Toggenburg (goat)

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A Toggenburg doe
A Toggenburg buck

The Toggenburg is a breed of goat, named after the region in Switzerland where the breed originated, the Toggenburg valley. It is also the oldest registered breed. Toggenburgs are medium in size, moderate in production, and have relatively low butterfat content (2-4%) in their milk. Toggenburgs possess a general Swiss Marked pattern with various dilutions. The color is solid varying from light fawn to dark chocolate, with no preference for any shade. Distinct white markings are as follows: white ears with dark spot in middle; two white stripes down the face from above each eye to the muzzle; hind legs white from hocks to hooves; forelegs white from knees downward with a dark line (band) below knee acceptable; a white triangle on either side of the tail. Wattles, small rudimentary nubs of skin located on each side of the neck, are often present in this breed. The Toggenburg breed underwent a development program when introduced to Britain; the resulting British Toggenburgs are heavier and have improved milk quality. By the middle of 2002, 4146 Toggenburgs had been registered with the New Zealand Dairy Goat Breeders Association, representing 8.10% of registered dairy goats. They perform better in cooler conditions. They are the oldest known dairy breed of goats.

They should have straight or dished faces, but never roman noses. Toggenburgs are generally a friendly, quiet and gentle breed, and are good as pets, although they are classed as dairy goats. They are often extremely curious and inquisitive animals. Toggenburgs are arguably the hardiest of all goat breeds; crosses with meat goats (i.e. Kalahari red, Boer goats) can add better growth rates to their offspring, offering a milking line to the offspring of meat goats.