Tuesday, November 15, 2011

4-H Goats


I bought two wether Boer goats for showing in 4-H.  A wether goat is one who has been neutered. On September the 23rd I bought my goats from a nice family we go to 4-H with.  Each of my goats was about 3 months old already. After I got my goats, my sister decided she wanted a goat too, so she bought one as well. The reddish colored one is named Rusty. The other goat's name is Houdini because when we first got him, he escaped a lot but not any more.  My goats are market goats, these are goats that are intended to go to the market for meat after the sale.  (I will not be eating my goats.) 
You have to work with your goat and practice every day so you will be ready for the show.

I first showed my goats in the East Texas State Fair and placed 4th and 10th place in their classes.  A class is a weight range that is decided after all goats are weighed at registration for the show.  This way all goats are divided into groups of goats that are the most alike. 
The way you show market goats is; First, as you lead your goat in and around the show ring you should be confident and always keep your eye on the judge while also knowing what your goat is doing. Several times when all of the other goats stop walking you need to setup your goat or brace it.  Bracing is when you try to get all four feet setup like a square then push on his chest with your knee so that his back gets hard as he braces to push back on you. When the judge is two to three goats over, you really need to start bracing your goat. 

Next, when the judge is in front of your goat, you have to brace the goat really hard because the judge will be feeling the back of your goat. While the judge is doing that, he may ask you some questions such as how much you feed your goat, what is the goats name, etc. 

Then, when the judge is done checking all of the goats in the class, he will pick out the goats that he likes the best and pull them to the side.  He will then check these goats again before putting them in 1st, 2nd, and 3rd place order.  

Finally, you will walk your goat out of the ring. If your goat placed 1st in your class, you will most likely be called back with all of the 1st place goats from each class to be judged again for a Grand and Reserve Grand champion out of the whole group.

Different rules will apply in different shows, so be sure to check the rules before you register or go to a show.

When you get home from the show even if you win first place you still need to work with your goats. 

I hope this post will help you learn how to show your goats. 

Here are some pictures of us working with dad to build our goats a shelter.  Now the goats can get out of the weather and we can keep them separated when we feed to keep some from eating the others food.
Building the shelter.
Taking a break for a photo. 

1 comment:

  1. What an interesting post! You did a great job of explaining how to show a goat. I had friends who did that, but I never understood what it was all about. Thanks for writing about this!

    I have included your post in my 'blog tour' so my students and others will be visiting your blog to read about it, too.

    I hope you will post again about your 4-H activities. It would be interesting to learn what else you do!

    Ms. Tatiana