Switzerland. The Oberhasli is one of the most popular dairy goat breeds in the United States. 

These different types of Goat breeds are known for their excellent milk production and docile dispositions. Some notable characteristics of the Oberhasli include their chocolate brown coloration with black markings.

2. Saanen

The Saanen goat is a popular dairy breed from the Saanen Valley in Switzerland. They are white with long, erect ears and are considered very docile. 

Saanens are excellent milk producers, with some producing over 3 gallons per day. Because of their high milk production, they are often used in crossbreeding programs to improve the milk production of other breeds.

3. Kalahari Red Goat

The Kalahari Red Goat is a hardy, well-muscled animal that is well-suited for meat production. These different types of Goat breeds are relatively new breeds, developed in South Africa in the 1970s.

Kalahari Reds are large goats, with bucks weighing up to 250 pounds and does up to 200 pounds. 

Their coat is short and reddish-brown, with a light-colored mane and tail. The Kalahari Red is adaptable and can thrive in various climates and conditions.

4. Cashmere goats

Different fiber goats, including the Cashmere goat, Angora goat, and Pygora goat, are bred for their soft, downy cashmere wool, which is used in high-end garments.

Angora goats produce mohair, a lustrous, durable fiber often used in sweaters and other garments. Pygora goats are a cross between an Angora and a Pygmy goat, and they produce a soft yarn that can be used in various applications.

5. Sable Goat

The Sable goat is a variety of domestic goats originating from South Africa. It is one of the giant goat breeds, with does (females) weighing up to 250 pounds (110 kg) and bucks (males) up to 350 pounds (160 kg). Sable goats are black with white markings on their legs, faces, and bellies. 

They are known for their hardiness and ability to thrive in harsh conditions. Another breed, Kiko Goat originated in New Zealand; these different types of goat breeds can be white or brown and may have horns or be polled (hornless).

Kiko Goats are also large animals but not as heavy as the Sable Goats at about 200-250 pounds for does and about 300-350 pounds for bucks.

6. Rangeland Goat

The Rangeland goat is a versatile and adaptable animal, making it a popular choice for many different types of operations.

They are well-suited for harsh conditions and can thrive on various feeds. Rangeland goats come in many different colors, most commonly black or white. 

Two breeds fall under the category of Rangeland goats; Spanish Ranchers and White Spotted Angoras. An excellent choice for newbie farmers and long-time veterans, these different types of Goat breeds were developed by crossbreeding Saanen and Nigerian Dwarf goats.

Toggenburgs are medium-sized animals with white faces, ears, feet, tail tips, and stomachs (except the head, which is solid black). Their coat ranges from short hair in the summer to heavy fleece in the winter. Their average weight at matuvariesanges from 80lbs – 150lbs.

7. Alpine Goat

The Alpine goat is a medium-to-large breed popular for dairy and meat production. They are a hardy breed that does well in colder climates and can be found in many different colors. Some standard Alpine goat colors include white, black, brown, and gray. 

Alpine goats are known for being good milkers with high butterfat content in their milk. They are also known for being gentle and easy to handle, making them a good choice for those new to goat ownership.

8. Toggenburg Goat

The Toggenburg is a Swiss dairy goat first bred in the Toggenburg Valley of Switzerland. The Toggenburg is one of the world’s oldest and most popular dairy goat breeds.

These different types of goat breeds were brought to America in 1904 and have been used extensively in developing other dairy goat breeds. 

The Toggenburg is a medium-sized goat with a compact body and short, erect ears. The coat is usually brown or fawn with white markings on the face, legs, and underbelly. Toggenburg goats are known for their high milk production and excellent milk quality.

9. Nubian Goat

The Nubian goat is a popular breed of dairy goat, originally from the Middle East and North Africa. Nubian goats are known for their large, floppy ears and long, curved horns. 

They are also known for their high milk production; Nubian goats can be either black, brown, or white.

Other different types of Goat breeds produce as much milk as a Nubian, but they do not have the sweet temperament and produce less butterfat than a Nubian. They are often kept primarily for meat production instead of milking.

10. Verata Goat

The Verata Goat is a popular breed known for its milk production. These different types of Goat breeds are very hardy and can adapt to different types of climates, and they are also very resistant to diseases. The Verata Goat is a dual-purpose breed that can be used for milk and meat production.

11. Myotonic Goat

Also called the Tennessee fainting goat, this breed is characterized by myotonia congenita, which causes the muscles to stiffen when the goat is startled. Myotonic goats come in various colors: black, brown, red, and white.

They’re typically smaller than other breeds, weighing around 120 pounds and bucks around 150 pounds. Myotonic goats are suitable for meat and milk production. These different types of Goat breeds are also popular as pets and show animals.

12. Spanish Goat

The Spanish goat is a breed of dairy goat that originated in Spain and is one of the world’s oldest and most popular dairy goat breeds. The Spanish Goat is a medium-sized breed with a compact body and short, erect ears. 

They are available in various colors, but black, brown, and white are the most common. Spanish Goats are known for their high milk production and good milk quality, and they are also known for their friendly and docile nature.

13. Saanen Goat

The Saanen goat is a popular dairy breed that originated in Switzerland. They are all white and have long, slender bodies with upright ears.

These different types of Goat breeds are known for being gentle and docile, making them easy to handle. 

They’re also very productive, averaging 2-3 gallons of milk daily. The Saanen is an excellent choice if you’re looking for a high-quality dairy goat.

14. Sable Goat

The Sable Goat is a variety of Capra hircus, a domesticated wild goat subspecies. Sable Goats are characterized by their black and brown fur, native to Africa and the Middle East. 

Sable Goats are kept as livestock for their meat and milk and are also used for their hide, which is made into leather.

15. Boer Goat

The Boer goat is a South African breed developed in the early 1900s. These different types of goat breeds are large and muscular, with brown and white markings. 

Boer goats are known for their high-quality meat, which is why they’re often used in commercial operations. However, they can also make great pets! If you’re considering a Boer goat, carefully research the care requirements.

16. Nigerian Dwarf Goat

The Nigerian Dwarf goat is a miniature dairy goat breed that originates from West Africa. They are known for their high milk production, despite their small size. 

Nigerian Dwarf goats come in various colors, including black, red, and white. Some Nigerian Dwarf goats even have blue eyes! If you’re looking for a small, friendly goat breed, the Nigerian Dwarf is a great choice.

17. Kalahari Red Goat

The Kalahari Red Goat is a beautiful, hardy breed perfect for any climate. They are known for their red coats, which can range in color from light red to dark chocolate brown. These different types of goat breeds are also very intelligent and easy to train, making great herd animals.

18. Black Bengal Goat

The Black Bengal goat is a variety of domestic goats found in Bangladesh, India, and Nepal. It is a cross between the Jamunapari and the black Bengal. 

The Black Bengal goat is mainly used for meat production but can also be used for milk production. It is a hardy breed that can withstand harsh conditions and still produce high-quality meat and milk.

19. Angora Goat

The Angora goat is a variety of domestic goats known for its long, lustrous fiber called mohair. Angora goats are considered one of the oldest domesticated livestock animals, with records dating back as early as the 16th century. 

While they were initially bred in Turkey, today, Angora goats can be found worldwide; thanks to their valuable mohair, these goats are raised primarily for their fiber production. However, they can also be kept as pets or used for milk production.

20. Savanna Goat

The Savanna goat is a unique breed that is perfect for those looking for something a little different. These different types of goat breeds are known for their striking appearance, with black and white markings that make them stand out from the crowd. 

But they’re not just pretty to look at – Savanna goats are also hardy and adaptable, able to thrive in various climates and environments. The Savanna goat is perfect if you’re looking for a beautiful and challenging goat.

Conclusion

Goats are relatively easy and inexpensive animals to keep, and they can provide you with milk, cheese, fiber, and even meat. Plus, they’re good for clearing brush and weeds. 

If you’re thinking about adding goats to your farm or homestead, there are many different types of goat breeds to choose from. I hope these 20 varieties of different types of goat breeds, along with a brief description of each.

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