Choosing a herd name

When I became serious about buying my dairy goats, I decided to buy registered animals.  It has since been pointed out that it costs the same to feed a high quality animal as it does to feed one of lower or unknown quality, further validating my decision.  Although registered goats would be more expensive, I would know their background and would not risk breeding one of my girls to her dad or brother.  Later I would discover knowing their pedigree also gave me an advantage to breed for the best chance of having kids to become good dairy goats.  It allows you to research the milking abilities of the doe’s line and the potential buck’s line.  These girls are here for both milk and wonderful pets.  Eventually, some need to be sold so providing information about their genetic background helps to get a better selling price (and decreases the chance they will wind up in a freezer).

When I bought my first two goats, I realized as soon as the first kidding, that a short herd name is better since the registry, very practically, limits the animal’s name to 32 letters.  Any baby born carries, as the first part of its registered name, the herd name of the owner of the doe when she was bred.  That herd name of the owner of my doe when she was bred was thirteen letters long which gave less leeway for a name.  That showed me something shorter might be better.

It seemed prudent to ask others what they thought for more input and more ideas.  There were several very nice suggestions, but none seemed to be “just right.”  This decision would be following every kid born to my does so I wanted it to be a good choice.  I believe short and sweet for names is important.  Something easy to remember and “catchy” is best.  A shorter herd name gives the buyer much more “space” for a name they choose.  Once the buyer has chosen (and made a deposit) on one of my kids, if that kid has not yet been registered, they choose the name for registration if they want to.  Of course, the call name (chosen after the kid is in its new home) does not need to match the registered name.

After several weeks of considering, I was still trying to find one that was short, easy and meaningful.  My decision would be a combination of the town where my family lived when I was born and my life began and part of the name of the city where I would be living when my own life was finished.  The beginning and the end – Eden and Van, EdenVan – but that didn’t sound good at all.  Because I am trying to live my life fully I decided the now, where I am and the goats are, should be first.  That is how VanEden came about, short and easy to remember while leaving plenty of letter spaces for official names of the babies.


1 Comment (+add yours?)

  1. Becky
    Jan 14, 2015 @ 13:27:56




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