Saanen Goats


Free Flowing Milk Saanen Goats

The Saanen goat is the most popular milk breed capable of the very highest milk yields.

Female And Male Saanen
Female And Male Saanen 2 Years Old
Copyright: Felicity McCullough

Milking trials have recorded an average 24-hour yield of 4.29 kilograms of milk produced, with 3.58% butterfat and 2.66% protein, as recorded on the British Goat Society's website. This means roughly 1566 kilograms a year!

An interesting fun fact is that if you feed Saanans banana skins, the milk will be banana flavoured.

Female Saanen in Stanchion
Female Saanen in Stanchion
Copyright: Felicity McCullough

Saanens originate from the Saanen Valley in Switzerland. Because of this background, they tend to prefer high, rough ground.

In Britain, the breed has been worked on with the mixing of genetics from goats imported from Holland in 1922, from Switzerland in 1955 and Holland again in 1997 and 1998, as well as further semen imported from Switzerland in 1993.

These goats are easily recognised physically and are one of the largest of dairy breeds.

They are completely white, robust animals with beards and short legs.

They can have white, or dark skin. Goats with white skin have a tendency to develop skin cancer in sunny climates, whereas the dark skinned goats appear to be immune.

As can be expected from a high-yielding milker, they normally have well-hung udders.

In terms of temperament, they are said to have a placid disposition and a quiet nature.

The British Saanen, developed in the UK, is usually heavier and slightly leggier than the pure Saanens.

Young Saanen Being Bottle Fed

Sable Saanens were recognized as a breed in 2005, by the American Dairy Goat Association.  These are Saanens with a coloured coat and are therefore not white.

Felicity McCullough  
2nd March 2016  

Plants And Goats An Easy To Read Guide
Plants And Goats
An Easy To Read Guide
Felicity McCullough

Plants And Goats An Easy To Read Guide

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Photograph Credits:

Copyright Felicity McCullough

Saanen Goats
The Miriam and Ira D. Wallach Division of Art, Prints and Photographs: Photography Collection, The New York Public Library. "Saanen goats. Prince Georges County, Beltsville, Maryland." The New York Public Library Digital Collections. 1935 Nov..

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