Pygmy Goat Breed Standard


The pygmy goat is hardy, good natured, genetically small, cobby and compact.  Head, neck and legs are short in relation to body length.  The body is full-barrelled and well muscled, circumference in relation to height and weight is proportionally greater than in other breeds.  Sexual characteristics are clearly defined.  The overall picture is that of an alert, animated goat of pleasing proportions.


Females are considered mature at 24 months, males at 30 months, although some animals may continue to grow after this age.  The  following apply to mature animals;

  minimum maximum
height at withers:
17" (432mm) 22" (560mm)
height at withers:
17" (432mm) 21" (533mm)
cannon length:
males and females
3.5" (89mm) 4.5" (115mm)

Cannon length (front) measured from extremities of knee and pastern joint, bent perpendicular to cannon bone;-



Short to medium long, profile straight or dished, well rounded muzzle with full chin and even bite.  Forehead broad, flat to concave.  Eyes set well apart, bright, dark, prominent but not protruding.  Ears medium sized, firm and alertly mobile.  Genetically horned but disbudding permissible. Horns, if present, must be symmetrical.  Correct mouth with teeth meeting the upper dental pad.


Shorter and rounder than other breeds, tassels if present, placed symmetrically on neck.


Well angulated and well attached.

Heart Girth

Large due to long, well sprung foreribs, chest floor wide and full at point of elbow.

Body Capacity

Large in proportion to size of animal, providing ample digestive and reproductive capacity, strength, vigour and stamina.  Barrel broad and deep, increasing in width towards flank, giving an impression of perpetual pregnancy, symmetrical and well supported by firm abdominal wall and well sprung ribs.


Strong, the chine should be nearly level, sloping slightly down from the withers and then blending smoothly into the loin.  Loin nearly level, rising gently towards the rump.
The loin should be wide, well muscled and strong.


Medium long, medium wide, neither level or steep. Hips wide, nearly level with the back.  Thurls high and wide apart.  Pin bones wide apart, somewhat lower than hips. 
Pronounced tail, set high, wide at base, held straight.


Strong, well muscled, wide apart.  Forelegs, proportionately short, straight, wide apart and squarely set with elbows close to ribs.  Cannon bone short.  Hind legs  (viewed from rear) straight, widely set, hocks cleanly moulded, sharply angled.  Pasterns short, strong and resilient.  Feet well shaped with deep heel and level sole.

Mammary System

Udder firm, rounded, small to medium size.  Teats placed symmetrically, free from multiple or deformed teats and multiple orifices.


The full coat of straight hair varies in density and length with the seasons.  Beards on females may be sparse or non-existant, but not trimmed.  On males, abundant hair growth is desirable, with full, long beard and cape-like mane over shoulders.


All colours and markings are acceptable except light  ‘swiss stripe’ markings on the face.


Unmistakably masculine head, neck and shoulders without any trace of courseness.  Horns longer and more substantial than the female.  Disbudding is permissible.  The barrel may be slightly less well developed than the female. 
Reproductive system – two testicles of appropriate size for age of animal carried in a healthy scrotum.  Two rudimentary teats of uniform size, free from multiple or deformed teats and multiple orifices.  Any deformity or evidence of teats removed is a DISQUALIFYING faultin the entire male.

THE PYGMY WETHER (castrated male)

Wethers are somewhat more sturdily built than females, but not obese.  They do not develop the typical male head, neck and shoulders.  Horn growth is less than in the entire male.  The long cape-like coat does not develop.  The reproductive system is obviously disregarded.

The following faults disqualify from HERD BOOK registration and also from entry to Breed classes at shows;

  • Any mouth or jaw defect  i.e. over-shot, under-shot or twisted jaw.
  • Any teat defect of any description – supernumerary, fish-tail, multiple orifices etc
  • Polled (genetically hornless)
  • Colour – light ‘swiss-type’ markings.
  • Roman nose or pendulous ears.
  • Males-testicles uneven in size, not properly descended or less than two.
  • Non-conformity to size.
  • Evidence of supernumerary teats being removed.

Note: Wethers and females with mouth/teat defects can be entered in the PET RECORD registry and can be entered in Pet section classes at shows.