Tuesday, May 3, 2011

A Goat Person

I used to always wonder why people either had cows, or they had goats. I know very few people who have both. I continued to wonder that, as I contemplated buying my calf, and then followed through with the plan.

 I still wondered it as I bottle-fed my calf for 5 months.

And then I found out.

You are either a cow person, or a goat person. One will drive you bonkers, and the other you couldn't imagine living without.

Methinks I'm not a cow person. My bovine is driving me utterly crazy! The past couple of weeks have been particularly trying... Having no other cows to play with, Poppy tries to play with the goats. Heidi is usually the victim, as she's the tallest. Poppy innocently sidles up next to Heidi, and then jumps on top of her with full force. Sometimes Heidi manages to get away; sometimes not. Yesterday, I wasn't able to intervene in time and watched in what seemed like slow motion as Poppy made the jump, and Heidi crumpled under the weight. She's an older goat, and Poppy's "game" is wreaking havoc on her creaking joints. 

Another favorite "game" is to wait for Ivy to begin eating hay from the manger, and then Poppy sticks her head beneath Ivy's stomach, and flips her. Ivy is now limping from a bruised left canon bone. 

But today was the last straw. I let Chamomile and Melilot outside to play, and at first Poppy was just chasing them around. I wasn't happy with her, but I knew the kids could easily outrun her. Poppy tried a different tactic. She slowly walked up to Melilot, and then with a powerful side swipe of her head, she sent the poor kid flying five or six feet! Thankfully, Melilot was okay, just a little dazed. But I was mad. I am a true blue goat person, and no one, repeat, no one, hurts my goats!

So what should I do? I've put so much time and money into Poppy, that it doesn't seem right to sell her. Not to mention that she is has lovely conformation, and will most likely be a good grass-fed milker. But on the other hand, I don't know how much longer I, or my goats, can stand her. She's only going to get bigger (800-1000 lbs.) and I'm always going to have little baby goats, and elderly goats about the place. Is it worth it to keep her around, for the sake of her milk, but risk  her harming one of my goats? Keep her? Sell her? 

My family and I have begun praying in earnest about what to do; we'll see what comes of it...

1 comment:

Hannah said...

:( I hope everything works out. God has a plan, for sure.
Let us know what you do!