Some people regard their pet as a companion, a friend or even a family member. Unlike humans, pets are not able to talk or communicate verbally. For common home animals like cats and dogs, they show affection by cuddling or following you all around the home. What if your pet is a goat, have you ever wondered how do goats show affection? Isn’t it a wonderful feeling to be able to speak their language? Let’s read the article below to find out.
*This post may have affiliate links, which means I may receive commissions if you choose to purchase through links I provide (at no extra cost to you). As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases. Please read my disclaimer for additional details.
How do goats show affection with humans?
Of course, goats can’t express their affection by saying “I like you, I love you” as we often do. So how do you tell if a goat likes you?
They use their body, eyes, interaction initiation, and many more to show their love. Scientifically, there are several ways to detect their emotions.
Staring eyes at human
With this, goats are quite similar to dogs. Whenever they come up and stare at you, there are two possible reasons.
Firstly, they use their eyes to convey their needs. Perhaps they can’t figure out something or they are feeling uncomfortable, staring accompanied by body cues show that they are in desperate need of support.
Secondly, they want to influence behavior such as desiring a treat or simply letting you know that they love you. These behaviors are defined as “audience-dependent human-directed visual orientation behavior”.
Want to be your pet
You might not know that goats love to be pet. While dogs enjoy being pet on the head or down the back, goats prefer to be pet on their front chest and underarms. The closer they are to you, the less timidly they ask to be pet.
They are not hesitant to come near you, and sometimes rub against you to attract your attention. You may also experience a mob mentality. It means if other goats notice you have just pet a goat, they will all swarm you to receive pets but in a gentle way.
For this, they are not different from humans as physical touch is one of our ways to show affection.
Showing their body language
Do goats remember you? Yes, they do. If you see that the goat ears are raising up, it means that goat is delightful. Why? They perk up their ears as soon as they see their favorite human approaching them even when they are foraging for food in the field. That’s a show of their exhilaration and strong affection towards you.
For people who first raise a goat, they often mistake their sounds as bleats and cries. However, it turns out they are likely to produce those sounds when they see their favorite human.
Such sounds are called a stable bleat of joy, a positive sign of happiness. If the sounds are both high-pitched and low-pitched, they are signaling to you for their discomfort. Be patient and constantly listen for consistent pitch to recognize their vocal cues of affection.
If such signals are found, it means that your goat is affectionate towards you. Other actions such as head butting, biting, charging, and so on are signs of aggression, which means they are not happy with you.
Suggest for you: What is the best fencing for Goats?
How do goats show affection with other goats?
You can sense a deep emotional intimacy between goats when they huddle up and cuddle each other or a good relationship if you see them eating, sleeping, and chilling together.
That is a good sign.
Yet it doesn’t mean there is no hierarchy among them. As they are still herding animals, common pecking order mentalities is there to make sure they live in peaceful coexistence.
Other interesting things about goats
Goats are emotional
Goats are found to be more emotional than many people realize.
Research that studied animals’ behavioral and physiological reactions was published in Frontiers in Zoology suggested that goats could distinguish calls from their friends. Evidence was shown by their heart-rate variability. It was higher when they heard positive calls and vice versa.
Read more: How to choose the Best Goat Milker?
Goats love happy faces
They adore cheerful facial expressions. This is concluded in an experiment in which researchers display photos of the same face with opposite emotional valences (positive/happy or negative/angry) on a wall.
The goats are free to wander, explore, and see the photos. What researchers initially learned from the experiment was that goats were more likely to approach, stop at positive faces for a long time, and tended to run away from negative emotional cues.
In fact, goats have a richer emotional life than we may know and are quite similar to humans. They love physical touches, smiley faces, and are happy to be around their favorite person and fellow goats. They make sounds to let us know their feelings. By reading the article on how do goats show affection above, we hope that you can understand your pets better.