Technical Services

Read on behaviors that signal a goat in heat

When a doe goes into heat, this is a sign that her body is ready to breed, therefore, females exhibit certain behaviors that signal males. This heat episode can last anywhere from a few hours up to four days. It’s more typical to see these briefer heats in younger does.

Understanding the signs of a goat in heat can help owners take measures to either prevent pregnancy or to provide breeding opportunities with a male goat or “buck.”
Here is the list of signs a goat is in heat:
1) First, start paying extra attention to each doe while she is on the milk stand. You want to know what she “normally” looks and acts like. This way, when her behavior changes, you will know.
2) Extra tail wagging – you have probably noticed that your goats will wag their tails some while eating, scratching etc. We weren’t sure that this would be easy to spot, I mean what constitutes as “extra”? Well, if you have been doing #1 above, you will likely know what “extra” is. It is obvious that the does wag their tails more. They also wag them at different times like while they were eating their milk stand treat.
3) Swelling – often times when a doe is in heat you will notice her vulva (“lady parts” if we are being polite) will become swollen. By knowing what she usually looks like, it will be easier to see if she is swollen.
4) Discharge – your doe will likely have some vaginal discharge when she comes into heat. You may notice it just on her “lady parts”, but it can also end up on the underside of her tail and tail hair.
5) More Vocal – Goats are all relatively quiet. However, during heat cycles, does will many times become more vocal.
6) Wether detectors – if you have a wether in with your does, they may also be able to help you detect if your does are in heat. Wethers (even though they aren’t in tact) will often start to exhibit buck-like behavior — curling lips, clicking noises, mounting — towards the does in heat.

Source: Farmers trend