Question about showing goats

Discussion in 'Dairy Diaries' started by Ariel301, Oct 21, 2009.

  1. Ariel301

    Ariel301 Guest

    101
    Oct 12, 2009
    I have LaMancha goats and I would love to start showing them. I am working on learning to tell a good dairy goat from a bad one, but I have a question. When a goat is described as being very 'dairy', what does that mean? (Other than that she is a dairy goat lol!)
     
  2. liz

    liz Well-Known Member

    Oct 5, 2007
    Shelocta PA
    Very Dairy means that the goats has all the qualities needed to be dairy....you can have a "dairy" goat and it can have a great udder but no length to the body...and in reverse "a cantalope in a sock" for an udder and a very long deep body. At least thats how I perceive the phrase.
     

  3. goathappy

    goathappy New Member

    Oct 5, 2007
    Illinois
    If I remember right(forgive me if I'm wrong, plays are rotting my brain) dairy quality is determined by the femininity and angularity of certain points on a doe compared to her strength. A strong doe that shows great femininity and and great strength without being 'coarse' can be considered a dairy doe. It does not have to do with just the udder, but has mostly to do with general appearance.
     
  4. redsticker

    redsticker Member

    115
    May 7, 2009
    SE Louisiana
    From what I've been reading, it seems like dairy character is basically the same qualities they look for in linear appraisals. Long bodies, nice "spring of rib", wide escutcheon, and a nice udder to go along with it. There's other stuff too, but I'm still learning. ;)
     
  5. sparks879

    sparks879 New Member

    dairy qualities really are all over the score card, Dairy charecters goes into a long nech a deep long body for room for lots of kids, a wide rump to pass kids easily and hold up the weight of a full udder, feet tracking straight ahead strong pasturns that hold the doe up. Stron udder attahments that hold the udder where it should be for many years of milking.
    beth
     
  6. redsticker

    redsticker Member

    115
    May 7, 2009
    SE Louisiana
    I've heard people say that their doe is "flat" and "open boned". What does that mean?
     
  7. sparks879

    sparks879 New Member

    This is the easiest way for me to describe it, feel your does ribs, they should literly be flat, a meat goats ribs will feel more like a pencil. Go around and feel all of your animals ribs, you will feel a varying degree of "flat bones". As for the openess i like to be able to get at least two fingers width between a full sized dairy goats ribs. A doe should be very "open" meaning she is carrying a lot of width and "openess" meaning broad and wide. A pinched narrow doe is not going to hold up to having lots of kids over the year, there isnt room for it.
    beth
     
  8. Ariel301

    Ariel301 Guest

    101
    Oct 12, 2009
    Ahh ok. It's making a bit more sense. Learning the terminology can be confusing. =)

    Just to help me learn, here's some photos of one of my does, so I can look at her and see what people mean by the term. Comment on her 'dairyness' for me, please? She is six years old with six freshenings. Her udder isn't very full because she's nearly dried off for the season; it does get a lot bigger than this. I wish I had pictures of it full.

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    [​IMG]
     
  9. sparks879

    sparks879 New Member

    I see some areas i would like to improve on this doe. I like seeing a pretty head on my animals, For a lamancha i would like to seea broader muzzle and more refined head. She could use a longer neck Her neck blends into nice high withers and her shoulders apear to be smooth. She could use a deeper brisket and more depth to her body, though for her size that would be an odd sight. She isnt a huge doe. I would like to see a flatter topline she roaches a bit in her chine, she has a good wedge sgape being deeper in the back then the front. She has really good with from thurl to thurl being very flat and wide. She tracks straight ahead on her feet. I would like to see a tad more angulation to her rear legs.
    I went over a little more the dairy charecter, taking in her good points as well as points she could use some improvement.
    hope this helps some
    beth
     
  10. SDK

    SDK New Member

    Jun 26, 2008
    Yucaipa ca
    i'd like to see a straighter foreleg when viewed from the side. I'd also like her to be a deeper bodied doe for having 6 freshenings.

    I'd also like to see a cleaner head about her and more angulation to the rear legs.

    she also kind of has a ewe neck so a higher placed , longer neck would be nice.
     
  11. AlaskaBoers

    AlaskaBoers New Member

    May 6, 2008
    Wasilla Alaska
    pretty doe. :greengrin:

    Here's my opinion. :wink: from a boer person....

    deeper bodied, more rear leg angulation (theyre unusally straight) and smoother topline.

    but she has a nice high udder, sharp withers and width. :thumb:
     
  12. Ariel301

    Ariel301 Guest

    101
    Oct 12, 2009
    Thanks for the input, it was helpful.

    I do agree on her head, I've always thought she has sort of a big, coarse head. And she definitely isn't as deep bodied as my others either. She is a small doe; maybe 100 pounds at most.

    She actually does have an issue with the right hind pastern, though it doesn't show in the picture. When we got her she was walking on the outside side of her hoof because her feet were so badly overgrown and crooked. She's doing better now, but it seems the muscles are weak from walking badly for who knows how long, so that pastern still sort of buckles to the side. I'm hoping it will clear up with time and good trimming.

    All right, how about this doe, for comparison? This is Flora, she is 8 years old (8 freshenings). She's a bigger doe than Gracee is, and deeper bodied, but I'm not sure about her udder. She had mastitis before we got her, and was not making milk on the left side at all. The right side gets huge when it is full, but I'm not so sure it's a good udder even though she's a great milk producer. (We were getting almost a whole gallon from just the one side!) It's hard to get past how lopsided it is; I hope she makes milk on both sides again next season. I think she could use a lot more angulation to the hind legs; they look like fence posts and I notice she doesn't bend at the hocks very well when she walks because of it. She is nice and wide though--wider than Gracee. Do you think her neck is a bit short too? You'll have to ignore her terrible haircut--she hates being shaved and I can never do a good job on her.

    [​IMG]
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  13. sparks879

    sparks879 New Member

    I like this does head better, its not so course. She could definatly use a longer neck and a deeper brisket. Like the last doe she is a bit shallow. She toes in a bit but she is deeper and wedgier. her topline is much nicer and she is very long from hips to pins. I would like to see better rear leg set. Its hard to tell if her udder will imprive with another freshening or if she will bring milk back onto that side. A lot of times mastitis causes a lot of scar tissue build up and the milk production on that side just never comes back. She may continually be lopsided. .
    beth
     
  14. SDK

    SDK New Member

    Jun 26, 2008
    Yucaipa ca
    yes the 8 year old has a nice head.. i'd like a longer neck, a deeper body and a smoother topline as she is very roached on her top. i would say out of the two the older doe has better dairy character.

    the biggest thing that i'd try to improve on in these does is their body capacity
     
  15. Ariel301

    Ariel301 Guest

    101
    Oct 12, 2009
    Ok, I think I'm learning. Thanks!

    What do you mean when you say she is 'roached' in her topline?
     
  16. SDK

    SDK New Member

    Jun 26, 2008
    Yucaipa ca
    roaching is when her spine goes up .. like a hill.


    i attached pictures of my two lamancha does.. they are VERY dairy but not roached..


    you're pretty much looking for a level topped animal that has a slightly uphill stance
     
  17. Ariel301

    Ariel301 Guest

    101
    Oct 12, 2009
    Yeah, I see what you mean. Unfortunately my buck has that same roach, maybe even a bit worse...But a neighbor is getting back into dairy goats, and she may be getting a LaMancha buck, so next year I ought to have more breeding options.

    Beautiful does, SDK. Thanks for sharing your pictures.

    It seems to me that you sort of hide smaller flaws when you set them up in a show stance...the way their hind legs are placed, it can make them look much wider and more uphill. But I guess it's always that way in showing animals...I used to show horses and in conformation classes people do all sorts of things to hide a flaw or distract the judge from it by accenting something else...sparkly silver halters to hide a plain head, tail extensions on a horse with a stubby tail, colored chalk to hide a scar or brighten up white markings, a pretty colored shirt on the handler, Arab horses being shown with their hind legs stretched back to make their toplines look more flat...I like how in goat shows the handlers all wear pretty much simple, plain outfits, everyone is dressed mostly the same, and the goats are shown with just a simple chain collar. It's much less complicated than showing horses and it sort of levels the playing field--you can be more certain that the judge is looking at the animal and not the expensive accessories!

    These two does I have shown you actually have two championship legs each from before I bought them, so I guess they can't be all that bad. Is there some deterioration of conformation as they age? I know that is true of horses.
     
  18. capriola-nd

    capriola-nd New Member

    Jul 6, 2008
    Northwest Oregon
    Yes, some things can improve with age but a lot of things can become worse. Sometimes a roached chine can level out with more freshenings. This being because the barrel becomes deeper, in effect "pulling" the area of the chine down. If that makes any sense at all. I read it somewhere.

    Attachments to the udder, if poor, will only worsen.

    I also notice that about how people set their goats up, makes them look much more "uphill" than in reality but it's good that the judge will have the animals walk around in the ring, so they can see if they are naturally slightly "uphill".

    Show wins have a lot to do with the competition in the ring. If there are not a lot of animals, the doe who wins may not be as nice but would be the best in the group.

    Bred to the right buck, your girls have potential!
     
  19. StaceyRosado

    StaceyRosado Administrator Staff Member Supporting Member

    Oct 4, 2007
    NJ
    yes "setting up" or "stacking" of a goat by the handler does show off the goats strengths and hide their flaws.
    I have a doe who is weak in the chine (opposite of roaching) but by "loining" her (running my fingers down her back) I can level her off. Two judges put her in 4th because of her other qualities but couldnt get past her weak chine to move her up more-- they even noted how i knew what was the issue and commented to the crowd on it.

    6 weeks later she won reserve and then grand champion junior -- why? the pool of animals was smaller and none of the big name breeders were there AND because she had grown out of her weird back issues. She still doesnt have the most level back but it isnt as bad as it use to be. But in years to come I dont know what she will do -- being pregnant could worsen her condition so she may never get her other two legs. :shrug: its all a little game you play basically.

    Thats why if there is a 5 or even 9 year old in the ring -- they may not look as beautiful as the 2 or 3 year old also in the grand line up. But the judge will see how well that older doe held up over time and freshonings and she 9 times out of 10 gets the Grand Champion win. She maybe showing her age but if her topline is still intact and her udder is still well attached and even if it isnt the most capacious these are things they look for. Longevity in conformation and structure are rewarded.