Fun Pygmy Goat Facts For Kids

Anusuya Mukherjee
Aug 31, 2023 By Anusuya Mukherjee
Originally Published on Aug 05, 2021
Edited by Isobel Murphy
Fact-checked by Shikha Sharma
Find great pygmy goat facts here.
Age: 3-18
Read time: 7.3 Min

African pygmy goats are a breed of goats also known to be a type of dwarf goat. They are a restricted domesticated pet breed of goats and are primarily found in Cameroon in West Africa. This breed of goats is very social and chooses to live in herds as a family.

One of the most interesting characteristics of this breed of pygmy goats is that they produce large amounts of pygmy goat milk. A full-grown pygmy goat also loves to climb rocks and logs of wood!

The pygmy goat habitat includes luscious green grasslands and farmlands and the African pygmy goat eats a herbivorous food diet of hay and grass.

The African pygmy goat is one of the few goat breeds that are not raised for meat or food, as instead, they make great pets! They are present in several zoos as well.

To tell the difference between male and female pygmy goats, look our for their beards! A male pygmy goat grows a beard and that’s how they are usually recognized. Pygmy goats are excellent pets for families with kids who live in suitable environments for their growth, such as farmlands, high mountainous regions, and open grasslands.

Find out more about this fascinating goat species here, or read about the Percheron or axis deer to learn about other animals here on Kidadl.

Pygmy Goat Interesting Facts

What type of animal is a pygmy goat?

The African pygmy goat is a breed of goats that is located in West Africa.

What class of animal does a pygmy goat belong to?

African pygmy goats are mammals so they belong to the Mammalia class.

How many pygmy goats are there in the world?

These pygmy goats from West Africa are said to have a population of approximately 1150 in the world. As well as these pygmy goats from Africa, other breeds of pygmy goats found in zoos around the world too.

Where does a pygmy goat live?

This pygmy goat from West Africa is domesticated and can be found living on a farm, in a zoo, or anywhere with plenty of grass, such as a field, or even in several mountainous ranges.

Whilst a pygmy goat can live in captivity in a zoo, they usually choose a grassland or a range with lots of trees since their diet usually includes the bark of a tree (thanks to their strong digestive system).

Pygmy goats that live in the wild usually choose places that are relatively free of wild animals and predators to keep safe, so they favor open spaces and farmlands.

What is a pygmy goat's habitat?

Pygmy goats live in Cameroon in West Africa. Since these pygmy goats are domesticated they can live on a farm and as pets as well.

They need grass as well as wilderness in their habitat. Any pygmy goats of Africa that are not domesticated and who do not live on a farm choose to live on hillsides, mountainous regions, and grass plains.

Who do pygmy goats live with?

Pygmy goats are animals who can live in a zoo with other animals and they can also live as domestic pets on a farm. They are used to being surrounded by people and have friendly behavior with kids.

On the other hand, pygmy goats that choose to live in the wild choose to roam around in herds with other pygmy goats.

How long does a pygmy goat live?

Pygmy goats can live up to 15 years of age if the right care and attention are provided, including the right amount of food to make a healthy diet and adequate protection from predators.

How do they reproduce?

The pygmy goats can produce up to two young pygmy goats a year and females need to be a minimum age of six to nine months in order to reproduce and have kids.

What is their conservation status?

The conservation status of pygmy goats is currently not listed by the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN).

Pygmy Goat Fun Facts

What do pygmy goats look like?

Pygmy goats are much smaller than other goats. Their coat can be found in a variety of colors, from white, caramel, silver, or black (with spots) to plain black, dark red, or brown. They have a medium-long fur coat that changes depending upon the season and males grow an adorable beard!

Fun Pygmy Goat Facts For Kids

How cute are they?

West African pygmy goats are very cute pets and are one of the cutest goat breeds due to their small size, friendly nature, and how well they behave around humans, including with kids.

Even an adult pygmy goat does not grow very big so they remain small and cute for their whole lives, making them a perfect selection to keep as pets or to visit at the zoo!

How do they communicate?

Pygmy goats are social animals that use 'contact calling systems' to communicate with each other. A particular behavior noted by those researching communication between pygmy goats is their iconic bleating sound.

How big is a pygmy goat?

African pygmy goats are small in size and can be described as dwarf animals. An average pygmy goat is between 15-24 in (38.1-60.96 cm) tall.

Females have an average weight of 25-50 lb (11.3-22.7 kg) while male pygmy goats weigh between 60-90 lb (27.2-40.8 kg). This breed of pygmy goats is a dwarf goat species, so the average pygmy goat size is quite small compared to other species of goats.

How fast can a pygmy goat move?

Pygmy goats can move at speeds up to 10 mph (16.09 kph). Usually, pygmy goats that are kept as pets are not as fast as this, unless they are specifically trained in the zoo or by their owners to do so.

How much does a pygmy goat weigh?

Pygmy goat females weigh about 25-50 lb (11.3-22.7 kg)  and male pygmy goats weigh between 60-90 lb (27.2-40.8 kg).

What are their male and female names of the species?

Females are called 'nannies' or 'does', while male pygmy goats are called 'bucks'.

What would you call a baby pygmy goat?

A baby pygmy goat is called a 'kid'.

What do they eat?

Pygmy goats eat a variety of natural foods, ranging from grass, and hay, to vegetables, fruits, leaves, twigs, shrubs, and vines. They have a strong digestive system due to which they are more than capable of eating the bark of trees.

They can also (if they have to) eat items found in the garbage such as tin cans, boxes, and so on. This is all thanks to their strong digestive system.

The pygmy goat is extremely vulnerable in open areas in the wild and therefore they tend to eat a bit of their food in open areas and they then regurgitate a portion of the food that they have eaten in different places to avoid predators such as lions, jackals, and other wild animals from finding them.

Therefore, they keep moving from place to place, chewing the food that they collected from one particular place, clever right?

Are they dangerous?

Pygmy goats are not dangerous and they are very friendly with humans, including kids. For many people, they make a great pet goat and their small, dwarf-like size makes them very cute.

Would they make a good pet?

You can keep a pygmy goat as a pet if it is treated with care and protected from predators. These goats are also found in captivity in several zoos.

Pygmy goats have a small size and a dwarf-like appearance, therefore they are known to be really cute pets that kids love. If kept as a domestic pet, it is encouraged that these goats live with each other in a family or community of their own species.

Did you know...

Pygmy goats are one of the best breeds of goats for milk supply! They supply humans with plenty of milk when compared to other breeds of goats, offering between 1-2 quarts of milk each day.

There is a common myth that all goats (including pygmy goats) smell! This is not technically true, as it is actually just the male goats who carry a strong odor.

To care for pygmy goats it is important to provide them with plenty of grass and vegetable to replicate the average pygmy goat diet in the wild.

Pygmy goat vs Nigerian dwarf

Compared to the Nigerian dwarf goat, the pygmy goat is smaller and shorter. Both of these goats are very similar and telling the difference between the two can be tough, however, there are a few key differences.

For example, the milk that is given by Nigerian dwarf goat females is said to be extremely creamy and more delicious than the milk provided by pygmy goat females. Pygmy goats also have thicker muscles than Nigerian dwarf goats.

How has the pygmy goat adapted to its habitat?

The pygmy goat is a good domesticated pet that is quite perceptive is intelligent by nature. They can adapt to two different environments: the wild environment and captivity.

In the wild, they rely solely on themselves while in farm and domestic environments these goats are much more dependent on the humans around them. Their diet plays an important role in how these goats adapt to their habitat.

Pygmy goats eat a natural diet in zoos and farms and in the wild, including lots of hay, grass, and vegetables.

Here at Kidadl, we have carefully created lots of interesting family-friendly animal facts for everyone to discover! Learn more about some other mammals including the mountain goat, or plains zebra.

You can even occupy yourself at home by drawing one on our pygmy goat coloring pages.

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Written by Anusuya Mukherjee

Bachelor of Arts and Law specializing in Political Science and Intellectual Property Rights

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Anusuya MukherjeeBachelor of Arts and Law specializing in Political Science and Intellectual Property Rights

With a wealth of international experience spanning Europe, Africa, North America, and the Middle East, Anusuya brings a unique perspective to her work as a Content Assistant and Content Updating Coordinator. She holds a law degree from India and has practiced law in India and Kuwait. Anusuya is a fan of rap music and enjoys a good cup of coffee in her free time. Currently, she is working on her novel, "Mr. Ivory Merchant".

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Fact-checked by Shikha Sharma

Bachelor of Commerce

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Shikha SharmaBachelor of Commerce

Shikha has a Bachelor of Commerce degree from the University of Delhi. She also holds a Diploma in Information Technology, which has helped her acquire technical and design skills.

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