Appenzell goat is found mainly in the cantons of Appenzell and Saint Gallen, in Switzerland. The name of this race comes from its city of origin. The origin of this race is cited at the beginning of the 1900s. Today this somewhat peculiar breed is in danger of extinction. That is why projects have been created in which they propose the recovery and improvement of the race. One of the proposals is to be able to guarantee and give support to those breeders who have implemented measures to improve the breed. To date, there are around 2.000 heads of this species.
Characteristics of Appenzell Goat:
Appenzell goat is a goat whose coat is white without any spot or another color, which is usually of medium length. It has a very strong body, and a structure harmoniously. The members are strong and well-positioned. In addition, the body is somewhat wider and rounder than that of the Saanen goat and somewhat smaller. The height at the withers varies between 75 and 85 centimeters, and between 70 and 80 centimeters in the females.
The male specimens weigh an average of 60 to 65 kilograms and the female approximately 40 and 45 kilograms. In dairy production, the Appenzell goat is on a par with other breeds. It can usually produce between 600 and 800 kilograms of milk. Producing this amount of milk in a period of more or less 270 days, which corresponds to the period of lactation. As is known, milk production is highly influenced by aspects such as the management and care of the goat.
The white goat of Appenzell looks a lot like Saanen’s; but these two races should not be considered as one, as often happens. The hair is long on the back of the thighs. The head of the Appenzell goat is shorter and thicker than that of Saanen.
On several occasions, the Appenzell goat breeders have declared that their animals are not related to the Saanen goats. The color is pure white. In the old paintings of the region of Appenzell white goats are always noticed. In size and weight are these goats inferior to those of Saanen? The milk is very tasty.
In general, the Appenzell goat is used as a dairy goat, and this is due to its high milk yields. And because of its tranquility, it is a breed that can be had as a pet.
Due to its zone of origin, and to the places inhabited by the Appenzell goat, it can feed on intense grazing. Obtaining its main food source of grass, flowers, and some food available from the surrounding environment. However, being a dairy goat needs certain strengths of energy, breeders usually must complete their diet with nutrients.
At the beginning of 1900, a Society was founded in order to raise the Appenzell goat and maintain the white and native race without horns. And thus be able to keep the race in its purest state, also trying to refine it. For this purpose, society wants to encourage exploitation.
The partners are obliged not to sell the animals from 1 to 2 years of age, in order to obtain a good line that meets their own needs. The introduction of other new breeds is not allowed. As in the export are prefer, now, the animals of short hair, the breeders try to please their clients.
In addition, there are in Switzerland the following varieties of the goat besides the Appenzell goat. The Saanen goats of Hessen, of Heppeilheim, of Gross Umstadt, of Rimbach, Lauterbach, Francoforte; those of Tauno de Saxony and Baden.