Historically correct goats mean that they match the breed standard. It means that they have been evaluated prior to being registered and that they have passed all the requirements! It means that the bloodlines have been checked for accuracy to the best of The American Fainting Goat Organizations ability with the information that has been given to AFGO.
The bloodlines are important because as we already know there are some of the newer lines that have NEVER been correct while other older lines were once correct but are no longer correct because breeders have changed their breeding focuses away from the Fainting goat standard. This is most often done to grow goats that are bigger and meatier for the show ring or for the market place. It is sometimes done as breeders try to breed for the smaller versions without keeping the purity. It can also be done as breeders strive for things like a particular hair color, hair coat, and eye color. Because of these factors each goat must be evaluated separately. You can no longer say that if a goat comes from a certain herd that it will be historically correct. In much the same way that you cannot say that all goats coming from a certain herd are NOT historically correct!
Just because a goat has been registered in the past by a different registry does not mean that it is historically correct. In the past many goats have been registered that didn't meet the breed standard. This has harmed the breed and confused breeders. This is the reason why the true historically correct goats may still be endangered. This is why all goats that are registered with AFGO must go through an evaluation prior to being registered. Even baby goats with both parents register with AFGO are still evaluated. AFGO is here to ensure that only the goats that meet the requirements are certified as historically correct goats. We take certifying our goats very seriously.
So what does AFGO look for to evaluate a goat and then certify them as historically correct? Well first of all the goat must show some sign of Faint-Ability. This is what the goats became well known for. Buyers want goats that "faint". Yes that may be somewhat of a novelty, but that is one of their most distinguished characteristics. It made them popular. It gives them the muscular appearance. It makes them easy to handle. I makes them easy to keep in a fence. Why would you want a Fainting goat that had no signs of Faint-Ability? Now the only way that AFGO knows the degree of Faint-Ability is from the owner. AFGO must take their word on that.
The other thing that the breed is noted for is their head. It is another very distinguishing characteristic of the breed. AFGO looks at the ears to see if they match the standard. The ears must be medium in length and width and usually are held in an outward or forward direction. They will not allow a floppy or down style of ear to be registered.
Babies may be refused certification because sometimes their ears may take a while to develop the cartridges needed to hold them up. If this happens the goat can be re-submitted at a later age for another evaluation. Most of the time babies ears will be correct by weaning age. Most babies never have a problem with their ears.
The eyes should be what we refer to as buggy. The buggy eyes are almost a thing of the past. This has been breed out of so many Fainting goats.
The facial profile again is a characteristic that the breed is known for. They will have a slightly dished face. Some may appear straighter than others but they will never have a Roman nose.
Good muscling is another characteristic that these goats will have. There are many factors that will effect the amount of muscling that these goats have such as good nutrition and herd management. A goat will not be denied certification because it is lacking muscle. With a little good TLC this will come. Fainting goats will not have the huge briskets that you see on the Boer goats. They are not a massive goat. They are a nicely built goat however.
AFGO believes that the historically correct goats are a small to medium size goat. If they are too small or if they are too large we believe that they will lose some of the characteristics of the Fainting goat. It is because of this that we do not have a height limit set.
AFGO doesn't promise to always be perfect. We may miss something from time to time, but we always give it our best. We want the breed to survive for future generations. We want to be proud of those goats selected for certification. If you want to know that your goat is historically correct I would ask you to visit us at www.americanfaintinggoat.com