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Goats, gripes, and grasping for greatness
Goat update: kids with tags, summer camp, old goats 
28th-Jul-2016 09:20 am
Summer
This station is taking a break from garden updates for a quick update on the goats.

On Tuesday, the four kids got their CD&T and rabies shots and their ear tags. It was traumatic and dramatic as only youngsters can be. #71- Reese. #72- Tia. #73- Padrick. #74- Clancy. Hopefully I'll apply for their papers soon, too. Reese is still a monster sized boy and is my Mr. Personality for this year. Tia is finally starting to chill out, and is growing well. Padric and Clancy are loud. They've figured out that I bring the food, so while they don't really want to be my friends they are still quite interested in the buckets that I carry.

The adult goats are doing well at summer camp. I swapped out a beaten-upon Emma for no-nonsense Anna and Lerris. Anna is ten years old and Lerris is nine, and they know where it is and what it's at. Anna and Lerris are a Jessie-mafia pair who know how to bite in place of butt. And while he doesn't have horns, Lerris is the biggest goat in that group. He's bigger than Dahlia, though she's definitely meaner. I'm not concerned. Those two Jessiekids will do just fine even against the Ginger/Taffy crew. And if I sell some goats and decide to breed again this fall, Dahlia is definitely top of the list. If I still have Richie, I might put Anna in one more time, too.

I've been keeping a sharp eye on the elderly goats at home. Loki is in the best shape of the three (and he's the youngest of the old goats). He is still trotting when he wants to get somewhere in a hurry, and he is eating well. In contrast, Jessie is very arthritic and is vocalizing constantly when she pants in the heat. It's kind of a honking grunt that she used to only make while eating. The vet says that there's nothing to be done about it. She's not sick, just old and idiosyncratic.

Sancho... worries me. I didn't think to ask the vet about him, but I think the answer is the same as for Jessie: he's just getting old. He's lost a lot of muscle mass and now his ribs and his hip bones are showing. I'd hesitate to say gaunt, but the word is there in the back of my mind. He's starting to hunch up a little when he stands, and his tail is down a lot. I don't know if his feet are bothering him or if he's having tummy trouble or if he's just old. Ok, I know he's old. He's 15 now. But still, I put out hay last night for the boys so that Sancho could eat some to ease his tummy. And I'll probably shoot him up with B-12 and Nuflor this weekend just in case.

The life expectancy of a goat is between eight and twelve years. Sancho is 15 and a half. Jessie is 14. Loki is 12. (Anna and Dahlia are 10, etc. on down the lines.) So it makes sense that, while Loki looks like Sam Patch, he's still trotting while Jessie is stumping and Sancho is fading. And I have to keep reminding myself that the goats who die of "old age" live pretty well here. Jared died on 10/22/14 at 11+ years old, Cookie died on 1/12/15 at almost 8 years old, and Summer died on 3/30/15 at 13 years old. So my average is certainly respectable.


Fiona being a weirdo
Watermelon snack

Emma (before she went home early)
Watermelon snack 3
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