Dairy Goats

 

Our Mini Nubian Herd

Alongside our flock of free range chickens, Dare 2 Dream Farms is also home to a small herd of Mini Nubian dairy goats. Our goats provide us with raw milk and also assist with plant management, landscaping, and fertilizing the soil. Our "Lady Buck" or female herd lead is Emma, a fourth generation Mini Nubian. Emma is mother to our second doe, Sophie, who gave birth to our two Purebred Mini Nubian bucks named Cedric and Snape, both of whom are offered for stud services and are also available for purchase.

 

The health of our dairy herd is very important to us, so we regularly rotate their grazing and housing along with our chickens to support a clean, disease-free environment. We also test our goats annually for CAE, CL, and Johnes disease, for which our herd is negative. In addition to our biological security measures, we offer our herd free-choice mineral supplements that compliment nutrition they receive from free range grazing and organic feed.

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As seasonal foragers, our goats enjoy a variety of pesticide- and herbicide-free nutrient rich food sources growing both wild and cultivated on the farm. Unlike sheep, cows, and other grazers who eat mainly grass or other low growing food sources, goats prefer to forage for a wide variety of plants including grasses, weeds, shrubs, and trees. The natural cravings of our herd shift with the seasons and, though we do provide our milking does with organic alfalfa and grain supplements, we are fortunate that the ecology of our farm is otherwise able to meet their needs in every season.

 

When the milk production of our goats starts increasing in the spring our goats can be seen nibbling on wild mustard, wild radish, and new grasses. Our herd sometimes even pitches in with gardening by trimming back berry cane rows, pruning low growing leafy shoots on fruit trees, and gobbling up any weeds emerging from our garden beds like dandelion, mallow, and prostrate knotweed. In late summer and early fall when our grass fields are in full swing and our girls are giving us the most milk, they love to spend all day grazing on a blend of alfalfa, red clover, barley, and oats as well as munching on the oak and willow trees that populate the borders of our grazing fields. In late fall and early winter the milk production  of our does starts to slow down. When this happens we set our does loose in the garden again to clear out any leftover crops before we prepare our garden beds for spring.

 

With every season the appetites of our goats compliment the growing rhythms of our farm. They help us manage our land by clearing unwanted plants and fertilizing the soil for the next seasonal crops all while making us delicious milk for homemade cheese and other dairy treats! As very smart, curious, and playful animals, our goats are productive and entertaining members of our farm community.

Meet Our Milkers

Pictured Left: Dare 2 Dream Sophie; Right: Dare 2 Dream Emma

 

Stud Service Breeding Policies

  • $50 stud fee, includes a 2nd attempt within 2 months of first service if first attempt is unsuccessful. All further attempts require additional fee.

  • Current paperwork documenting health of the doe is required prior to service. Doe must be negative for CAE, CL, and Johnes.

  • Doe must be in good health and in heat at time of stud service appointment.

  • All stud services are driveway only; we do not board goats overnight and does are not allowed anywhere on farm property except for breeding pens.

  • Any and all equipment, vehicles, and people accompanying the doe must adhere to Dare 2 Dream bio-security guidelines. Please notify us regarding any of the above prior to appointment date for relevant bio-security guidelines. 

Contact Us 

For Booking Info.

Frequently asked questions

What is a Mini Nubian?


Mini Nubians are a new, experimental breed of dairy goat that was created from a combination of Standard Nubian and Nigerian Dwarf goats. This blending of breeds highlights some of the best characteristics of each type within a new breed known as Mini Nubians. The result after a few generations of breeding is a goat that looks like a Nubian, one of the largest dairy goat breeds, but is about half the size. This means Mini Nubians consume about half the feed volume of a full-sized Nubian but typically provide about 3/4 the milk volume of a Nubian, making Mini Nubians more desirable for small-scale dairy herds. The smaller size of Mini Nubians also makes them much easier to handle and milk than their full-sized relatives, a characteristic that can be credited to their other relatives, Nigerian Dwarf goats. The genetic link to Nigerian Dwarf goats also means a higher butterfat content in Mini Nubian milk as opposed to full-sized nubians, resulting in a milk that is great for making cheese and other processed dairy products.




How much milk does a Mini Nubian produce daily? What is it good for?


Milk production in goats varies with the time of year and the quality of herd management, as well as varying from goat to goat. Production starts with kidding season in the spring and peaks in the summer before declining in fall and finding it's lowest point in the winter. A well-managed doe that is in her first year of milk typically produces anywhere between a quart to a half gallon of milk. A seasoned doe will typically produce more, usually peaking at three-fourths to a full gallon of milk daily. In addition to drinking it, we use milk from our goats to make fresh, raw cheeses like chevre, feta, and paneer as well as homemade yogurt.




Are Dare 2 Dream dairy products available for purchase?


The FDA banned the interstate sale of raw mlk for human consumption in 1924 and has increased reglation incrementally over the years. Currently, raw milk is permitted for sale within California if it comes from healthy animals and meets dairy health inspection requirements. The milk produced by Dare 2 Dream Farms' goats is for personal consumption, so we are not a licensed commercial dairy. As a small scale home dairy operation (less than 15 goats), state dairy regulatiory inspections and expensive licensing is not required. We do have our own biological safety measures, including hand milking each of our goats to avoid bacterial contamination from mechanical milkers that are unneccessary at our scale. This allows us have greater control over sanitation without having to use antimicrobial solutions in our sanitation process. Instead, we sanitize all of our milking equipment by boiling everything prior to use. We also sanitize our milking area with bleach on a daily basis and keep our milking area outdoors for additional UV ray sanitiation when not in use. Federal law does, however, permit the sale of raw milk for animal consumption from home dairy operations. When we have excess milk on the farm, we do sometimes offer it for sale as pet food to local customers and neighbors. It is unlikely that we will increase the scale of our dairy herd to a commercial size to allow for commercial dairy sales but we do currently offer dairy goats for sale and will begin offering 'Backyard Dairy Goat Classes' in the spring of 2018 to accomodate others in our community who would like to be more connected to and in control of the sources of their own dairy consumption.




Does Dare 2 Dream Farms offer any classes on goats or cheesemaking?


We will begin offering classes on dairy goats starting in the spring of 2018, which will be targeted towards first-time goat owners starting their own small backyard dairy herds. These courses will be informational for those who are unsure if keeping goats is right for them and want to know what it may entail as well as for those who intend to start their own herds in the near future. We also have Mini Nubian dairy goats for sale and recommend these courses as a compliment to any goat purchases for first-time owners. In the summer of 2018, we will be offering classes on making homemade cheeses and other dairy products for those who have their own dairy herds as well as for those who wish to make cheese from commerically produced milk. These courses will provide an introduction to cheesemaking as well as demonstrations of various fresh cheeses that participants can make at home for their personal consumption.




How many goats will Dare 2 Dream Farms have for sale in 2018?


We currently have 2 purebred Mini Nubian bucks available for purchase and are expecting 3-4 additional kids from one of our does who is scheduled to deliver in April 2018. Up to 2 of the doelings will become members of our herd and any remaining kids will be offered for sale.




How do I purchase a Mini Nubian from Dare 2 Dream Farms?


The 2 purebred bucks we currently have for sale are listed on our website. They are both developed enough to take home on the date of purchase and are old enough to begin limited stud services immediately. We are also offering reservations on kids projected for our 2018 kidding season. Reservations are intended to hold potential kids for purchase and are not a guarantee of the sex or quanity of kids; projected kid availability is based on the breeding history of the does. Unfortunately, consistent sex identification of unborn kids is not currently available via ultrasound for goats so we will need to wait until April when the kids are born to know how many doelings and how many bucklings we will have. If you are interested in a kid from our herd, we do recommend reserving your specific interest (doeling or buckling) prior to April. Kid reservation requires a $60 deposit per goat that then goes towards the purchase price of the goat ($250/kid at 3-4 months). If our does fail to produce the desired kid you reserved (for example, a buckling instead of a doeling), the deposit will be refunded or rolled over to the next kidding season upon the buyer's request. Reserved kids will be available to take home after they are fully weaned from their mothers and have transitioned to solid feed. For kids born in April 2018, they will be fully weaned and ready to take home by July 2018, though they will still need a few months more of growing up before breeding them (A.K.A. 'freshening' so that they begin lactation). Hypothetically, if you purchase a kid from us in April 2018, you can take them home by July 2018, breed them around February if they are mature enough and then potentially have your own baby goats and a lactating mama goat by Summer 2019! While waiting for your goats we do recommend signing up for our goat care classes beginning in Spring 2018, especially if you are a first-time dairy goat owner. Classes will cover basic herd management, nutrition & health, breeding & kidding, milking practices, and much more intended to support you in your new adventure as a goatherder!





 
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