Dairy goats are strong, intelligent, calm, and sociable animals with a mind of their own. Dairy goats kept as hobby animals provide about one to two liters of milk per day. Goat’s milk contains smaller fat and protein particles than cow’s milk and is easily digestible.
This milk is also suitable for people with a cow’s milk allergy. The goat’s milk is used for drinking and for the preparation of food, butter, cheese, ice cream, and yogurt. Goat milk contains several vitamins and other important nutrients for the body.
Dairy goats are strong, intelligent, calm, sociable animals with a mind of their own. They are productive goats. On average, the goats live to be 8 to 12 years old. The goats have their fertile period from the end of summer to the beginning of winter. Fertility is seasonal and is determined by the amount of daylight and temperature. Ovulation takes place every 18 to 21 days and lasts from a few hours to a few days. After five months they give birth to an average of two lambs.
The Composition Of Goat’S Milk
Goat’s milk consists for the most part of water and about 13 percent of dry matter. The composition of the milk depends on the goat breed and depends on the season. In summer, milk yield is high and milk and protein levels are low. In winter, the milk yield is low and the milk and protein levels are high. Goat’s milk contains protein and meets the need for essential amino acids.
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Animo acids are the building blocks of all proteins. These are necessary for growth, muscle tissue, and organs. Essential amino acids cannot be produced by the body. The body must be supplied through the daily diet. Goat milk also contains calcium, vitamins A, D, B1, B2, B12, folic acid, and zinc. Goat’s milk contains more vitamins A and D than cow’s milk but less folic acid, B12, and zinc.
The Difference Between Goat’S Milk And Cow’S Milk
The fat and protein particles in goat’s milk are smaller than in cow’s milk and cream up less quickly. The small fat particles make the milk easy to digest and taste creamy. People with a cow’s milk allergy usually tolerate goat’s milk. Goat’s milk is whiter than cow’s milk. Cow’s milk contains the natural orange coloring carotene, which in goats is completely converted into vitamin A.
A goat gives about 1 to 2 liters of milk per day for its own use. This depends on the breed, diet, and the number of lactating lambs.
On average, a dairy goat has two lambs. These need full breast milk for the first few weeks. After three or four weeks, you can also milk for your own use. As long as the lambs are still drinking from their mother, they can be milked once a day.
Milking Young Goats
Milking goats does require some practice. Especially in goats that are being milked for the first time, the teats are small and it takes more effort to get milk out. These goats also have to get used to milking. You can get them used to this by stroking the belly every day before they have lambs.
Milk every day at the same time in the morning or evening and keep in mind that the fry also needs milk. The goat now needs more food and can eat unlimited grass (preferably grassland with a varied range of plants) or good-quality hay. This can be supplemented by giving stale bread, oats, and corn. Also, give the goat a mineral lick. Change the water daily.
A goat will avoid unsatisfactory food. They have a very sensitive stomach so dietary changes should be made very gradually. After 10 to 12 weeks, the young can leave the mother. After birth, the goat gives milk for 10 months and then needs two months to regain strength before the next young are born. Milk production decreases automatically.
Fresh, raw, and clean (be hygienic when milking) milk can be stored in the refrigerator for four to five days. Goat’s milk can also be frozen. The milk is used for drinking, food preparation, butter, cheese, ice cream, and yogurt.