We’re NOT Fat

People not used to goats sometimes look at my boys and ask some rather… ahem… insensitive questions.

Are they supposed to be that big?
Actually, no, they’re supposed to be miniature goats. Somehow, despite the fact that their parents were truly small, they grew taller than the expected twenty or so inches.

They’re rather wide aren’t they?
Yes, they are. Goats have expandable bellies – four stomachs! – and they eat bulky food, so depending on the time of day, they look like overinflated beach balls.

Are they fat?
This question I do worry about. Caper has a bone chip in his right foreleg. Carrying excess weight can exacerbate his lameness. Carrying excess weight isn’t good for many health reasons. This past week, Dr. Sarah came to give the goats their spring shots, so I asked her about their condition. She said, The goats are NOT fat.

The goats say, Told you so. More hay, please.



  1. I loved your lap goat video. Clearly, Pip and Caper have a great life….kind caretakers; great food; warm, dry, and clean accommodations; some mental stimulation and enrichment; and each other for company. I fostered some baby dwarf goats many years ago and was astounded at how affectionate they are. Complete cuddle muffins. The dwarf female (very young) had been handled very roughly by her previous owner, was very fearful and nervous, but as soon as she figured out I would always be gentle and very predictable with her, all she wanted was to sit in my lap and cuddle. For hours and hours. I finally moved an Adirondack chair out there and would sit with her folded on my lap for a solid hour every morning while I drank my morning cup of tea. She wouldn’t budge. I think it was the only time she felt safe. Eventually, I was able to wean her very slowly down to less concentrated one-on-one time and as she grew up and the abuse stressors were no longer part of her day, she became a very well adjusted little goatie, sweet as pie.

    They’re fantastic pets, as long as you’re prepared for the custodial care required and know how smart, curious and in need of mental enrichment they are. They have an incredible sense of humor. I finally homed the little girl with a woman who had a very fancy Greenwich, CT mansion but adored her animals. Little ‘Button’ ended up having free range of this woman’s Architectural Digest country kitchen as well as access to her own barn and paddock via a dog door, and spent many afternoons in a dog bed gently gnawing on the ears of their very patient Golden Retriever, by the AGA cooker in their farm-style kitchen.

  2. Nice picture. I was wondering about that, if pygmy goats were really that big!!!

    • The boys are Nigerian Dwarf Dairy Goats, not pygmies. Though both are small, one is a dairy breed and the other best suited for petting zoos, being as they are quite stout and tough.

  3. I have to ask what type of shots to goats get?

    We had wether’s growing up to keep the brush at bay but nary a vet they saw.

  4. Four stomachs…….how wonderful! In our family, we all have two. One for regular food and then there is our desert stomach. :)

  5. Finally saw a goat head sticking out of the barn from the HenCam. It has been weeks and weeks, so happy to see the boys again. Know you are even happier to see the snow going away.
    Happy St Pats Day!

  6. How insensitive cover their ears !! They are adorable, a little rounded or rotund maybe but that means more to love ! :)

  7. They are so cute! I cannot think of even one time when I saw them or read about them that I didn’t smile! So much personality.

  8. They need t-shirts like the very large man I saw in the supermarket this morning. The shirt said ‘Tell Your Kid To Stop Staring’.
    Your boys are goofy and delightful and it’s nice to see their heads above the snow finally.

  9. Just looked in at the goat-cam and there were the boys having a head butting match. They moved outside and there was much rearing up and coming down head to head. With the temp up to 50 they seem to be celebrating spring. Obviously having a VERY good time!!!

  10. Just been watching the Boys go head to head, Pip won’t let Caper into the barn :)

  11. The Girls love their fresh bedding, nice collection of eggs from the Gems :)

  12. Such sweet boys! You’re lucky to have them. (They were a no show for me on goat cam. *sigh*)

    I felt a little voyeuristic today on Hencam. When I first got here the ladies were all pushing and shoving to go in and I hit the inside cam to see what that was all about and there you were, scooping poop out of the dust bin! They certainly love that Koop Clean! And then when I made it to barn cam, there you were again! Taking pictures. You should stick your tongue out at the camera one day just to see how many people catch you doing it. :D

    • Ha! I had a similar thought, only instead of making a face at the camera, somebody should calmly walk by, wearing a chicken costume…

  13. Terry do you sterilise their outside run with anything after you clean all the mud and muck away later ??

    • Not possible or advisable to disinfect ground. There’s a lot of good microbes in there as well as the bad. But, it is important to remove the manure and to keep things dry, which will be a mighty challenge this mud season.

  14. Goat boys know best! I like my dessert stomach…I don’t know what I’d do with 4! Maybe appetizer, salad, entree, and dessert, yum!

  15. I am often asked if my mare is “having a baby”. She is not a tall mare, so she looks rather “stout”, and she does like her food. I have to monitor it or she does look “swollen”….LOL….

  16. Just purchased two chicks with my granddaughters. I live in California, they in Florida….need a chicken cam setup so they can see their chicks grow. Any suggestions would be appreciated…
    Thank you,
    Omi Bonnie

  17. What is an average lifespan of these goats? They really are so cute.

  18. Thanks Terry, that’s why there was no reference to sterilising in FAQ. I do clear poop once everyday, twice weather and time permitting.
    Looks rather chilly when I logged on icicles hanging of ramp, but looks like it will be a lovely sunny day when your morning arrives, have a good one :)