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Monday, April 4, 2011

So Excited!!

We are getting a new goat!
She is a lovely little thing with a soft, warm, caramel buckskin color and long soft ears.

I was admiring Ages Ago Acres baby goat pictures. In fact, I've admired their herd and breeding philosophy for a while. I adore goats, but have resisted getting a milk goat, because, well, I'm far more familiar with cows and my first, and main, goat milking experience was helping a friend's auction rescue with the worst case of mastitis ever.
  Oh, it was bad. Take however bad you're thinking and triple it. Half of the poor creature's udder actually turned black and fell off. We saved hr life, and the other half of her udder and she went on to produce for my friend for several years.

  Two things stayed in my mind. One - she hated me. I can't blame her. I tied her down and gave her injections and worked her poor, painful udder while my friend held her still (no small task) and soothed her.
Two - it was all someone's fault. And some point in this poor creatures life, someone had mismanaged her so badly that her teats had "blown" - which is as unpleasant as it sounds. And then, later on, that same or a different someone had decided that milking a high-producing Sannaan was too much like work, and put her out in a field to kid and raise them unmilked. 
  Well, no newborn could nurse from those ginourmous, blown teats, so her kids starved and her udder inflamed and when finally someone noticed they dumped her at the auction.

On reflecting - the experience gave me a fear of putting a goat in the position of running into that someone. Which is silly, really. For one, if I had a milk goat, naturally I would be the someone in charge of her and I'm a pretty good someone for that position.
  But then there's the kids. The sweet little goaty kids with their tiny warm hooves and soft ears and nuzzly kisses. They'd have to be sold. Heaven forbid they get a someone.
   For nearly everything I raise, this doesn't bother me. Well, only a little, because I do the very best for them that I possibly can to be certain they have a good start and good people and then surrender to the fact that life is uncertain (though if I have a teeny inkling you may be a someone - you can go pound sand) And the fact that 95% of the males are meat normally doesn't bother me. But I'm weird about goats, what can I say?

But ... I can't afford a cow. Not to buy and not to feed. Milk is $4 a gallon (AND butter, AND cheese, AND yogurt). And all of my subconscious reluctance to not milk a goat (as I already own goats) are really silly sounding when I write them out this way. Especially since goat milk is delicious. So good. If you haven't had it - you are so missing out.
And here is this beautiful little doe that this fantastic herd is giving me (yes, giving - I nearly fainted) because she has a third teat. Not a huge one like Dryna's, just a little flaw that keeps her from being breeding quality for their herd, but gives me a lovely little family milker-to-be.

Did I mention she's beautiful? All I have to do is think of a name and go pick her up. I'm planning on this weekend at the latest.

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