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Sable Goat Breed: Traits, Health & Feeding

sable goat breed

For goat breeders and dairy farmers, the Sable dairy goat is an attractive breed with a variety of coat colors that is sure to draw attention.

Originating from the Saanen which is white in color, the Sable dairy goat is a result of pairing two recessive genes for its non-white coloring.

But what else makes this special breed so desirable? Let’s take a closer look at the Sable dairy goat and explore why it’s becoming more popular among farmers and breeders alike.

Sable Goat Breed: Physical Traits

The Sable goat has a medium-sized body type with similar characteristics to that of a Saanen goat.

They can range in color from black, brown, and gray, but white coloring is not allowed. Their body is deep and wide with well-sprung ribs that point towards the rear.

Their back is straight with little slope to their rump, while their legs are long and strong with squared feet set apart from each other.

In addition, these goats have large upright ears that sometimes round at the tip and point forward.

The Sable Goat is tall and rangy with an average body height of 32 inches for bucks and 30 inches for does. Their live body weight can reach up to 65 kg (132 lbs-187 lbs).

They have short coats that can grow coarser with age, as well as strong jaws and deep muzzles. The color of their ears matches their body color, standing erect from the side of their head.

Horns are another distinguishing feature. If not disbudded as kids, they will grow straight back from the head and curl towards the back of their bodies.

Maturity and Personality

These goats reach maturity anywhere between 3-15 months old. This breed is known to be particularly hardy and can handle colder climates due to its thick coat and stocky build.

They make a great addition to those looking for hearty animals that require minimal maintenance.

In addition to physical traits, Sable Goats are also known for having friendly personalities that make them easy to work with.

They are generally docile animals but can have moments of stubbornness at times due to their independent nature.

As long as you respect these goats’ boundaries, they won’t hesitate to return the favor!

These animals are perfect for homesteads and farms as they can be used for both meat production as well as dairy production.

sable goat with horns

History of the Sable Goat Breed

The Sable Saanen first developed from white Saanens around 1904 and quickly grew in popularity.

Unfortunately, those who bred them were only interested in white goats. Any variation from this was seen as a defect, and the goat would be dispatched.

This led to many good Sables being lost due to ignorance. Thankfully, by the middle of 2002, 268 Sables had been registered with the New Zealand Dairy Goat Breeders Association.

Today, Sables are becoming increasingly popular among farmers due to their adaptability and hardiness. This makes them ideal dairy goats even in colder climates.

Their unique coloring has made them a favorite among hobbyist farmers who love their unique look and personality

Sable Goat Temperament

Sables are known for being friendly animals who enjoy interacting with humans.

They also love to explore their surroundings, so it’s important to provide them with plenty of areas to roam and play around in, such as a large pasture or barnyard.

The only issue with this breed is that they can be quite vocal, so it’s important to keep your neighbors in mind when raising Sables!

Sable goats are known for their intelligence, making them easy to train and respond positively to commands and rewards.

They also have an incredible sense of agility. They can jump incredibly high and maneuver around obstacles with ease.

This makes them great escape artists, so make sure your fencing is secure if you plan on keeping Sable goats!

Sable goats are incredibly friendly creatures who enjoy interacting with other farm animals, such as horses and chickens.

They have no problem socializing and mingling with other animals, so if you plan on raising multiple types of animals together, then Sable goats make a great addition to any farm or homestead.

sable goat kid

How Much Milk Does a Sable Goat Produce?

The milking ability of the Sable dairy goat is no different than that of a Saanen. However, some breeders claim that other attributes are superior to those of a Saanen.

These attributes include hardiness, strong maternal instinct, ease of kidding, good milk letdown response, placidity, and good feet and legs.

All these traits make the Sable an ideal choice for those looking for goats to produce quality milk as well as meat products or show animals.

The milk from Sable goats contains a higher butterfat content than many other breeds. This makes it ideal for producing high-quality dairy products such as cheese and yogurt.

This makes them an excellent choice when it comes to starting a dairy farm business. They provide more value to customers while also being easier to care for compared to other breeds.

Can You Raise a Sable Goat for Meat?

Raising sable goats for meat has numerous advantages. For one, these animals are relatively easy to care for.

They need minimal shelter, plenty of space to roam, and access to hay or other feed.

They also reproduce quickly, meaning that farmers can start seeing returns on their investments almost immediately.

Finally, the meat from Sable goats is leaner than the meat from traditional domesticated breeds. This makes it healthier and more desirable in certain markets.

brown sable goat

How to Care for a Sable Goat

The Sable goat is known for being gentle in nature. They make excellent pets for all types of owners, even those who are new to goat keeping!

As long as they’re provided with proper food and shelter, these animals tend to thrive in most environments.


Sable goats require a balanced diet with plenty of roughage. Roughage is important because it helps them digest their food more easily and keeps their digestive system functioning properly.

They should be given hay or grass that is free from mold, parasites, and other contaminants.

For additional nutrition, you can also provide them with a variety of grains such as oats, barley, corn, wheat bran, or soybeans.

If available, fresh vegetables like lettuce or kale can also be given to supplement their diet.

A healthy goat diet should include essential minerals such as calcium and phosphorus as well as vitamins A and E.

Calcium helps strengthen bones, while phosphorus aids in energy metabolism.

Vitamin A helps regulate cell growth, while vitamin E is an antioxidant that helps reduce inflammation in the body.

You can add mineral supplements directly to the goat’s feed or provide them with a specially formulated mineral block designed for goats.

Goats are browsers rather than grazers, so they need access to trees and shrubs in order to reach their full nutritional potential.

Allowing them to range freely on pasture land provides them with a variety of plants that contain different nutrient combinations. This helps keep them healthy and thriving throughout the year.

It is important to rotate grazing areas regularly so that the soil has time to replenish itself before being overgrazed again by your goats.


Sable goats are one of the most popular goat breeds for their amazing color patterns and their incredibly high productivity.

These goats are not seasonal breeders, meaning they can breed throughout the year.

One of the main reasons for breeding Sables is the variety of colors that they come in.

The dark skin tones mean that buyers from tropical countries will be more likely to purchase them, as their light skin makes White Saanen prone to skin cancer.

This means that you can still enjoy all of Saanen’s superior characteristics with a lower risk of skin cancer.

In addition to their beautiful colors, Sable goats have an extremely high productivity rate.

They produce a lot of milk. This goat breed is great for those looking to use them for dairy production or to sell milk products such as cheese or yogurt.

When it comes to successful breeding with Sables, there are a few tips you should keep in mind in order for it to go smoothly.

Make sure you choose healthy animals that do not have any underlying health issues before breeding them together.

This will ensure your offspring will be just as healthy as their parents!

Also, make sure that you provide enough space and nutrition for both the mother and baby during gestation. This will help ensure both stay safe and healthy throughout the process.

Keep detailed records of all your breeding activities, so you can monitor progress over time.

Climate Adaptability

The physical characteristics of the Sable goats make them well-equipped to handle just about any climate or terrain.

The goats are small in stature, but they have strong legs and powerful hooves that allow them to traverse rocky terrain with ease.

They also have long ears and great hearing, which helps them detect predators from far away.

The coats of these goats are short, dense, and coarse; this allows them to retain heat during cold weather and stay cool in hot temperatures.

Another quality that makes the Sable goat so adaptable is its diet. While it primarily eats grasses and shrubs, it will also eat other plants, such as nuts, fruits, leaves, and twigs, if necessary.

This means that the goat can survive in any environment with limited food sources by eating what is available in its immediate surroundings.

Finally, Sable goats are highly social animals which helps them adjust quickly when moved to new areas or introduced into new herds.

This social behavior has allowed them to thrive in different climates and environments around Africa over time.

They simply need to bond with their herd mates before they can start exploring their new home!

Health Issues

Sable goats may suffer from common goat diseases such as caprine arthritis encephalitis (CAE), which is caused by a virus and affects the joints and central nervous system.

This disease can cause lameness and neurological signs such as head tilt, circling, or seizuring.

CAE is usually spread through contact with infected milk or other body fluids, so proper hygiene practices should be followed when handling any goat.

Another common ailment in Sable goats is Johne’s Disease, also known as paratuberculosis.

This bacteria causes inflammation in the intestines and can lead to weight loss and diarrhea in affected animals.

It is most commonly spread through contact with infected manure or water sources.

Vaccines are available for both CAE and Johne’s Disease. So it is important to keep your Sables up to date on their vaccinations to prevent the spread of these diseases.

It is also important to check your Sables regularly for external parasites such as lice or mites.

These parasites can cause skin irritation and poor coat condition if left untreated.

Regular worming treatments help keep these parasites at bay, but it’s still important to monitor them regularly.

sable goat with kid

Where to Buy Sable Goats

Sable goats are a rare breed of goat prized for their luxurious coats and hardy nature. If you are looking to purchase a Sable goat, you may be wondering where to start.

The ISBA is the international association for Sable breeders and enthusiasts. The ISBA maintains a list of registered breeders, which includes both commercial and hobby farms.

All registered breeders adhere to strict ethical standards and health protocols regarding their animals.

They also provide resources such as educational materials, news updates, and social networking opportunities for those interested in learning more about Sables or finding potential buyers for their animals.

The ADGA is an organization devoted to promoting the dairy goat industry in North America.

The ADGA maintains lists of registered breeders by state, including those who specialize in breeding Sables.

There are no known dedicated Sable breeder clubs or online communities at this time.

However, social media platforms like Facebook provide great opportunities for connecting with other like-minded individuals who share your passion for raising these beautiful animals.

You can join relevant groups or pages and get advice from experts in the field on how best to care for your new pet or livestock companion, as well as where best to buy them!

Sable Goat Breed: Final Thoughts

The Sable goat is a beautiful animal with some impressive characteristics that make it stand out from other breeds.

From its mahogany coat to its hardy nature, high growth rate, and large size, this breed has it all.

If you’re looking for an unusual yet practical addition to your farm, then look no further than the Sable goat. This majestic creature will surely impress all your visitors!

Whether you plan on raising them for show or for meat production purposes, these amazing creatures are sure to add something special.

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