Breed character and heads : LUSENET : Dairygoats : One Thread

I was thinking about this yesterday while feeding my goats. I had always thought that the dished face was more beautiful and attractive, and better breed character than a straight face. I was proud of my buck because not only did he improve what I wanted him to, he also added his lovely dished head. Another breeder then pointed out to me that Alpines are not supposed to have a dished face, it should be straight according to the ADGA breed standards. I looked in the ADGA guidebook and she was right! There is not a single word about the Alpine head being dished.

I decided that I don't care. I am going to go right on breeding for a pretty head. Ugly, plain, and coarse heads are something that I cull for. Not only do I not want to look at plain heads day after day, but the refinement of the head often says a lot about the quality of the animal. Too often, the doe kids with the homely faces were the ones who didn't turn out well.

How do you feel about heads and breed character?

-- Rebekah (, December 15, 2001


Thats a really good question Rebehak. I was told that dish faced Alpines were acceptable yrs ago and then recently there was mention that the dish face was frowned upon. Sooooo.... I guess I am not sure about the faces and heads on Alpines yet. I do recall owning a doe kid who was given a near perfect face when we had her LA'd.

Saturday night I tried to post to the question here and Lusenet went down. I did happen on some interesting websites while i was researching commercial dairies about Alpines and breed characters. I pasted the links below. See what you think about the information.

-- Bernice (, December 17, 2001.

Thanks Bernice, I'll take a look at that. The Sodium Oaks lines seem to pass on that dished face, so there is no way I am going to give it up!!

-- Rebekah (, December 17, 2001.

I looked at the sites, the descriptions of the breed deifferences was funny- Saanens are large, kind and friendly goats, usually white!! No mention of the fantastic amounts of milk! Also loved the 'Pitfalls to Avoid' list on the first site, think I will add it to the links on my web site.
Anyway, all the other swiss breeds- Saanen, Togg, Oberhasli, have breed standards that say the face is dished or straight. Alpines are the only one that simply say- the face is straight. I would agree that most Alpines have a straight face, and that many have a 'horsey' head. But does a nice dished face have to be a fault?

-- Rebekah (, December 17, 2001.

I was a fanatic on faces with our LaMancha's perhaps because you can't worry to much about their ears. But I wanted a strong muzzel and lots of width between the eyes, my daughters thought I was nuts, and never saw what I did! Now with Nubians, our Price of the Field influenced stock has very good roman noses, but ears to die for are not something you see much around here. A little to short, a little to thick, nothing that we have every been discounted for in the ring but its there. Vicki

-- Vicki McGaugh TX (, December 18, 2001.

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