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AUSTRALIAN MINIATURE BREED – The Designer Breed

Breed Examples

THE BREED

 

Origin: The Australian Miniature Goat is an Australian breed established in 2000. The breed was originally developed by pairing carefully selected smaller stature animals of excellent type from purebred and cross bred full sized goats and small Australian bush goats, cashmere and angora goats to ensure hardiness of animals and produce a “designer” animal perfect for the small land holder that met the individual owner’s needs – milk, fleece, hair, weed eater, companion and all round perfect pet.

 

Temperaments: Gentle and loveable, easily trainable. They are gregarious, friendly with a calm and playful nature.

 

Uses: Predominately a pet breed. For families looking for backyard milking pets a well-bred miniature female can produce enough milk for the family each day some of which can be used to make cheese, yogurt and even soap. Miniature goats with Cashmere coats can be shaved and the fleece can be spun and used to make small garments or used in art and craft. Goat manure is very high in nitrogen, and is great for the garden. Miniature Goats make great companion animals and can be kept with horses, cattle, sheep, alpacas and many more species. Miniature Goats run on land that is often steep or not accessible to larger animals and they are often used to control weeds and over grown bush land.

 

Suitability: The Australian Miniature Goat has an impeccable temperament making the breed suitable for pets for young and old alike.

 

Size: While the breed is still under development, with breeders continuing to work on both refinement of type and reduction of height an MGBA registered Australian Miniature Goat has a maximum height allowance of 63.5cm. Purebred adults 57cm for does and 60 cm for bucks. See “Grades” below for a details view of heights for grading purposes.

 

Life span: 10–15 years

Breeding: Paired from 12 to 18 months of age. Gestation is 145 to 153 days. Miniature does generally have 1 kid, twins and triplets are common.

Price: Registered Australian Miniature Goats are individually priced on availability, age, height, grade, colour, show status and demand.

 

Females (Does) $250 to $1000 plus*
Intact Males (Bucks) $450 to $2000 plus*
Desexed males (Wethers) $150 to $450 plus*
*Prices quoted are average prices.

 

Registrations: The Australian Miniature bred animal does not become an “Australian Miniature Goat” and qualify for the breed until they are 3 years of age and have been height verified and proven to be under breed height and meet registrations requirements as an adult. Until this time these animals are registered as Miniature Bred. The MGBA uses a grading up process D, C, B, A, Purebred, Herdbook, Herdbook Purebred.

Recommendations: The MGBA recommends that buyers purchase at least 2 goats. Goats are a herd animal and require same species to live happy and healthy lives as well as being able to be trouble free pets. Animals are classified for Grade at 3 years and over.

 

The Standard of Excellence of the Australian Miniature Goat

The Herdbook Purebred Australian Miniature Goat is considered to be the Ideal: Females not exceeding 57cm and Males not exceeding 60cm at 3 years of age. The general impression should be one of refinement, beauty, symmetry and balance, possessing the conformation characteristics desirable of the breeds. Miniature Goats should show refinement and femininity in the Does, and boldness and masculinity in the Bucks.

 

Official Scorecard (100 points)

Behaviour/Temperament (15 points): Good temperament, tractable, alert, curious, intelligent, co-operative and friendly.

 

General Appearance, Style & Quality (15 points): The Australian miniature goat is a genetically small-sized, well-muscled, stylish animal with all parts of the body in balanced proportion relative to its size. The animal must exhibit a natural presence – alert attitude combined with balance, style and overall symmetry.

Fitting & Handling; top presentation of animal & handler. The coat is shown well groomed; may be naturally short or clipped, cashmere or long coat. Any colour, marking or pattern is acceptable.

 

Motion – Balanced and flowing, the front legs traveling straight and true, with hocks carried wide and straight from rear, following in line with front hooves, producing a clean, rhythmic and fluid way of going

 

Height: Purebred- Females not exceeding 57cm and Males not exceeding 60cm at 3 years of age. Height Measurement is to be taken at the highest point of the wither to the ground with the animal standing squarely on all four feet with all legs in a vertical line to the ground, with the head held in an upright relaxed position.

 

Head & Breed Character (10 points): The head is medium in length in balanced proportion, the bridge of nose is straight or slightly dished. Jaw broad, strong, well-muscled, symmetrically aligned on a relatively wide muzzle, with even bite, broad lips and large open nostrils. Eyes are bright and set well apart and any eye colour is accepted.

Polled, dehorned or neatly disbudded. Ears regardless of type should be evenly placed on head and of even size and shape. Recognised ear types:- (1) Elf ears: ideal ear is non-existent to a maximum length of 5cm (2″), the end of the ear should be turned up or down and cartilage shaping the small ear is allowed; (2) Pixie ears: open, erect and alert and; (3) Munchkin ears: flat along majority of length and fold downwards. Tip should sit between eye level and mid-muzzle.

Neck & Forequarters (10 points): The neck should be in proportion to the size of the animal and must blend smoothly into all body junctions, feminine in does and masculine in bucks, showing appropriate muscling. Withers, wedge shaped, set prominently above tightly assembled shoulders. Points of shoulder and elbow should be tight and blend smoothly with body allowing the forelegs to move smoothly against the ribs. Refined bone with sturdy, clean moulded joints. The crop should be full and the brisket moderately prominent & low. Chest floor deep & wide.

Body (15 points): Long, deep, wide body increasing in width from heart girth to rear barrel; level top line and proportionately short, strong, broad back that is level along chine and loin; Full at elbow, Well sprung, open, long flat ribs with increasing width and angling towards the rear of barrel. Refinement of bone but not lacking in substance, especially in the chest, girth, shoulder and hip.

Hindquarters (15 points): Slightly sloping long, wide level rump with good width between thurl to thurl and pin to pin and a slight angle from the hips to pins (back to the tail) to facilitate easier kidding. Thighs from side curving moderately inwards from pin to stifle. Thighs from rear, clean and wide apart, highly arched, curving outward into the escutcheon to accommodate udder and attachment.

Reproductive system (10 points): Does: Udder should be moderately deep, wide and capacious in relation to the size of the doe. Udder should be balanced and tightly attached, soft and pliable, blending smoothly as viewed from the side and the rear. Medial suspensory ligament strong, clearly defining udder halves, holding udder snugly against body and well above hocks. Udder pliable and elastic, well collapsed after milking, balanced and free of scar tissue. Teats proportionally shaped and evenly sized, ideally plumb when viewed from side or rear.

Bucks: must have two evenly placed rudimentary teats and a full, well attached, relatively even, appropriately sized scrotum and two evenly sized testicles. Sheath clean.

 

Feet & Legs (10 points): Correct from all angles set wide apart, straight, strong and squarely underneath. Long forearms clean knees, and short cannon bones in front and medium length, well-angled pasterns front and rear. Cleanly moulded hocks, nearly perpendicular from hock to pastern, well defined tendons. Feet short, neatly trimmed, compact, sloping hooves pointing directly ahead, heel as deep as toe.

 

General Faults (TO BE JUDGED ON THEIR SEVERITY)

teeth protruding less than ½cm (5mm) not visible, neck too long or thin, loose shoulders, shallow or narrow chest floor, roach or sway back, slab sided, shallow body, short rump, narrow or steep sloping rump, fleshy pendulous udder, unduly divided udder, pockets in udder, teats too small, too thin, bulbous, double teats, supernumery teats, double orifices, that do not interfere with kids nursing. Bucks with divided scrotum, less than 2½cm. Cow or sickle hock, knock knees, posty leg, dropped pastern, feet pointing in or out, splayed feet, uneven gait, scurs/residual horn (post removal procedure).

 

Serious Faults

Folded ears (length wise), teeth protruding more than ½cm (5mm), but not visible, double teats or supernumery teats that interfere with kids nursing, ill-defined unbalanced udder. Bucks with divided scrotum, more than 2½cm, scrotum small for age of animal.

 

Disqualifying Faults: overshot/undershot jaw (>10mm); obviously twisted jaw; Hermaphrodism (both male & female), Monorchid/cryptorchid (retained testicle/s), serious emaciation, blindness, horns.  Scrotum split over 5cm, utethra opening in wrong place.

 

AUSTRALIAN MINIATURE GOAT GRADING

The Australian Miniature Goat grading up process was set (Feb 2000) using height standards similar to the Nigerian Dwarf Goat Association (America) and adopted by the MGBA for the continued development of the Australian Miniature Goat breed. Creation of the Australian Miniature Goat using set standards is attainable. Standards were created and modified with the help of many reputable Foundation Breeders to promote the development of the Breed. The aim was to create standards that any knowledgeable person could easily follow, using animals that were not unobtainable and to develop a grading system similar to other accepted livestock grading up systems that would continually support a breeding program in which each new generation would meet the steadily reducing height requirements.

 

ELIGIBILITY

The Australian Miniature Goat is a height breed. Any goat of unknown / unregistered parentage meeting the height requirements is eligible to enter the breed and be used in the production of the Australian Miniature Goat. Angora, Boer, Kalahari, Cashmere, Bush Goat, Dairy breeds and crosses FREE from disqualifying Australian Miniature Goat breed faults can enter the register as Australian Miniature Goats when they meet height and Grade D requirements.

 

HERD BOOK PUREBRED

Animal must conform to the characteristics of the Australian Miniature Goat breed

Animal must have two registered (minimum Purebred) parents to qualify as herd book Purebred.

Does must not exceed 57cm, Bucks and Wethers must not exceed 60cm – height verified by Qualified/Certified MGBA measurer(s)

 

PUREBRED

Animal must conform to the characteristics of the Australian Miniature Goat breed. Animal must have two registered (minimum Grade A) parents to qualify as Purebred.

Does must not exceed 57cm, Bucks and Wethers must not exceed 60cm – height verified by Qualified/Certified MGBA measurer(s)

 

GRADE A (graded at 3yrs of age)

Animal must conform to the characteristics of the Australian Miniature Goat breed. Animal must have two registered (minimum Grade B) parents.

Does must not exceed 58.5cm, Bucks and Wethers must not exceed 61cm – height verified by Qualified/Certified MGBA measurer(s)

 

GRADE B (graded at 3yrs of age)

Animal must conform to the characteristics of the Australian Miniature Goat breed. Animal must have two registered (minimum Grade C) parents.

Does must not exceed 59.7cm, Bucks and Wethers must not exceed 62.2cm.

 

GRADE C (graded at 3yrs of age)

Does must have at least one registered (minimum Grade D) parent. Bucks must have two registered (minimum Grade D) parents.

Does must not exceed 61cm, Bucks and Wethers must not exceed 63.5cm.

 

GRADE D (graded at 3yrs of age)

Does must not exceed 63.5cm, with or without recorded parentage.

Bucks and Wethers must not exceed 63.5cm and must have one registered miniature parent.

 

OVER HEIGHT

Over height animals may be used in the development of the miniature breed with their progeny being eligible for inclusion in the lower grades provided such progeny meet the height requirements for the breed.

 

UNDER HEIGHT

Adult Bucks 53.3cm and under and Adult Does 46cm and under are to be height verified by or under the direction of a Certified MGBA measurer to be considered for registration.