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Minimum Saanen Size

1014 Views 4 Replies 4 Participants Last post by  ryansj
I have the opportunity to get a 3.5 year old Saanen that has been trained to pack though is largely unproven as this year would be his first real year packing. He seems to have a great disposition. My concern is the fact he is small. He is only about 30 inches at the shoulder. I have three questions:

1) Is this goat too small to even mess with? Are there folks out there that have had good experiences with such a small pack goat?
2) What is the chance of substantial growth in the 3rd year?
3) If he is small because of poor nutrition or skimpy rations is there a chance that a substantial improvement in diet could bring about a dramatic last minute change? I do not know if this is the case or not but the guy selling him seems to be having a hard time making ends meet and this is the reason for selling him.
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I can not answer all your questions.
30 inches is short for a 3.5 year old saanen.
saanens are often referred to as gentle
giants .
Saanens usually put on most of their growth in the first couple of years. At about age 3.5 we really start cutting back on the grain and alfalfa so I'd be hesitant to start with a rich feeding diet at his age.

it all depends on wether or not the growth plates on his bones are already fused or not.

If not, there's potential for more growth over the next 2 years.

But I wouldn't poor feed into him now. Is he now large enough that a saddle will fit him? If yes, I would take the chance, because it's likely that he will grow some more.

Next I would do a full work-up: blood, fecal tests, worming, getting him on a good mineral feed and adding a bit of grain - depending on the results of the work-up.

If you want to invest that much time, money and effort is up to you.
I decided against getting the goat. I have three goats that are less than one year old right now (almost 10 months). I measured them today and they range from 26" to close to 29" at the withers. That helped put the 30" inches into perspective. I worry that the poor guy is full of parasites. His coat doesn't look the best. If I am being told the truth he was purchased from a pack goat breeder and was quite expensive. I am certainly not an expert but I am guessing that he is a victim of bad care. It is sad.
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