Posts Tagged "2008 Kids"

Christmas Kids

Posted by on Dec 16, 2008 in Dairy Goat, Goat Kid, Visions of Sugarplums, Winter | 4 comments

My goodness! We had a bit of a surprise this morning… Well, TWO surprises, actually. The cold front that blew in yesterday brought us some harsh wind and sub-freezing temperatures last night. When we turned in, the temperature was 29 degrees, with a wind chill in the low twenties. Yikes! Not exactly what are used to in our neck of the woods. Would you believe it was 80 a couple of days ago? I had shorts on; washing the dogs on Sunday afternoon! Winter is the season for livestock to be born, and a strong front will often trigger labor and birth. As I write this, I realize that I am very much amiss in not having introduced beautiful Leah to you before now! In October, we had an opportunity to purchase a lovely Nubian dairy goat with excellent bloodlines. She has quite a personality, is a bit on the wild side when compared to the spoiled girls already here, and has a voice that carries over an impressive distance. She is affectionately known as the Blue Goose, as well as Babe the Big Blue Ox. The latter, in regard to her great size of about 150 pounds. Leah came to us with the hope that she was already bred, but we did not know what to expect for a due date. So, she became a part of our Sugarplum herd, and we looked forward hopefully to youngsters in January or February. Now, the tricky thing about some goats is that you can’t always tell when they are pregnant, and you sometimes don’t know until the last day or so when they are ready for labor. So, without a whole lot of warning, I went out to feed this morning and was pretty shocked to see that Leah’s udder was QUITE FULL. (I should mention here that “quite full” in this case is pretty impressive, since those bloodlines I mentioned had Leah’s mother producing a gallon of milk a day.) Oh my gosh! Run and grab fresh hay and fill the shed! Oh my gosh again! She’s in labor RIGHT now! Run and grab some towels! Where the heck is the camera? Why does it have to be so stinking cold today? Oh my gosh! Is that a foot? She did a marvelous job, talking to me as she circled and pushed. And before I knew it, there was a brand new delivery of mostly legs and ears. Leah set to work cleaning and talking, and talking and cleaning. Just about the time she had Package Number One well on her way to being dry, more circling and talking brought Package Number Two, a tiny twin boy. As beautifully as Leah does in talking and cleaning and humming and nuzzling, she will need a bit of encouragement in the department of feeding. At the moment, she is not so very inclined to stand still while the little ones eat. So, she needs to be held and convinced that it really is a good thing. I’m sure she will catch on, and I will certainly do my best in this regard as I am eagerly awaiting MY share of that goodness in a couple of weeks or...

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The Good Shepherd

Posted by on Apr 13, 2008 in Goat Kid, Goatherd | Milkmaid, Spanish Goat, Spring | Comments Off on The Good Shepherd

Sunday morning started out well enough, with sunshine, blue skies, and a nice Spring breeze. As we were working in the yard, I noticed that one of the goats was off by herself. Pinta certainly looked as though she was going into labor as she paced back and forth under the mesquite tree in the middle of the field. Not wanting to disturb her, I walked out to the pasture and kept a distance while I watched through binoculars. I am sure that anybody who saw me sitting out there wondered, “What is that crazy woman doing?” Not that it makes any difference to me! Pinta finally laid down on the ground and delivered the first kid. So tiny!!! When she began to clean it, I was amazed to see her roll it around in the dirt as well as licking it to dry it off. The tiny little fellow stood quickly to have it’s first milk. Then I got another surprise as Pinta laid back down and delivered an identical twin – both pure white! Once this second kid was on it’s feet and nursing I went back to the house to leave her in peace. She stayed under the tree for the remainder of the afternoon, watching and waiting for the herd to move back to the shed for the night. As the sun began to go down, I headed to the goat pen to bring the girls in. They came running, as they usually do for a feed bucket, and Pinta started out with her babies. She was about 30 yards out, when she turned and realized that one little one had not followed her. She called and called, but had no answer. Panic set in as she saw the other goats leave and she ran up the alley with just one baby. I was a fair distance still from the tree when I saw this unfold – asheaded toward the tree to retrieve the wayward youngster I saw a Mexican eagle land on the ground just inside the shade of the branches. I called out to JW at the front of the house and broke into a run. He had seen the eagle as well and was running across the yard. From the corner of my vision, I watched my husband LEAP OVER THE FENCE and run out into the field. Mind you, all of our fence is five feet high in net wire with barbed wire on top and bottom! As he reached it, he had placed one foot in a strand of the net, one hand on the top wire and vaulted over. As he ran into the field, the eagle took off. I’m sure he must have been disappointed, as there is no doubt in my mind that bird had been watching and waiting all afternoon from the large oak tree at the end of the field. I reached the tree – out of breath – and fell to my knees. There, snuggled against the trunk was the tiniest little treasure. Her little hooves are only the size of my thumb! I happened to have the camera in my pocket, as I had planned to take pictures when Pinta brought them in. I quickly took a photo of the little girl, still fast asleep, with an innocent smile on her tiny face. She never even knew that there had been any danger. I scooped her up and headed up to the night pen. As I neared the goats, I stooped to return the baby to her mother. As I placed her on...

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Sugarplum Dairies

Posted by on Apr 9, 2008 in Dairy Goat, Goat Kid, Spring, Visions of Sugarplums | Comments Off on Sugarplum Dairies

It was only about ten days after getting the two new girls settled in that Annie’s belly and udder had grown to enormous proportions and it was evident that she would soon be giving birth. I had a hunch on the morning that I helped JW load the two steers to take them to the auction barn, and fretted about it the whole way there and back. Naturally, it had turned chilly that morning, and the skies were drizzling off and on. Sure enough, when we pulled into the driveway, Annie did not poke her head around the corner of her shed to greet us. I jumped out of the truck and ran to see a big beautiful baby girl standing to have her first milk. At only four hours old, she was already making attempts to jump and buck, and showed no fear as she marched right up to me. So, needless to say, she is growing with leaps and bounds! Her best friend is Dot, and they chase each other around in the yard. She also finds great fun in chasing the other dogs, the cats, and even the chickens. Heidi gets faster and more sure-footed each day and I’m sure will surprise Dot when she really gets growing. Typically, a female goat of this breeding can top out at 130 pounds! But, for now she is as small and as sweet as could be imagined. I have discovered that if I sit on the ground, she will come running over and typically ends up crawling into my lap for a nap. Irresistible. I told JW that Heidi is just too sweet to really be a goat. Surely, she must be a Sugarplum Fairy! So, with a literary twinkle in my eye, I have taken to calling these girls my Sugarplum...

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