Myotonic Goat Examples ~ The Good and the Bad

This is a compilation of photos from many knowledgeable Myotonic goat breeders. Each photo is owned by the person who took the photo, so please do NOT use these photos on your own website, or social media without permission.

These photos are for educational purposes only. It’s important to keep in mind some of the abnormal body structures below are caused by vitamin or mineral deficiencies and a few may be corrected by proper feeding and management.

Correct Head (front profile)
doe head

Incorrect Head (front profile)
incorrect face1 incorrect face2

Correct Face (side profile)
Coming Soon!

Face Too Straight/Pointy Muzzle
incorrect head

Face Too Convex (Roman nose)
OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

Correct Muscle Mass
buck good muscle

Poor Muscle Definition
poor muscle

Overly Conditioned (aka overweight)
Coming Soon!

Correct Legs (front view)
straight legs

Crooked Legs

crookedleg
Legs angle out to the sides instead of straight up and down when viewed from the front.

 

Correct Legs (side view)
correct legs

Posty Legs

postygoat
Rear legs are too straight up and down when viewed from the side.

 

Leg Diagram (to help with pictures below)
leg diagram rff

 

Correct Hocks
normalhocks

Cow Hocked

cowhocked
Hocks are angled in and toes pointed out.

 

Correct Front Pasterns
correct front pasterns2

Down in Front Pasterns (aka Weak Pasterns)
down front pasterns

Correct Rear Pasterns
normalpasterns

 

Down in Rear Pasterns (aka Weak Pasterns)
down rear pasterns

 

Correct Topline
straight topline


Swayback

uneven back
This doe is too straight in the back legs as well as having the dip in her back.

 

Correct Ears -there are slight variations in Myotonic ears. Some have a slight ripple while others don’t, so I’ve included examples of both in bucks and does.
Another thing to keep in mind about ears is they can change quite a bit as a goat grows. A kid with slightly droopy ears will likely be an adult with very droopy ears, whereas a kid with very erect ears will usually be an adult with slightly erect ears. This has been my experience.
buck ears correct ears3

correct ears1 correct ears4

Ears Too Erect
ears too erect

Ears Too Small/Short
Small Ears

Ears Too Drooping

These ears are too wide in the middle and are hanging down.
These ears are too wide in the middle and are hanging down.

 

drooping ears
These ears droop and somewhat impede the goat’s vision.

 

 

Normal Scrotum
normal scrotum

Split Scrotum
splitscrotum

Normal Udder (smaller, more tight to the body is also normal)
norm udder

Pendulous Udder

Normal Teats
normalteat

Double Teats (4 teats)
extrateats

Split Teats
splitteat

It’s important to take into consideration a goat needs a good frame/structure to be able to produce and nurse kids each year as well as forage and for food. Please breed for the more important structure first before worrying about minor things such as coat color, pattern, horn type, eye color, etc.

PS: I’d love to be able to add these photos to this list:
-down in pasterns
-down in fetlocks
-underbite
-overbite
-anything else you might have a picture of that would be appropriate for this page.
Feel free to e-mail your photos for consideration to: goatspots@gmail.com

Top 5 Common Goat Myths

Here are the top 5 goats myths most people believe are true.

#1 Goats will eat anything, including tin cans.

Goats can actually be pretty picky about what they eat.  They turn their noses up at trampled or dirty hay that most livestock wouldn’t think twice about eating. It’s true that goats will often nibble or mouth at things that are new to them (horses will often do the same). I guess if they came across a tin can they might nibble at it and possibly eat the paper label, but they certainly aren’t going to eat the can itself.

buck-rodeo
An adult buck (non-castrated male)

#2 All goats stink.

It’s only the bucks (non-castrated male goats) who have an odor, and then it’s mostly during breeding season. For most areas, breeding season is in the fall. Does (females) and wethers (castrated males) generally have no noticeable odor at all. It’s for this reason a buck should never be sold as a pet.

#3 All goats with horns are males.

Both male AND female goats can have horns. A buck’s horns will grow much thicker and longer than a doe’s horns, so the goats with the HUGE horns are typically male. Most dairy goat breeders will do a procedure called “disbudding” to prevent the horns from growing on their goats, but they generally do this to both the males and females. Some goats are born “polled”, or naturally hornless, and can be male or female.

polled-horned
Polled female in front of a horned female.

#4 All goats with goatees are males.

Female goats can have a beard too!  Most of our does over 3 years old have a goatee.  Bucks will have a much thicker and longer goatee than the does.

#5 Goats are like lawnmowers and will cut your grass.

Anyone telling this myth has obviously NEVER owned a goat.  🙂 Goats are browsers like deer, not grazers like sheep. I tell people all the time that if they put a goat in the backyard it will eat all the bushes, ornamental plants and anything other than grass first.  Only once those are gone will it finely resign itself to eat the grass simply because there’s nothing tastier left.

So, now that you know these are myths, let’s start spreading some TRUTH about goats.  🙂

polled-female-with-goatee
Polled doe with goatee

Kids with Faster Growth Rate

paintball-front
Fastest growing buck – R Fainting Paintball

I’m always striving to breed kids with a faster growth rate without sacrificing conformation or muscling to get there.  It’s been a long struggle to get the faster growth rate since the Myotonic breed as a whole has a slower growth rate than most goats.  Our buck Hummer had the fastest growth rate of all kids in his age group on the farm where he was born down in Florida.  As a general rule Hummer’s kids have been some of our fastest growing kids.

This year, however, our fastest growing kids have come from a variety of genetics with little influence from Hummer.  It’s been quite surprising, but I’m also thrilled with these results.  For our kids born Jan – Feb 2012 below is a list of the top growing bucks & does.  Being from a single or multiple birth was also calculated.

Bucks with the highest growth rate (in order):

  1. Paintball
  2. Spy
  3. Heart Stealer
  4. Diamond Miner
  5. Obi-Wan
tapdancer-rt-2.12
Fastest growing doe – R Fainting Tap Dancer

Does with the highest growth rate (in order):

  1. Tap Dancer
  2. Tropical Smoothie
  3. Party Time
  4. Padme
  5. Sunshine

 

Kidding Season is Here!

BuggyKidding season has finally arrived.  The last month or so before the kids arrive always seems to take forever, but thankfully Christmas and New Years were able to distract me for a while.  This kidding season we have 20 does bred, most are due the week of January 19th, but we have a couple due in February and March as well.

The does scheduled to kid mid January (not in any particular order) are:

Cherry, Showbiz, Frostie, Lazy Daisy, Nutmeg, Melody, Guinevere, Poke-a-dot, Snickerdoodle, Red Socks, Katara, Charmed One, Surprise, Confetti, Classy, and Diamond.

The does due in Feb. & March are:
Jersey, Buggy (pictured at right), Perfection, and Mona Lisa.

We used 6 different bucks for breeding: Hummer, Rocketman, Dream Chaser, Flash Gordon, Mountain Ghost & Fox in Socks.  We use the pen-breeding method, where we put a buck with 5-6 does and leave them together for a length of time.  It takes a lot of time and effort to move bucks and does around to different pens when all the does are going in heat around the same time, but I think we did much better this year with getting all of our does bred around the same time.  Last year we had does kidding off and on for over 6 months.