Spanish goats, also known as brush goats, are a medium-sized meat and dairy goat breed. On average, mature Spanish goats weigh between 50-100 lbs for does and 100-250 lbs for bucks. However, Spanish goat weights can vary considerably based on age, gender, genetics, diet, and health status.
Typical Spanish Goat Weights by Age
Newborn Spanish goat kids typically weigh between 5-10 lbs at birth. As kids grow, their weight rapidly increases. Here are some average Spanish goat weights by age:
- 1 month old – 25 lbs
- 3 months old – 40 lbs
- 6 months old – 60 lbs
- 9 months old – 75 lbs
- 12 months old – 90 lbs
Once Spanish goats reach adulthood at around 12-18 months old, does will weigh between 50-100 lbs and bucks between 100-250 lbs on average.
Average Mature Spanish Doe Weights
Mature female Spanish goats, called does, generally weigh between 50-100 lbs on average. Here are some factors that affect doe weight:
- Age – Does reach their maximum weight potential around 3-5 years old.
- Genetics – Some bloodlines produce naturally larger or smaller does.
- Body Condition – Does in optimal body condition will weigh more than thin does.
- Pregnancy Status – Pregnant does gain extra weight.
- Milking Status – Heavy milking does can lose weight.
- Health – Sick does often lose weight.
- Feeding – Does fed higher quality diets tend to reach heavier weights.
The typical weight range for mature Spanish does is 50-100 lbs. However, it is not unusual for especially large does to reach weights up to 125 lbs if genetically predisposed and fed very well. Conversely, smaller Spanish does may only weigh as little as 40 lbs.
Average Mature Spanish Buck Weights
Mature male Spanish goats, called bucks, generally weigh between 100-250 lbs. However, there is greater variation in buck size than does. Here are some factors affecting buck weight:
- Age – Bucks reach their maximum weight potential around 2-3 years old.
- Genetics – Some bloodlines produce much larger bucks.
- Body Condition – Well-fed bucks can become quite massive.
- Muscling – Heavily muscled bucks weigh more.
- Health Status – Illness can cause bucks to lose weight.
- Feeding – Bucks fed high protein, high energy diets reach heavier weights.
While the average mature Spanish buck weighs 100-250 lbs, weights upwards of 300 lbs are not uncommon, especially in outstanding individuals. On the other hand, smaller Spanish bucks may only weigh around 75 lbs.
Average Weights by Use
Spanish goats raised for different purposes may have slightly different average weights. Here are typical weights by use:
- Meat Goats – 100-150 lbs (does), 150-250 lbs (bucks)
- Dairy Goats – 75-100 lbs (does), 150-225 lbs (bucks)
- Show Goats – 90-120 lbs (does), 175-275+ lbs (bucks)
- Brush Goats – 60-100 lbs (does), 100-200 lbs (bucks)
- Pack Goats – 90-130 lbs (does), 130-180 lbs (bucks)
- Pets – 50-100 lbs (does), 100-250 lbs (bucks)
Goats used for meat production, showing, and packing tend to be bred for larger body sizes and therefore heavier weights compared to goats used for brush control or as pets.
Weight Comparisons to Other Goat Breeds
Compared to other meat and dairy goat breeds, Spanish goats are medium in size:
|Breed||Average Doe Weight||Average Buck Weight|
|Nigerian Dwarf||50-75 lbs||100-150 lbs|
|Spanish||50-100 lbs||100-250 lbs|
|Boer||90-135 lbs||170-250 lbs|
|Toggenburg||120-170 lbs||170-250 lbs|
As the table illustrates, Spanish does are similar in weight to smaller breeds like Nigerian Dwarves but smaller on average compared to larger dairy goat breeds like Toggenburgs. Spanish bucks cover a wider range depending on genetics and breeding goals but are generally smaller than the very large Boer breed.
Tracking and Managing Weight
It is important for goat owners to monitor and manage the weight of their Spanish goats. Here are some tips:
- Weigh young goats monthly to track growth rates.
- Body condition score adult goats to monitor fitness.
- Adjust feed quantities and nutrition to maintain ideal weight.
- Separate bucks, does, and wethers into groups with similar nutritional needs.
- Weigh goat kids at birth and continue monitoring weights.
- Keep detailed records of weights and growth for the herd.
- Consult with a veterinarian if animals are losing weight.
Keeping Spanish goats within an optimal weight range for their age, gender, and purpose will maximize productivity and health. Any sudden changes in weight should be addressed promptly.
Typical Market Weights
Spanish goats raised for meat are often marketed and slaughtered at specific target weights to produce desirable carcass sizes. Typical market weights are:
- Kid goats – 50-70 lbs live weight
- Yearling goats – 90-120 lbs live weight
- Mature goats – 130-180 lbs live weight
Within the meat industry, prices are often set based on live weights at the time of sale. Lighter weight classes receive lower prices per pound than heavier goats.
While the only way to get an exact weight is to use a scale, goat owners can also visually estimate the weight of their animals. Some methods include:
- Body condition scoring on a scale of 1-5 and comparing to average weights for that condition.
- Measuring heart girth (chest circumference) and comparing to weight estimation tables.
- Estimating based on weights of herd mates of similar size and build.
- Comparing overall body size and stature relative to goats of known weights.
- Lifting smaller goats to gauge heft; mature bucks are difficult to lift safely.
Although visual estimation is not perfectly accurate, it can provide a ballpark figure for tracking trends over time. Weighing goats periodically helps calibrate visual estimates.
Factors That Influence Weight
Many factors beyond age and gender affect a goat’s weight. These include:
Some bloodlines naturally produce larger, growthier goats. Selective breeding can increase or decrease average weights over generations.
A high plane of nutrition with ample calories, protein, vitamins, and minerals allows goats to reach their genetic potential for growth and weight gain. Underfed goats will be lighter.
Sick goats often exhibit weight loss and failure to thrive. Internal parasites can also depress weight gains.
Does gaining weight during gestation and losing weight during heavy lactation will go through weight fluctuations.
Heavily muscled goats have more weight as muscle than goats with slight builds.
Goats with thicker bones and larger frames will often weigh more than finer-boned goats.
Goats in fleshier condition with more fat cover will be heavier than thin goats.
Goats with opportunities to exercise may build more muscle and be heavier than sedentary goats.
Fluctuations in nutrition and activity with the seasons can cause weight patterns over the year.
Goats gain weight rapidly as they grow from birth to maturity, then level off or gain gradually.
Stress from extreme heat or cold due to poor housing depresses weight.
Tips for Healthy Weights
Here are some tips for maintaining healthy weights for Spanish goats:
- Provide adequate good quality forage along with balanced grain/supplement feeding.
- Supply plenty of clean, fresh water at all times.
- Develop herd health programs to prevent parasites and diseases.
- Avoid stressful conditions like overcrowding that depress weight.
- Implement an appropriate breeding, birthing, and weaning schedule.
- Separate goats into groups with similar nutritional needs.
- Weigh monthly and monitor for any weight issues.
- Adjust nutrition and management as needed to reach weight goals.
Spanish goats are a medium-sized meat and dairy breed with does weighing around 50-100 lbs on average and bucks 100-250 lbs. Exact weights depend on genetics, health, nutrition, purpose, age, and many other factors. Monitoring and managing weights is important for optimizing production and animal health. With good care, Spanish goats can thrive and achieve excellent weights within their genetic capabilities.