SOME GUIDELINES FOR FIRST TIME BUYERS
Firstly, do not be tempted to buy ‘on impulse’ for whatever reason ! Begin by researching the correct care of pygmy goats to ensure that you can provide suitable accommodation etc For information on care and management purchase a copy of the Pygmy Goat booklet and/or DVD before proceeding with any purchase. Remember that pygmy goats may live for 12 -15 years of age or more and are therefore a long term commitment.
Decide whether you are interested in keeping purely pet pygmies or perhaps might want to breed at a later date. Might you want to exhibit your goats ?. It is essential that you inform the breeder -at the initial stage of enquiry -of what your requirements are to avoid disappointment at a later date. Arrange to visit several breeders before making a final decision on where to buy from.
Are you happy with the condition of the adult goats, do they appear to be healthy and kept in a clean environment ? Ask whether their goats are regularly de-wormed and vaccinated. Does the breeder answer all your questions and give you all the necessary information ?
MOST IMPORTANTLY – Never buy a single goat. Goats are ‘herd’ animals and must have company of their own kind. A single, lonely goat will be noisy and unhappy.
Pygmy goat kids should be at least 12 weeks old before leaving their mother. Do not agree to collect kids until they reach this age. Check that they have been de-wormed and vaccinated. Ask the breeder to give you a demonstration of foot trimming. This will be invaluable to you when you need to perform this yourself (roughly every 4-6 weeks) If you are purchasing future breeding stock MAKE SURE that they are (or will shortly be) registered with the Pygmy Goat Club. Ask the breeder/seller to show you the relevant registration certificates.
You will never be able to register offspring from unregistered parents. DO NOT consider buying an ‘entire’ (un-castrated) male unless you have at least 5/6 females and a long-term breeding plan ! Entire males are not suitable as pets. If you want pet pygmy goats and are not interested in breeding then you should opt for wethers (castrated males) Finally you should be fully aware of the legal requirements of owning goats. Before buying you must register a Holding Number with DEFRA. By law all goats must be ear-tagged before being moved to a new holding. The Pygmy Goat Club has a list of Regional Advisors who are there to give advice on buying and all aspects of keeping Pygmy Goats. If you have any questions and cannot find the answer on this website please ASK !