Maple-Oak Farm's purebred Swiss Saanen and Alpine dairy goats have received numerous awards at the Wisconsin State Fair and the American Dairy Goat Association (ADGA) National Show. Our dairy goats have also placed in the top 10 at the ADGA National Show. We breed our goats to be competitive in the show ring but also structurally sound and productive throughout their dairy lives.
...are high performers in the 2022 Wisconsin State Fair milking competion!
View our 2022 breeding schedule:
Of all domestic animals, goats have some of the oldest breed standards and production records. In the US, the first standard records were kept by the US Department of Agriculture as far back as 1935. These standards help in marketing and trade of goats.
The familiar breeds of today's dairy goats resulted from domestication of goats in ancient times, approximately 9,000 to 11,000 years ago. Breeds were developed for a specific primary use—such as for travel, meat, or milk—or for specific dual or multipurpose uses. All breeds resulted from goats of a particular type breeding with other goats of that same type. For example, goats with particular hair color or markings were bred to goats with similar hair color or markings to produce more goats of the same color or, for instance, goats excelling in strength were bred to other goats similarly excelling in strength to produce more goats that excel in strength.
A "purebred" is a goat that has its entire pedigree (i.e., family line) within the same breed and is registered as such with a registry like the American Goat Society, for example. An "American" is a goat that has met breed standards after a specified number of generations; these goats come from previously-undocumented lineages (that still may have been a purebred lineage) or have American or other breeds in their past. Crossbreeds have been seen as a way to introduce other desirable traits into a breed but come at the risk of introducing undesirable traits or traits that possess a risk to the health and well-being of the animal. As with other species of purebred animals, purebred goats are more dependable in terms of the function, physique, demeanor, and health; in short, they are more likely to be true to type. Notably, good pedigree increases the value of the animal (as often seen in racing horses and dogs).
The American Goat Society recognizes nine breeds of purebred dairy goats: Alpine, LaMancha, Nigerian Dwarf, Nubian, Oberhasli, Pygmy, Saanen, Sable, and Toggenburg. The American Dairy Goat Association recognizes nine breeds, albiet a different nine, of purebred and American dairy goats: Alpine, Golden Gurnsey, LaMancha, Nigerian Dwarf, Nubian, Oberhasli, Saanen, Sable and Toggenburg; it also recognizes Recorded Grade (a goat of mixed breeds or a goat appearing to be of one breed but lacking pedigree records).
Saanen dairy goats originated in the Saanen Valley of Switzerland and were spread throughout Europe in the 1890s and to the United States between the early 1900s and the 1930s. Saanens are the "gentle giants" or the "living marshmallows" of the dairy goat world, measuring at least 30-inches tall for does or 32-inches tall for bucks. Mature Saanen does weigh at least 135 pounds, and mature Saanen bucks weigh at least 160 to 170 pounds. Saanens are known for having a gentle, easy-going demeanor. These white goats generally produce 1.5 to 3 gallons of milk a day with 2.5 to 3.3 percent butterfat. They perform best in cooler climates and are sensitive to sunlight.
Maple-Oak Farm prides itself on the continued advancement of the purebred Saanen. Much care goes into the breeding system of our beloved Saanens as we look to pass on genetics that accentuate their size and productivity, that promote structural soundness, and that make them competitive in the show ring. Our purebred Saanens can successfully compete with the best in the dairy goat world.
Maple-Oak Farm is also home to a herd (under the herd name of Iceberg) of French Alpine dairy goats, both purebred and American. Alpine dairy goats originated in the Alps. These colored goats (often in mixtures of black, white and/or brown) are friendly, curious, and fiesty. Mature does measure at least 30-inches tall and weigh at least 135 pounds while mature bucks measure at least 32-inches tall and weigh at least 160 pounds. Alpine goats generally produce 1 to 2 gallons of milk a day with 3.4 percent butterfat (a relatively-low fat content), and 2.3 grams of protein; it is a nutrient-dense milk in comparision to its calorie count. Like Saanens, Alpines thrive in cooler climates, but they also in warmer climates.References:
All About Goats. "Goat Breeds". All About Goats, nd. Accessed 21 Oct 2022 at https://allaboutgoats.com/goat-breeds/