"In the U.S. this breed is one of the best and preferred dairy goats mainly for their consistency in producing large amounts of milk in accordance with their sturdiness, easy keepability and ability to tolerate environmental changes."
The Saanen goat originated from Saanen Valley of Switzerland.
Saanen goat history
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This goat's origin is fascinating!
According to the Boer Goat Profits Guide, this breed finds its origin in the historic Saanenland region in Western Switzerland.
"They first arrived in America in 1904. A few prize heads were imported by way of Canada over a few years and these goats went to different farmers. Only a few of these goats were a prime example of the breed and as a result, a few lesser breeds developed. Many American farms began using these goats to breed and found that their milk was superior."
Did you know? They don't generally have horns!
- They have small-sized legs and a long-sized neck.
- Their whole body is covered with small-sized hair.
- They produce milk "highly" among all the dairy goat breeds.
- They can adapt in any region of the world but do best in cool climates.
- They love to stay under shade and can't tolerate sunlight highly.
This last point is the most important.
Their fair skin and hair means that they do not do well in hot climates. They are extremely sensitive to sunlight and will perform better in cooler climates.
What are they used for?
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Goat milk is delicious!
The Boer Goat Profits Guide calls this goat breed the best of the best.
"Their milk is used for the usual dairy products including milk, cheese, yoghurt, ice cream and sometimes even soap. Their milk is rich in nutrients and is known for having many health benefits. It has all the usual benefits of typical goat milk that has made the milk so popular. Goat milk is surprisingly close to human milk in its enzymatic composition which means that we get more out of it."
Caring for Saanen goats
These are rugged animals that have a lot of energy and need plenty of space to roam.
Saanens are white or light cream in color, with white preferred. With that in mind, don't forget that they need shade and excessive sunlight is not good for them.
The Toggenburg, Alpine, Nubian, Swiss, Capra and Lamancha goats are all popular dairy breeds that should also be considered if you're looking for high-quality milk.
When people think about dairy breeds, though, they typically think of the Saanen breed.
What is your fave goat breed? Please leave a comment below!