‘Capra’ means ‘goat’ in Italian. So what are ‘capre nane’ – nanny goats? No, ‘nano’ means ‘dwarf’ so we’re talking about ‘dwarf goats’ – (AKA pygmy goats).
Longoio used to have these goats which were tended by a certain Giacomo, now sadly departed. The little ones were a delightful adjunct to the domestic scene in our village and, looking back at these photos taken in November 2005, I can only regret that the caprette no longer wander about our fields.
Capre Nane or Caprette are today more and more regarded as companions rather than just farmyard animals. The trend is increasingly to have them as pets grazing in one’s garden (mind the flowers…) rather than having them bred for their milk or meat (or, until quite recently, for their wool). A dwarf goat, in fact, doesn’t give enough milk for the needs even of a single family, and certainly it wouldn’t (luckily!) provide for a Sunday roast.
Now should I get one to keep my grass down next growing season?
(PS Miniature goats are sometimes known as Tibetan goats. They are also called African goats since they originated in present-day Somalia).