Beginner Nigerian Dwarf Owner Questions

Discussion in 'Forum Announcements & Help' started by Kenny Battistelli, Nov 29, 2020.

  1. Kenny Battistelli

    Kenny Battistelli New Member

    I have two Nigerian dwarf goats. How do I know if they like me? They run towards me when because they think that I always have food on me. They don’t like me handling them and are sometimes shy around me. How do I bond with them?
  2. john vogel

    john vogel New Member

    Hi, I have 6 goats and initially I was only able to scratch one goat between his horns. After 6 months, I am able to pet their faces, scratch their ears, scratch their bellies and backs. Here is what i did... Knowing that the one goat liked to be scratched between his horns, I attempted to scratch the same spot on all 6 goats; eventually they all came up to me for scratching. Once they all let me scratch their special spot, I started making a point to touch then all over, while feeding them and giving treats. Eventually i was able to bond with the goats and now they hang out, while I clean their stalls, asking for or gently nibbling me for me to pay attention to them; often times I have four goats around me while I sing a morning song about what good goats they are while I pet each one in turn. Good luck, it takes time and patience, but is totally worth it. BTW, goats are very gentle (watch how they nuzzle each other at night), as such I have migrated from rough scratching to very gently cheek rubbing and ear scratching; they seem to love a gentle touch. Good luck :)

  3. Victoria99

    Victoria99 New Member

    How long have you had them. Stop getting a complex. They are animals. Don't get me wrong I love mine to pieces but they can be sh&* heads at times. I have one that I bought at 1 1/2 years old and I had to chase her down every time I wanted to milk her or do anything to her. For almost 2 years, it was getting really old. Now she is one of the first to come see me and follows me around. I have another that I bought as a baby and she has for the most part been good, but some days I call to her and she blows me off, not to often but sometimes. Than another one was born here and she really hasn't cared for me since day one. But I loved her mother so I kept her, because of that bond. Lost her mother in 2018, so I kept her in memory of her mother. It has just been the last year that she is accepting me, but she is still having an issue with me touching the boobs. I can love on her, pet her, grab her feet, tail, ears....all is well go for the udder and I get snorted at and she starts stomping. Some of my girls will get on the milk stand and wait for me to "do my thing" others you can't get near the stand much less milk them without a fight. Another one, it's a fight to get her to the stand. Once on, she patiently waits for me to get done with her. Then I have to nudge her to get off.

    If you only have the 2 goats, that may be part of the problem. 2 isn't a herd, yet. There isn't the competition for attention, herd dominance and "acceptance" from others in the herd. Since there are only 2, they rely on each other for companionship and such. When you come out and spend time with them, you leave and they go back to just having each other. I notice that with mine. They break up into family groups for different things. If it is sleeping or just hanging out. I notice the mamas are with their babies. It doesn't matter if kids are 2,3, or 4, All of her kids are with her. But if they are playing or go out to eat: The older mamas go out together, then the 1st and 2nd fresheners, then the older kids. The younger kids and newer babies are usually left with one or two of the younger mamas, with an older mama coming by to check on things every once in a while.

    There is a head of the herd and she is the Queen, then a second in command (sort of). Some herds will always have this fight for dominance others not so much. Mine only seems to do the nasty head butting thing around breeding season or if a doe is feeling threatened when she has new babies. Other than that they get along pretty well. One small head wack now and then, but not the getting up on the hind legs and knocking the crap out of each other. It is amazing how much affection a goat will show you if they think three or four others might be getting something they are not. When we are loving on the babies, the mamas will come over to see what is up. When we are loving on the older mamas, the teenagers come up to see what they are missing. At times, just having 2 is harder. If they don't want to see you, they can just walk away. But it is VERY hard for a goat to ignore ANYTHING, especially when several other goats are interested in said object. Even if that object is YOU. Goats are snoopy. They have to see what is going on and know everything.

    One thing else that may help with the bonding is kidding. My does are much closer to me now that they have kidded. One doe doesn't want to have anything to do with me until 1 week before she kids. Then it's a love affair, until 6 months of milking, then the romance is gone again. I think she gets tired of being milked. She is a wonderful mother and a great milker. Also, bottle feeding a baby will help with the bonding. That baby bonds with you the others may follow suit.

    If they are bucks, some are friendly some are not. I have one that is a real pain in the ass. Always under foot - too friendly. The other buck freaks out every time I grab him. I find the wethers to be the most even tempered. Probably because the hormones aren't surging through their bodies like everybody else.

    They are animals like I said. Some people like to think of them with a broad stroke of the brush. They are just goats. Well goats have their individual personalities too. Anyone who has really been around them knows that they are not "just goats". Some are shy, some outgoing, quiet, mischievous, clingy, mouthy, talkers, climbers, diggers, get board easily, others entertain themselves (and you) for hours. The 2 may rely on each other so much that they don't know what to do with a third member in their "family". They may feel the same way about another goat as they are acting toward you. I have had other people tell me that about their goat when it was only around horses, chickens, dogs and such. The poor goat didn't know how to be a goat. Now here you are this funny looking goat trying to come in and be a part of this 2 goat family. If there were a lot of other goats one more may be no big deal, but this might be for them. Wait and see what happens when they start kidding or you add more goats to the farm. Things may change.