Shami Goat

Shami Goats Now an Endangered Species


The Damascus (Shami) goat is a strange-looking goat!

Used for both milk and meat, this is one of the rarest goat breeds in the world. The Damascus or Shami goat hails from Syria, as well as other Near Eastern countries. Goat milk in Damascus is particularly digestible and has become a popular choice for local cheese producers.

We think these goats are beautiful.

Shami goat history

According to, the Shami breed is considered one of the top five global breeds of goat that produce milk and give birth to twins.

"The breed used to be very widespread in Eastern al-Ghouta close to Damascus before the outbreak of the Syrian Revolution.

According to numerous studies, this breed has several distinguishing characteristics, such as its wide white eyes, the size and symmetry of its limbs and its color. The dark brown color (almost black) is predominant, a characteristic of 98 percent of the race."

Shami goats, already a rare breed, are now threatened by extinction. 


Goat World tells us the Shami goat is one that possesses a particularly aristocratic bearing, arresting beauty, great nobility and charisma, as well as a strong body structure, long legs and impressive height. 

  • Body condition: Body condition should be muscular and full, not too thin and not too fat. 
  • The head:

"The most recognizable characteristic of the breed. Convex (extreme Roman-nosed) in front, with upper and lower jaws meeting squarely and correctly. Goats with long, protruding lower jaws find it more difficult to nurse and graze; animals displaying this characteristic are less acceptable. Very long ears are placed at the upper part of the skull and fall downward at the sides of the head."

  • Eyes: Full of expression and with tight eyelids to protect the eye from dust and debris.
  • Bodyweight: 160-200 pounds
  • Main purpose: Mainly used for milk production
  • Common names: This breed of goat is also known as Aleppo, Baladi, Chami, Damascene, Halep or Shami
  • The milk of the Damascus goat is noted for being extremely easy to digest for anyone who may have issues digesting more normal dairy products.


    These goat breeds are from the middle east and in addition to milk production, they're also known for meat production. It is mainly raised in Cyprus, Lebanon and Syria.

    The Damascus goat was mentioned in many classics of Arabic literature. In fact, the breed appears in the religions and folklore of the region, too.


    Those ears! Oh my!

    Caring for Shami goats

    Shami goats are also known for their capacity to produce milk, as well as their ability to give birth twice a year (every five months) if they're kept in a suitable environment.

    He stressed the fact that goats need a quiet and clean environment, lots of forage (especially barley, which costs up to 500 Syrian pounds per kilo) and warm weather.

    What is your fave goat breed? Please leave a comment below! 


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