Q: I just bought a goat. When can I start milking her?
A: A female goat (doe), like all mammals, must be bred, and have babies (kids), to begin lactation. A doe produces milk for the sole purpose of feeding her young.
Q: When can I expect my doe to come into heat so she can be bred?
A: Most dairy goats are seasonal breeders, like deer, and have a definite breeding season. It’s usually from Aug. to Dec/Jan. The doe will come into heat every 21 days until bred. The male goat (buck) will stay in rut during the entire breeding season. Once the buck goes out of rut, they loose most of their interest in breeding until the next rut.
Q: How long is a goat’s pregnancy/gestation period?
A: A doe normally gives birth between 145 – 155 days (about 5 months) after conception.
Q: What’s an UDDER?
A: The proper term for a goat’s mammary glands is called her “udder”. The whole organ is called the udder. A goat has ONE udder; they do not have “udders”.
Q: What’s a teat?
A: That’s the appendage protruding from each side of the udder that you squeeze to get the milk to come out. Teats can be all shapes and sizes.