Lizzy was an escape artist extraordinaire. And while even when she escaped out her pen, she was contained safely to the fenced in sideyard, perfectly safe to nibble on well, everything, and play...this led to a different, far worse problem...
Darcy was a crybaby.
Every time Lizzy would escape, he would cry for her. Not a cute little baby goat cry,oh no... it was an "I'm so desperate for you I am going to die if we aren't together immediately sounding like a stuck walrus cry".
So we redid their pen so she couldn't escape anymore.
And she immediately did.
So we redid the pen again. Stronger, higher, taller, no way she can get out. NO. WAY.
But she did.
and the stuck walrus cries continued...daily. (Darcy was nothing if not romantic and insistent in his longing for her).
Lizzy as a baby; apparently a face that Darcy could not go even
5 minutes without being near...
We live on a gorgeous one acre homestead amidst other horse properties and animal lovers and no one near our vicinity ever complained about the bleating cries of Darcy that some mornings started before 5am. But we wanted to be good neighbors so the lovely lady we got them from took them back and re-homed them... and in our defense, the lady who sold them to us, told us she had never in her life heard a goat WAIL like Darcy did! But, this story has a happy ending...I am told a lovely woman and her husband who had 7 acres took them and since she has no other homes within a mile of her, she doesn't mind the escaping and the crying and the goats are happy and Voila! happy ending...for them.
Except... we miss having goats. and the really funny part? About 2 months after we rehomed them, when we went delivering homemade Christmas goodies that year to the neighbors, our closest neighbor lamented that she missed hearing the goats! Really missed them. Where were they? Could we get some more?
Well...Didn't see that coming. LOL.
My eldest daughter and I, the day we picked out Darcy and Lizzy...
Darcy...seriously, the cutest, if not the loudest ever, little goat...
I love making soap and really wanted to have goats milk for my hobby. And Mr. Darcy wants to make cheese, and the kids just L-O-V-E-D giving the little devils their treats each day and helping with their care. (Although even my daughter who was 6 at the time said she did not miss the 5am stuck walrus sounding crying...).
Well, my husband came home this week to report... One of his clients needs to rehome two of her goats. Different breed. More docile. Quiet, (she says). Do we want them? We know this time around we would have to be race-ready with a better, higher, stronger, structure at the get go (the old adage is, if it won't hold water, it won't hold a goat). She thinks our homestead would be "just perfect" for them. Mr. Darcy thinks we should give them another go...
Here are the lessons we learned our first time around:
1. Goats require a pen that is bigger, stronger, taller, better than the pen you are thinking of in your mind. For our next foray into goat-keeping, we need to be prepared with stronger, taller, fencing.
2.Goats CAN be noisy. Keep this in mind if you have neighbors.
3. Goats kept for milk need milked daily. If you travel alot or have a busy lifestyle outside of homesteading, milk goats may not be for you. Or... you need reliable animal care that can perform what they need when you are away (we are lucky to have a wonderful animal loving friend who takes care of our animals when travels take us away from our homestead).
4. Goats are a great homesteading activity for kids to help with.
5. We have missed having them on our homestead, even if we haven't missed the crying.
Have you ever kept goats? What was your experience?
One last thing, I am a new contributing blogger for a great community blog of farm gals...Farm Chick Chit Chat. Please follow me over there by clicking HERE and check out the posts from the other great contributors! All kinds of awesome homesteading/farm related posts all in one place. You are going to love it!