More trauma on the farm

Physical and emotional that is…..

So yesterday I was canning peaches that were overdue,, and I heard the dogs barking. Nothing unusual so I finished my task in 5 minutes and went out to check on the commotion. I found what I thought was a dead goat hidden in the grape vines. When I kicked the two dogs away I found our pygmy goat Fern there, breathing hard but alive and under and behind her was our baby goat PeeWee. I kicked the dogs away some more and hauled Fern and PeeWee through the nearby gate. PeeWee was just fine, acted like nothing happened just a spot of blood on one ear. Fern was breathing very hard, looked bloated, and did not want to stand. She eventually walked wobbling twice to get farther away from the dogs near the fence. I could not find any wounds on her, just a 1 cm hard knot, under her skin near her left shoulder. She was soaked with saliva though. I called the vet. I did not see a way I could take her by myself through the dogs and load her into my commuting car, and the vet could not come out until 7PM. So I watched her and investigated. I found the front gate had a hole dug under it from the outside, I presume by our digging dog Josie. The goats must have gotten out this hole into the front yard to get to the hazelnuts, blueberries and comfrey on the other side and been scared by the dogs and ran toward the other gate where I found them. Her breathing improved, but her bloating looked worse, and she still would not stand or walk. I was scared to give her any oral medications while she was breathing so fast. She cried out twice like she was in pain. As time went on her eye lids and ears looked droopy. She did nibble some grain I offered to her so I thought that was a good sign. Tom came home at 4:30 so we loaded her into the truck and brought her into the vet. He examined her and felt that she had a broken shoulder blade, a swollen knee and swollen rumen. Her lungs sounded good and he did not think she had any internal injuries. So she received banamine, activated charcoal (in case she ate something she should not have) and magnalax. She was brought back home and placed in a pen on straw. She was not interested in eating hay at that point. Overnight she seemed to do OK, she had moved in the pen, but was not active. Then Tom came home from work today and found her dead.

I feel sick about this in so many ways that I will not belabor here. She saved PeeWee’s life for which I am so thankful, but I hate that she suffered and died in the process. The two dogs involved are going to need to go to new homes without farm animals. We already graveled the gate better where the hole was dug. This is again the heart breaking side of having animals, but I am not sure how many times my heart can break anymore.

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11 Responses to More trauma on the farm

  1. Michelle says:

    Oh Donna, there is nothing I can say to make you feel better about this. What a traumatic thing for YOU, as well as the goats, to go through! Yes, they break our hearts when our beloved animals suffer or die, but life would be an empty shell without them.

  2. Kara says:

    I am at a loss for words. I just wanted to let you know I was here today and I too feel that way when something goes wrong. But then I try to think about all the days something goes right.

  3. Tammy says:

    Hi Donna,
    These things just pile up at times and it seems like we’d be better off just getting rid of all the critters. But as Kara says there are so many more beautiful days when it all goes right. I’m so sorry this happened, and I do understand your grief. We try so hard to keep them all safe, to shield them from harm. Sometimes though things just happen, no matter how hard we try to cover all the bases. Take care of yourself, and again, I’m so sorry.

  4. Donna says:

    Thanks guys, it really helps, especially coming from people who have in some way “been there, done that”. I do have thoughts of getting rid of them all, particularly if I cannot keep them safe. I think I will keep trying, two dogs and a donkey need to go, and the goat kids will be locked in a pen until that happens.

  5. Nancy K. says:

    My heart goes out to you Donna. Going through something like that is one of our worst nightmares. Bless Fern for keeping Pee Wee safe! May she be frolicking in the green pastures over the Rainbow Bridge…

  6. Tina T-P says:

    We’re so sorry to hear about your little goat – we get so worried about our neighborhood dogs sometimes – I’m glad we don’t have one. T.

  7. Donna says:

    Thanks Nancy and Tina,
    I have never experienced a dog attack before, and it’s especially horrible since it’s our dogs. Not for long though- they need new homes without sheep, goats, etc. I just wished I could have saved Fern. But I will cherish PeeWee as best I can.

  8. HisTek says:

    What a heroic goat Fern was shielding PeeWee like that! I’m so sorry that happened. It’s heartbreaking!! I really feel for you. When one of our critters dies, I try to thank God for the time and enjoyment I did have with them, but it’s hard. we had to recently have our Pyrenees put down cause he got aggressive and attacked us, and attacked and badly injured 2 of our guinea hens. We’d had him for 3 years, but he crossed the line and we couldn’t keep an aggressive dog around. unfortunately sometimes dogs just don’t work out. I’m sure you can find good homes for your dogs. Take care,

  9. Donna says:

    Thanks Jackie,
    Fern was quite a hero- I keep thinking about that-especially when I see PeeWee running around, playing. We are working on finding new homes for the two dogs. In the meantime PeeWee are her buddies are locked up in a pen and not liking it one bit.

  10. Michelle says:

    Donna, is anyone from your area coming to OFFF? I know a lady who is looking for an adult dog to keep her company and give her a little added security (alerting her to intruders). She would like an indoor/outdoor dog, so it would need to be housebroke. Would either of your dogs fit her desires?

  11. Donna says:

    I do not know of anyone going to OFFF, but can ask around. We can do Friday and Saturday, particularly if it means finding one of our dogs a good home. Our Rottweiler Queenie would fit the bill perfectly. She was an indoor/outdoor dog before we got her, now she’s outside but would prefer indoor time. She does not like the weather. She is friendly, nice and an outstanding guard dog. She’s never attacked anyone but has a nasty bark at very appropriate times. We got her after we were having crime issues here, including someone cutting our brake lines, and NO problems since. Our only issue with her is three times in about the last two years that we have had her is that when she gets really excited about something going on, she has fought with the other dogs. She does chase the cats too, but has never hurt them. She would love to be an indoor/outdoor lone dog. I will email this to you too.

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