"United we bargain, divided we beg."

Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Goat News, Good and Bad

Yesterday afternoon I took the sick little goatling to the vet to be put down. For a while it looked like she was going to recover from her hypothermia - she stood up, nursed from her mother with a little help, and was swallowing the milk I dribbled into her with a syringe. But then she began to have copious, watery diarrhea, her eyes took on a sunken appearance, she whimpered constantly as though in pain, and when I took her back out to her mother to have another go at nursing, she clearly didn't know what was going on. She just stood there feebly, and her mother kicked her.

There was nothing left to do, so we put her down and I buried her out back by the beehives. It was such a small grave, it only took me a few minutes to dig. Luckily, the other two babies are just fine. The weather has taken such a cold turn - and it is expected to be even colder over the next week - that I decided to keep Iris and her babies locked in the mama barn and run a heat lamp out there. A heat lamp in a barn full of hay makes me very nervous, but I can string it up so it hangs from the ceiling far from the hay.

The good news is that I have now sold all three goats that I had for sale. Funnily enough, they are both long distance sales, from people who were specifically looking for spotted Nubians. The man who bought the babies bought them for his elderly mother, who talks about the beautiful spotted goats she used to have when she was a girl in Greece. I thought that was so sweet! The babies will be going to Ellensberg as soon as they are 8 weeks old, and Storm Cloud, my buck, is going to Oregon. In fact, I will be transporting him there myself, because the lady who bought him offered to pay me to transport him, and I have a couple of good girlfriends I'd like to visit near his destination. It's like a free mini-vacation!

I'm kind of sorry Cloud will be going so far away. I won't find a better buck anytime soon, and I always had it in the back of my mind that whenever I acquired some new does, I'd use Cloud as my herdsire again. I am happy, however, that he is going to be lord of a new domain, herdsire to a whole harem of pretty Nubian does. He has a nice life ahead of him.

The death of the baby goat causes me a new problem. Now that I have sold Iris' other two babies, six weeks hence Iris will have no babies at all and I will once again be chained to the milking stand for months, a situation I wanted to avoid this year. Oh well, there are worse problems to have than too much goat milk.


Sunray Gardening said...

Sorry for your loss. It's always difficult with things like this.
Goldenray Yorkies

Nekkid Chicken said...

Awe Honey, So sad & sorry for the loss of a precious baby.