The Fainting Farm


Mr. Pibb, back where he belongs.

This is a decision that has been a long time coming, and was not made easily, but now that it’s made, I’m excited about it. We started out to raise Nigerian Dwarf goats. I was sucked in by the Fainters and their party tricks, and next thing you know, we were trying to raise two different herds of goats.

This has worked out great. Here’s Exhibit A (goat on the right):

(Dr. Pepper, a Nigerian Dwarf/Fainter cross.)

And Exhibit B:

(Clover’s latest, another Nigerian Dwarf/Fainter cross.)

Then I developed my next harebrained scheme, the duck ‘n’ buck yard. That worked great. We now have NO DUCKS. (Yes, a few weeks ago, something came in and killed them ALL. SOB. I have officially given up on ducks. We have ONE American Blue goose left. She is now a permanent resident of the chicken yard because if I let her out, guess what’ll happen?)

So back to what is now the buck ‘n’ no duck yard. I’ve got Nigerian Dwarf bucks escaping left and right. Here is my personal experience with these two breeds.

Nigerian Dwarf goats: These are the smartest goats on the planet. Possibly smarter than any other animal bar none. Possibly, they are in control of the universe, we just don’t know. Clover has her finger on the Red Button. Nobody make her mad! Super smart in the does–mostly, a good thing. They have more personality in one of their tiny hooves than most animals have in their entire bodies. Or most people, for that matter. Nigerian Dwarf bucks–not such a good thing. Smart can make them err on the aggressive side at times. They are wily, cunning devils, I tell you.

Fainters: These are sweet goats, only as smart as a goat should be, which means you get to be smarter than them most of the time. The girls are gentle and docile. The bucks are calm, and only aggressive enough to get their job done, and not so aggressive as to hurt you or even freak you out a little.

These are my experiences with these two breeds with my animals, so others may beg to differ and I understand that. However, I’m dealing with my animals, so my decisions are based on what I have in front of me and all the factors going on here. What if I wanted to focus on just one of the breeds? Then I could run one buck with all my girls. But I have two breeds–what about that? Nigerian Dwarf Fainters (the crosses) can actually be registered with the Myotonic Registry (the registration organization for Fainting goats). To register Clover’s baby, I turned in Clover’s American Goat Society registration and registered him with the Myotonic Registry under Mr. Pibb’s registration as a 50 percent myotonic.

Can I turn around and do that in the other direction with the American Goat Society where the Nigerian Dwarfs are registered? No.

When I try to sell goats, which goats generate the most interest? The Fainters, hands-down. Fainters are meat goats, but they are appealing to people who want pet goats. Not only are they smaller than a standard size goat (my Fainters and my Nigerian Dwarf goats are about the same size), they do a party trick! They faint. I’ve had a hard time selling Nigerian Dwarf goats. (Possibly there is a glut in the Nigerian Dwarf market, I’m not sure, I just know that I have trouble selling them.) Nigerian Dwarf goats are dairy goats, but as long as I still keep the girls, I still have milk goats–and their babies are registerable and still appeal to people who want a pet goat with a party trick.

And aside from all of that more businessy stuff, I love Mr. Pibb.

This weekend, we sold Sprite’s baby, the only purebred Fainter baby we had left from this year’s kidding.

As if selling himself, he fainted in front of them TWICE.

Clover’s baby, the Nigerian Dwarf Fainter, went along with him as a buddy and a pet. At their request, we wethered him for them. They have girl goats, but no boys, so the purebred Fainter will be their new buck.

And off they went, to their new lives.

They weren’t going very far. After advertising all over the state, they ended up going to a home not very far away, within the county. It’s always sad to see goats go, but the babies can’t all stay, and the end of their story here is the beginning of their story somewhere else.

We’re down to only Sailor and Rhett. They are both purebred, registered blue-eyed Nigerian Dwarf intact bucks. (If you’re interested, email me at [email protected].) They are actually the two sweetest of the Nigerian Dwarf bucks we’ve had. Sailor is a particular favorite of mine, and I wish I’d wethered him so we could keep him, but he’s a bit old to wether now. Rhett has a great tri-color. I’m sure he’d throw gorgeous babies. Don’t even get me started on Pirate and Eclipse. I was never so relieved as when I waved bye-bye to them. Those two were like marauding Huns on our farm. (GREAT studs, though.)

We still have Dr. Pepper, by the way–Nutmeg’s cross baby. We wethered him a while back and he’s staying with us as our pet wether.

And from now on? We’re making nothing but pure Fainters and Fainter crosses here. LOVE my girls! Clover and Nutmeg aren’t going anywhere!

Clover: “One big strong man is enough for me, Woman, but what will the other girls do?”

And Mr. Pibb? He’s the king of the hill.

Mr. Pibb: “I like this plan. Well done.”


  1. whaledancer says:

    Mr Pibb looks smug.

  2. Granny Trace says:

    :dancingmonster: How do you remember and keep it all straight. I think you must never sleep. I appreciate all you do and share. I so love all your goats and critters.
    Granny Trace

  3. twiggityNDgoats says:

    I’m glad you were able to sell some of your kids. It is probably much simpler to concentrate on one breed especially since they’re different “types”. I’ll have to put in a good word for my Nigerian bucks though 🙂 I have never had any of my three try to escape to get to the girls. They all seem to be content in their yard doing “boy” things. They are easy to handle, one reason we went with the NDs. I’ll have to agree though that the Nigerians are smart and they are highly entertaining.

  4. Liz Pike says:

    Much easier keeping one breed and dealing with only one registry. Been there, done that with horses. Hopefully there will be less escape posts!

  5. TinaBell says:

    Well I’m glad you’ve got it all figured out! I certainly couldn’t keep it straight; I can’t remember what I’ve had for lunch on any given day….
    They’re so adorable, all your goats. Good info on the two breeds, in case I ever realize MY dream of having goats! Thanks!

  6. Glenda says:

    This is sort of like me with plants when I first began gardening. I wanted one of each! In reality that doesn’t work that well.

    I think you have made a wise decision. Streamlining sometimes is very necessary.

  7. Flowerpower says:

    I love your goats! Your goats have personality plus! I think you have made a wise decision here. Mr. Pibb does look a little smug here…and well Clover..she always looks that way. :snoopy:

  8. goatgirl says:

    I find it easier to concentrate on one breed. In our area too many people are breeding Nigerians and selling them and they are saturating the market with mediocre quality goats. If you show and do milk tests there is always a market for the babies. I do love my Nigerians and have found my bucks to be very sweet and with good fencing they stay put.

  9. holstein woman says:

    You have been one busy woman this summer! What next?

  10. chickenherd says:

    I KNEW you couldn’t sell Clover. I mean, what would you DO? Your life would have no meaning. You would relapse into depression and wander aimlessly, a ship with no tiller, a woman with no bossy goat. Cookie production lines would go down. Ah, Clover! How she runs things so flawlessly I never will know. Is she going to start giving out leadership classes?? Maybe the proceeds could go toward a state-of-the-art goat palace. 😆

  11. judyh says:

    I’m sorry to hear about the loss of your ducks. And also the other goose. I hate when something like that happens. I just hope something doesn’t attack the sheep. Are they still down in the lower bottom? Packs of dogs used to kill my Dad’s sheep when I was young but now there are coyotes in the area too for farmers to worry about killing their animals. 😥

  12. JeannieB says:

    This is more interesting than ‘Days of our Lives”!!

  13. Debbie @ Swampbilly Ranch says:

    I raise fainters also and I love them! I’m sorry about your ducks. I don’t have ducks for that very reason. I can’t keep them.

  14. joykenn says:

    Ah, HA! You mentioned the two lambs. They’re still alive! It’s a miracle but maybe you shouldn’t name them til they are older if you’re going to keep them.

    But, you could name one of them Lamb Chop after the sock puppet created by ventriloquist Shari Lewis. Maybe if you pretend it is intended for the table, that will throw Fate off and that one will live cause we know …they die.

  15. Runningtrails says:

    You have to do what is right for you. We have had to rethink plans and redo parts of our lives too, as time goes on. If it’s stressful, get rid of it. That’s my new motto these days.

    Mr. Pibb is adorable !

  16. whaledancer says:

    I’m glad you mentioned the lambs. I just came here to post a question about how Annabelle’s puppy is coming along. I was afraid when you didn’t mention them for a while that you were…sparing us.

  17. Miz Carmen says:

    I’ve heard that having a buck in with the dairy goats makes the milk taste bad – have you had the bucks in with the girls before? Have you noticed any flavor changes in the milk? We hope to have goats in the next couple of years, so I’m very curious…


  18. yvonnem says:

    Sprite’s baby was my favorite…he was so stinking cute! I hope they take great care of him, well, I know they will!

  19. lavenderblue says:

    Glad you got it all figured out. We had a couple pure bred rabbits, mini rex’s, at one time. Before we got all the paper work figured out, ready to be registered, both the stupid things had died. Perhaps pure bred anything is not for us.

    On the other hand, I think fainter goats would scare me. I’d be running for the lavender smelling salts all the time.

  20. elfoss says:

    i wish i new somone with a fainter. in liv in NE so most people have cows. not goats. i went 2 the best petting zoo in the world and they had a pygmy goat and i fell in love with it. sadly they didnt sell the babys that it had. ive never seen a fainter. i bet id love it!

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