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Goodbye Horse, Hello Goat: Happy New Year!


goat toys for chinese new year

Happy New Year! No, we’re not two months too late. Thursday, February 19th marked the start of the longest holiday in China—Chinese New Year. We say farewell to last year’s Year of the Horse and usher in the Year of the Goat (get out of here, sheep!). This holiday, celebrated all over Asia, lasts for fifteen days. In honor of the Year of the Goat, we bring you some of the coolest, cutest, and most rambunctious goats from the interwebs along with some cool facts about one of culture‘s favorite ruminants. (Warning: This article contains cuteness overload.)

1. Goat’s eye pupils are rectangular instead of round.

goats have rectangular pupils

Photo Credit: Funny Junk

2. Goats were the first animals to be domesticated by humans in 10,000 B.C.E.

baby goat in a unicorn costume

Photo Credit: Buzzfeed via Facebook: eltfarms

3. Goats were also the first animals to be used for milk by humans, and worldwide, more people eat and drink milk from goats than from any other animal.

Mahatma Gandhi drank goat’s milk every day for thirty years!

baby goats together

Photo Credit: Buzzfeed via Tumblr

4. Goats are quite agile and can jump over 5 feet high. (The clip below shows just how jumpy baby goats can be. Oh my goodness… 0:54, we can’t even.)

5. Goat’s milk is higher in Calcium, Vitamin A, and Niacin than cow’s milk.

baby goat wearing a sweater

Guys, this baby goat is wearing a sweater! | Photo Credit: Express

6. Urban farmers are raising goats in the big city!

Goat-keeping is becoming as popular as keeping chickens and bees in many U.S. cities. In fact, the Chicago Tribune recently ran a story on these city-dwellin’, goat-raisin’ folk.

baby goat

Photo Credit: Pixgood

7. Have you seen pictures of goats in trees?

Goats are notorious for climbing the Argan trees in Morocco for the trees’ fruit. Undigested nuts from inside the fruit pass through the goat’s digestive system whole. The Berber people gather these nuts, crack them open and extract the highly sought-after argan oil that is commonly then used in beauty products all over the world. That’s right. Your “rejuvenating argan skin treatment?” Made with love out of goat poop.

goats climb trees in Morocco to eat fruit from argan trees

Photo Credit: Slate

8. Healthy baby goats (called kids) can stand almost immediately after they’re born.

small goat next to soda can

Literally the cutest thing we’ve ever seen. | Photo Credit: Weed Em and Reap

9. It is thought that goats were the first to discover coffee after a farmer noticed that his goats were more energetic after they’d nibbled on some coffee bean plants.

Kaldi, Goats, and the Discovery of Coffee

10. Presidents love goats.

Abraham Lincoln supposedly kept two pet goats, Nanny and Nanko, in the White House. One time, JFK led a goat around Bunker Hill. I guess goats don’t like the Duck Boats.

JFK leads a goat around Bunker Hill

John F. Kennedy leads goat around Bunker Hill Monument. | Photo Credit: JFK Library

Lest you’d like to celebrate the fledgling days of the Year of the Goat, we’ve got a whole Cheese Library full of goat’s (and other) milk cheese. And if you’d like more baby goats in your life, this site collects picture of baby goats galore. We’re sure your boss won’t mind your Googling “baby goats” today. You deserve it. Happy New Year!

Feature Photo Credit: AliExpress.com

Michelina DelGizzi

Michelina DelGizzi, MS, MPH, is a writer and caseophile based in Boston and Lafayette, La.