and then there were four

I have been getting ahead of myself with the chickens. But I have goat updates. A couple of months ago I opened up Craigslist again, and yes, there were a pair of ADGA registered doelings. They were about 3 hours away, so a real road trip. Plans were made with the owner to meet her on Saturday morning at her farm.

Farm is sort of an understatement. When we got there we found a goat heaven. Hundreds of goats. So many babies, she was bottle feeding over 100 kids per day. And she had a bit of a hoarding problem, she can’t get rid of any of them. Even when had the goats in the truck, she still wasn’t sure she could get rid of them. So she has her hands full.

And we have Cleo and Delores.

I must admit, up to this point I had never touched a goat. We had Bernice and Agnes, but I had never held them, never spent anytime up close to them to get to know them. Cleo and Delores were different. While Bernice and Agnes grew up with their mother, they never learned how to interact with people. Cleo and Delores were bottle babies and came to know and rely on people. And love them. It turns out both of them were still bottle babies (we didn’t learn that until we had already driven the 3 hours to get there). So after a quick stop at the farm store we had nipples and milk replacer and were ready to go.

Instead of running around and busting through fences, these girls loved to be held.

But bottle feeding babies is not as fun as it sounds. First, they start crying. I can hear them from the house and they are in the barn just crying and crying. And then when they get the bottle, holy cow, stand back. They are nuts. They just slam it, the whole thing, without stopping. Very aggressive. And then they want to be held.

That didn’t last so long. Maybe a couple of weeks. Now they are eating goat food and whatever else they can find. There was a tiny bit of integration problem with them as well. Agnes and Bernice were the mean girls. However we have learned that some of what we were seeing (head butting, etc ) is just how goats play.

So now I have 4 goats. Do the math, if each has 3 babies (which is pretty common, but could have up to 5) … that is a lot of goat babies. Lot’s of bottles. FarmBoy can’t wait.

We will breed two of them this Fall. They will have their babies in April some time. Once they have given birth we will breed the other two to birth in the fall. A mother goat has to have a baby to give milk. So by doing a spring and fall breeding, we can make sure two of the goats will always be giving us milk.

Cleo –

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