For a small family, a goat is an ideal milk supplier, not only because a goat is not too big and therefore easy to keep, but also because it is a sober animal with little satisfaction.
However, an average milk goat provides you with 3 to 4 liters of milk per day. The nutritional value of goat milk can be compared with that of cow's milk. Goat milk does not contain vitamin B12, but it is easier to digest than cow's milk. This is because the fat and protein particles are so small that they can not be distinguished from the rest of the milk. In addition, the fat of goat milk contains vitamin A, because of this, in particular, the cream is different from that of cows.
A goat is usually purchased by the self-supper for his milk, but of course also for his flesh and skin. There are several breeds of milk, but of course also varieties that have a better meat production.

Before the Second World War, goats in the Netherlands were mainly kept by people who had to make ends meet with a small income.
The Netherlands was then still an agricultural country and many people worked on land with the farmer, but they often had their own piece of land.
The goats that kept these people were often sober animals of undefined breed who, like their owners, had to be content with little.

The milk production of these so-called cows of the poor people was, however, of great importance, the families were children rich and the milk was needed to let all those children grow up to be strong agricultural laborers.
That is why they went looking for animals with a higher production.

Now there were two excellent breeds in Switzerland, namely the white Saanen goat and the Toggenburger.
These animals were imported to the Netherlands.
In the Netherlands, people started using the Saanen goat to further improve this variety.
This resulted in an even higher milk yield and one came to a new variant that was renamed the Dutch white goat.
With the Toggenburger things went a little different. These goats were somewhat stronger and more sober and came into their own more in the east of the country. The development did not go as fast as in the west of the country. Back then, Drente was a backward province and the strong and sober race of the Toggenburger came into its own.

Of course the goats had to produce youngsters every year to keep giving milk. Good young goats were arrested but the goats got a different destination!
Very good goats were kept as the deckbuck.
There were special goat holders where you could cover your spilly (ready-to-goat) goat for a small amount!
The goat holder had to stand firmly in his shoes. In the rutting season he was continually surrounded by the penetrating bokkenlucht of Sjoerd or Castor.!
Also, goats were castrated. These went for the goat cart, among other things, as a popular play and touring object for the children.

However, the Netherlands quickly became an industrial country and the agricultural sector was modernizing enormously. The cow of the poor became a hobby animal and the goat cart became a pedal car or children's bicycle.
Associations were set up to cultivate and further improve the goat breeds. There are still official goat inspections to the glory of the proud hobby keepers.
Economically, the goat was of no importance anymore!

Around the 80s, the goat again attracted commercial attention.
There were quotas for the cow's milk so that some cattle farmers looked for an alternative.
At that time, exclusive cheeses etc. became more of an interest. The production of goat milk and goat's cheese turned out to be a good alternative. This is partly because goat milk is often particularly suitable for people with certain skin conditions and allergies.
The fat composition of goat milk is in fact different from that of cow's milk.

Of course the Dutch white milk goat, which has now become famous, was chosen for this task. However, in order to raise the fat content of the milk, they went cross-breeding with Nubian goats.
The milk production of the goats thus produced is so high that they produce about the same amount of milk as the average dairy cow in proportion to its weight and food intake.
Nowadays, an average dairy cow gives about 8000 liters of milk a year and her body weight is about 500 kilos.
A milking goat gives about 850 liters of milk per year and its weight is around 60 kilos.
Both species are dry for a few months during the last period of the gestation, which is of course necessary for the new life to grow internally.

Of course the hobby goat husbandry went further and besides other Dutch goat breeds such as the Dutch goat and the Zeeland and Veluwe land goat, foreign goats also joined the ranks. Examples include the Wallonian goat and
the Nubian goat.
However, the most famous hobby goat is the dwarf goat from Cameroon.
However, this animal does not belong to the dairy goats and was kept exclusively for meat production in the country of origin. A goat is fully grown three years after the birth but is ready for breeding in its second year of life. It can usually be covered from mid-September to December. The gestation period is normally 147 days so a small 5 months and she usually throws two lambs but sometimes 3 and sometimes 4. Soon after birth the young animals can stand and drink the so-called colostrum with their mother. The colostrum contains anti-infective substances.A few days after birth the young animals run happily through the pasture and can take some solid food.After three or four months they are completely independent although they still like to stay with mother and sometimes even steal milk from another goat's mother. Ten years later the goat has become an old grandmother.

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