Thirteen exuberant Dwarf Goat kids are delighting visitors of Zoo Basel! The springtime births began on March 18, and the father to all of the ‘kids’ is two-year-old Wingu.
The movements of the young Dwarf Goats are a bit clumsy at the moment, but as they develop both their social and motor skills, they will soon be experts. Like all goats, Dwarf Goats are also considered to be good mountaineers and climbers.
Their hooves are an important climbing aid: the sole surface of each hoof is soft and supple, and therefore can adapt to any terrain unevenness, while the hoof edge is significantly harder. The hoof claws can also be moved against each other, so the animal always has sufficient ground contact, even at steep points.
The Nigerian Dwarf Goat is a miniature dairy goat of West African ancestry. The original animals were transported from Africa on ships as food for captured carnivores being brought to zoos; the survivors were then maintained in herds at those zoos.
Nigerian Dwarf Goats are popular as pets and family milkers due to their easy maintenance and small stature. However, because of their high butterfat, they are also used by some dairies to make cheese. They are registered by the American Dairy Goat Association, the American Goat Society, and the Nigerian Dwarf Goat Association.
Aside from their diminutive physique, they are modest, resistant and well adapted to their native tropical conditions.
Nigerian Dwarf Goats are gentle and easily trainable. This, along with their small size and colorful appearance, makes them popular as pets. They can be very friendly and can easily be trained to walk on a leash, and some enjoy coming into the house with their owners.
Nigerian Dwarf Goats' small size also makes them excellent therapy animals for nursing homes and hospitals.
Nigerian Dwarf Goats are also easy birthers with very few birthing problems.