Breed Standard

 An English goat must be first and foremost a sound animal with no features which appear likely to interfere with its health and productivity.

UDDER: well attached and level, elastic, silky, not fleshy.

TEATS: well spaced, of even size and pointed slightly forward.

LEGS: strong and straight, hocks not turned in.

MOUTH: teeth normal: not overshot or undershot.

GENITALS: suitably correct.

BODY: sturdy and deep with well-sprung ribs and strong loins. Rectangular when viewed from the side or above. Back level.

HEAD: neat and tapering to a moderately fine muzzle. Frontal bone prominent. Facial profile straight or concave, not convex.

Moderate beard in females, heavy in males.

Horns, if not disbudded or naturally polled, rising slightly at first with an inclination to the rear then branching outward.

Ears neither erect nor pendulous but approaching the horizontal position pointing forward.

OUTER COAT: Females: fairly short and dense. Sometimes there is a longer fringe along the back, on the flanks, and thicker tufts on the legs.

Males: much longer, particularly on the back, neck, chest and thighs.

UNDER COAT: On parting the hair an inner coat of fine soft wool is seen. This is often sparse or absent in Spring and Summer.

COLOUR: Variable, usually shades of brown or grey with characteristic markings, i.e. eel stripe (dark line along back) and associated leg, neck and flank markings. These must be present at least to the extent of a definite eel stripe, even if this is incomplete. White patches are permitted. Swiss type face markings should preferably be absent or indistinct, but do not disqualify.

TASSELS: naturally absent.

BEHAVIOUR: In addition to the physical conformation and characteristics, the behaviour of the English goat is of importance and interest to its keepers.

It has a good conversion rate of milk and meat throughout the year.

It is keen to eat a wide range of wild and crop food, i.e. not faddy. It is not put off foraging by the British climate.

It is content with water at ambient temperatures. It will generally milk through two years. It is tractable, docile, but capricious, naturally.