Blind Bob, Naked Shortcake, Wild Hens and the Eternal Goat Question

So Old Bob is nearly blind.  We heard a bash in the barn a couple of weeks ago and saw Bob squaring off against two of my new pack goats.  It was at that time we noticed Bob’s right eye was opaque and a little swollen.  They have since been separated, but this last week shared a fenceline.  And yesterday we noticed his left eye is the same, and he is having a very hard time seeing.  I am treating him with antibiotics in case it is an intraocular eye infection like Oogie.  But I think most likely he bashed the younger, larger, horned pack goats through the fence.  Bob is old and should not be behaving like this.  He was one of my first lambs that I kept and needs to act his age.  I hope he gets better.

Then there’s Shorty.  She is a very friendly (and hard to photograph) younger goat that is now naked.  She was shedding her cashmere winter coat and had just a few lice but rubbed off both of her sides.  She is acting fine, her best friend is fine, and it doesn’t have the characteristics of mites.  So I treated her lice and she and Peewee are sharing a pen until she grows her hair back.  It is still way to cold for her to be outside naked.  There’s snow forecast here for tomorrow.

The hens are going crazy.  They are laying about 2 dozen eggs per day, and they are not letting us have them without a fight.  Today one of them pecked my head when I was peeking into another nest box, and one in a hay feeder jumped up and attacked me with her claws.  This one was in another feeder when I accidentally threw hay on top of her.  She just stayed put but her egg producing parts are hanging out in a precarious manner.  So I nicely took the hay off her and reposition her only to get pecked again.

The eternal goat question is, of course, why do we have goats?  We ask ourselves this question frequently when they cause all kind of trouble on the farm, unlike the other critters that cohabitate with us here.  This time they managed to rub and push little holes into one of the welded wire fences and sneak through.  Now, mind you, the grass was shorter in the field they are escaping into than the one they were leaving, but that did not stop them from twice sneaking through.  So Tom and Thomas had to stop what they were planning on doing today to mend the fence.  And Tom and I got to chase the goats back into the correct field twice.  So, why do we have goats anyway?

OK, here are some reasons why:

I just have to remind myself why every once in a while and realize that I am incredibly blessed to have goats.

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10 Responses to Blind Bob, Naked Shortcake, Wild Hens and the Eternal Goat Question

  1. Chai Chai says:

    That’s why I have goats too!

  2. Karen Anne says:

    Where I live there is vet who specializes in eye diseases. Maybe there is one near you. Having eye stuff going on myself, I have come to appreciate how much med help can do.

    • Thanks Karen Anne. Since I have had a lot of experience here with eye problems I thought I would try this first and if there’s no improvement call our vet. He’s pretty good with eye problems.

  3. Teresa says:

    I have asked myself that goat question many times. I tend to come up with the same reasons as you! They are so much fun!

  4. Jackie Craw says:

    Goats are a lot of trouble but are very endearing. My husband not only asks why we have goats, but also why we have llamas, sheep, chickens, guineas, pigeons, cats, a rabbit, a rat, and hermit crabs. the only animal he doesn’t ask why we have are the 3 dogs. But he does enjoy the precious pet moments the kids and i make a point of showing him doesn’t ask why for a while.

  5. I’m in total agreement with you about how “precocious” goats can act! Especially everytime one ends up somewhere they’re not supposed to be, like the feedroom or the wrong pasture, etc. Or when they square off for headbutting fun through the expensive fencing, necessitating time consuming and more expensive repairs. Oh well, we’ve got 11 beautiful little Angora and cashgora goatie kids flying around the place, which kind of makes it worthwhile. As you so eloquently demonstrated in your posting. Also, we had a doe with what my DW considered bulging eyes. She was concerned about it, researched it, and had the vet take a look on his farm call. He said not to be worried, no problem. We share your anxiety about the bugs on the goats. We discovered, much to our chagrin, when we sheared earlier this spring, that we had a couple with lice. The vet took some sample bugs and indicated that our of about 30 or so had, I believe, goat-sucking lice. Yuck. We gave them their first dose of ivermectin and will re-dose them soon. Plus, we have a couple that will require a bath and we have to treat the kids too. No fun for them for sure. Take care out there. We try and check back in on your blog a few times a week.

    • Goats tend to do the opposite of what you want, except when there’s food involved. So exasperating sometimes and too smart for their own good other times. But lovable. Bob’s eyes are looking a little better, but I am not sure he can see better. Shorty is slowly growing her hair back in. Thanks for checking back in.

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