Damascus Goat Characteristics, Origin, Uses

The Damascus goat is a breed of domestic goat generally used for milk production. It is mainly raised in Cyprus, Lebanon and Syria. The breed is also known by some other names such as Aleppo, Baladi, Chami, Damascene, Halep or Shami.

The Damascus goat is a native breed of the Middle East, and it has been raised in big herds throughout the region. This goats were exported by the British at some time in the nineteenth Century.

They were taken to Cyprus where they were then bred and raised in large numbers. It was during this time that the breed picked up the name “Damascus“.

The Damascus goat was mentioned in many classics of Arabic literature. In fact, the breed appear in the religions and folklore of the region as well.

Because of being noble and having striking characteristics, the Damascus goat was used for creating many other goat breeds. And there has been interest in the breeding and genetics of this goat.

A Damascus goat named Qahr won the first prize for the “Most Beautiful Goat” title at the Mazayen al-Maaz competition in Riyadh on June 13, 2008. Read more information about this goat breed below.

Table of Contents

Damascus Goat Information

Damascus is a very common and popular goat in Cyprus. It was first imparted to Cyprus from Middle East countries. And quality of the breed has improved by breeding in Cyprus. Some people call Damascus as the ‘bulldog’ of goats, mainly due to it’s appearance.

However, it is a multi-purpose breed and used for meat, milk and hide. Here we are trying to describe more information about this goat breed.

Physical Characteristics

The Damascus is a large goat in size, and are of the Nubian type. They are usually red or brown in color, but can also be seen in pied or grey color. They are usually long haired. They can be either horned or polled.

Fully grown Damascus goats have a long neck and long legs. Their head is relatively small. Like most other goats, the Damascus bucks are usually larger and heavier than the does.

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The bucks on average weight about 70-90 kg. And average weight of the does is about 50-60kg. Photo from SheepFarm & info from The Goat Guide.

Uses

Damascus is a dairy goat breed and mainly used for milk production. But they are valued not only for milk, but also for meat. They are highly meat productive. They are also good for hair and fine leather production.

Feeding

These goats are large in size. So, they generally require large housing system. On an average, 15 square feet space per goat will be sufficient. Like all other goat breeds, these goats also prefer clean and dry place to stay.

So, always try to keep their housing system dry and clean. Also ensure good ventilation system inside their house. You can install big windows while building the house or shelter for them. And try to make the as comfortable as you can for the goats.

Feeding

This is the most important part of raising such a large goat like Damascus. You must have to feed them good quality and nutritious food for keeping them healthy, active and productive. Along with meat production Damascus is also good for producing milk. So, try to add adequate greens in their diet for good milk production. And always provide them with clean and fresh water as per their demand.

Breeding

These goats are naturally very good breeders. Natural breeding is generally practiced for these goats. One buck is generally enough for breeding up to 30 does.

Caring

Damascus goats are very strong and hardy and they generally require less caring and other management. Although, taking additional caring will help the goats to stay healthy and grow better. Vaccinate your goats timely and provide the with de-worming medicines on a regular basis. Try to take extra care of the breeding buck, pregnant and nursing does.

Marketing

Marketing goat products or live goats is not a problem. You can easily sell your products in the local market. You can also target online classified websites for selling your goats. These goats are generally sold at high prices in the market. However, you should determine your marketing strategies before starting raising these goats.

Special Notes

The Damascus goat is described as being noble, and having striking characteristics. They are very beautiful and used in the creation of many other popular goat breeds. The does can give birth of three to four kids per kidding, if given the proper care.

The does are pretty good milk producers. On average the does can produce up to 1.5 kg milk daily. The milk of the Damascus goat is noted for being extremely easy to digest for anyone who may have issues digesting more normal dairy products.

They are usually of good behavior and have relatively calm temperament. Review full breed profile of the Damascus goat in the following chart.

Breed NameDamascus
Other NameThe breed is also known as Aleppo, Baladi, Chami, Damascene, Halep or Shami.
Breed PurposeMilk
Breed SizeLarge
BuckAbout 70-90 kg
DoeAbout 50-60 kg
HornsCan be either horned or polled
Climate ToleranceAll Climates
Coat ColorUsually red or brown in color, but can also be seen in pied or grey.
Good for Stall FedNot Sure
RarityCommon
Country/Place of OriginSyria

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

People often ask some questions regarding the Damascus goats, especially the beginner goat farmers. Here we are trying to answer the most common questions about this breed. We hope you will find your answer. But if not, don’t hesitate to ask.

Where does the Damascus goat originated from?

Syria. It is native to Syria and other Near East countries. Today, many goats are also found in Cyprus.

What is purpose of Damascus goat?

The Damascus is actually a multi-purpose goat breed. These goats are good for both meat and milk production. They are also good for hair and fine leather production.

How much is a Damascus goat?

Damascus goat price can vary from place to place. Crossbred are inexpensive, but sometimes a purebred goat may cost around or up to $5000.

Do Damascus goat have horns?

YES! They have horns, but they can also be polled.

Why do Damascus goats look like that?

Damascus goats are born with extremely long, flowing ears. Their faces are actually more normal-shaped as young animals, which is lucky because they need normal faces in order to nurse from their mothers. It’s only later in life that they start to look like they ran into a door.

Damascus goat color?

They are generally a reddish-brown, but there are quite a few color variations available including a silver-white, white, fawn and grey.

What is Damascus goat scientific name?

Damascus goat scientific name is “Capra aegagrus hircus“.

What is a Damascus goat mixed with?

Damascus goats in India are used to crossbreed with Boer goats and Sirohi goats.

Are Damascus goats healthy?

YES! They are very hardy and healthy breed. And there are no known health issues within the breed.

Where can I find Damascus goat for sale?

Please search your local livestock market. Also try searching your local online classified websites.

How about Damascus goat size?

The Damascus goats are large in size. Average body weight of the mature buck is between 70 and 90 kg. And average body weight of a doe is between 50 and 60 kg.

How long do a Damascus goat live?

Average lifespan of a Damascus goat is around or up to 12 years.

What is the largest breed of goat?

Boer goats. Boer goats are the largest of the goat breeds.

How to start Damascus goat farming business?

Damascus goat farming is just like raising other common goat breeds. You have to purchase good quality goats, make a good shelter for them, feed them nutritious food and always try to take good care of them.

Is Damascus goat farming profitable?

YES, definitely! Raising these goats is very easy. They have little or no health issues. They are also highly prized in the market. So, raising them commercially will be highly profitable.

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