Saturday, October 6, 2012

A Love Story (of sorts)

 This is a story of a homesteading girl, well a new-to-homesteading girl. She was real green when it came to things like gardens and chickens and sewing and.... And she had no clue about anything to do with goats. At all. But she wanted to learn. And she was fascinated with the thought of fresh goat milk, making her own cheese, and growing her own meat. So she did a little research and decided she would like to raise Kinder goats. Kinder goats are a cross between a pygmy buck and a nigerian doe. Perfect little goats for milk, meat, and small areas. So she went to the auction and bought her first goat. The story of that can be found here.

 And that adorable baby goat wormed his way into my heart. He's the golden boy on our little place-first one fed, first to get scratches and treats... If you want to follow the Archie saga, you can find details about his growing up by clicking on the "goats" tab on the right of the page. But now "that darn goat" as he is lovingly called, is all grown up. Or is he? I've learned that most goats grow for 3 years! So he's halfway grown up. But he has reached the size where I can no longer handle him. If he isn't willing to do something, forget it, it isn't happening- no matter how many times I shake my finger at him. He's a good 200 pounds of muscle and he knows how to use it. And when he is in rut, even the trusty cattle prod doesn't faze him. He butts it like a mortal enemy!

One of these things just doesn't belong here
 Two nights ago our sweet little doe, Ronnie, who is in the middle of a raging heat decided she would like a visit from Archie. Their pens adjoin with a gate between them so she slipped the bungee cord off the gate and invited him right on in. I'm sure they spent a passionate evening together before I discover the lovers munching on hay the next morning. Oh boy. Not only am I now faced with a possibly pregnant doe (and worse, the two doelings) but I have a burly smack-dab-in-the-middle-of-rut buck in the wrong pen. DH is out of town for the month and I am home alone. There was no way I was going in that pen by myself and nobody to call for help (that I wanted to place in harm's way.) So I did the only thing I knew to do. I sat down in the cold pouring rain and cried. I guess you can figure out how much THAT helped.

 After two days of hanging buckets of pellets and water on the fence so I wouldn't have to go inside, I got a break. Archie and company ventured into his pen and one of them had leaned against the gate-closing them all in! I quickly fed Archie from the outside and while he was busy munching away, I slipped through the girls' pen and hauled slipped the harem through the adjoining gate. Shew!! I also wired that gate shut so that couldn't happen again.

 Now, I'm faced with a situation I should have dealt with before all this happened. I have to decide what to do with a buck that I love so much but can't handle on my own. I don't have a lot of options.We aren't in "goat country" so there isn't a neighboring herd I can add him to. DH can take him back to the same auction house we got him from. Or I can keep him and spend my days worrying about his getting out again. I guess for now this story is "to be continued...."

3 comments:

  1. Wow, Archie has gotten big!
    I hate having to deal with my Nigerian Dwarf buck, and now I've got a kid Boer buck. I can't imagine how I'm going to handle him.

    Let us know how things go.

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  2. Could you butcher him or would that be too icky?

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  3. CR-I'm was hoping to get some kind of miniature buck, is yours hard to handle?

    Nancy-We plan to butcher the 2 doelings so it isn't the ickiness that is a problem. I think we've just grown too fond of him to do that. Besides I've heard that bucks old enough to experience rut have a terrible taste, like boar meat. Maybe I should research that more.

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