However ... while we wait for the pregnant does to decide to deliver kids .... I wanted to tell you about how Angel came to live at the farm.
The first thing that you'll notice about Angel is that she's a Boer or Boer cross goat ... not a dairy goat. The next things you'll probably notice is that she has horns and how extremely skinny she is.
Angel says - Hi
These photos were taken last Friday when she had been at the farm for 3 weeks already. You can see from this photo how narrow she is. When she arrived 4 weeks ago on December 10th ... she was simply a walking/limping skeleton covered by skin and a rough coat. She has put on a lot of weight in the time she's been here.
She won't put weight on her right front foot. I think the break is in the foot area. I have been able to rub the rest of her shoulder and leg. But, she still won't let me touch her foot.
Here's the story of how Angel arrived here on December 10, 2010.......
It was after dark and I was out in the barn doing the evening feeding chores. Even though I'm not milking at this time, I bring each group of does into the milk parlor for their evening grain. This insures that each of them gets their fair share and keeps them into the habit of coming into the milking parlor each day. While they're out of their pens eating their grain, I take the opportunity to put out fresh hay for them. This task is much easier with them out of the pens/yards. They give me a lot of help when I feed hay with them in the pen/yards!
I had the first group of does fed and back into their large pen. I had just taken the second group of does down the hall to the milk parlor for their dinner and was putting hay into their feeders. I heard the door open between the processing room and the milk parlor and then Mom calling for me. I answered her and she came on into the barn to find me. She asked me if I had a goat out. I told her that I didn't think so, but went to check on the group that had just came back from the milk parlor and on the last group that hadn't been fed yet.
There wasn't any gates open on the back sides of their yards, but I did see a goat out behind one of the yards. I told Mom that there was a Boer goat out there and it looked like a young one!
I went out around the barn to see if I could catch her. She was WILD and would not be caught. I had a bucket with a little grain in it so I shook it to get her attention. She came to the grain when I set the bucket down, but wouldn't let me get close enough to grab her by the horn.
I finally got her cornered between two of the outside goat yards. I had Mom go around the other side of the barn so she wouldn't run back out to the highway. Since I couldn't catch her, I had to think of another way to rescue this young goat.
One of the goat yards we had her cornered between belonged to the group of goats that were in the milk parlor eating their grain. So .... I had Mom open the big gate to that yard and I pushed her through the gate. Mom closed the gate while I ran inside to close the gate inside the barn to that pen.
I opened one of the kidding pens just around from the big goat pen. I guided her into the kidding pen and closed the gate! Whew! She was safely inside. She was scared, but at least she was safe.
I asked Mom how she had seen this goat out there in the dark. She told me that she had been outside with my little house dog while he relieved himself. She saw this goat loping down the driveway from the highway toward the barn and came to tell me. I'm glad she was out there and my little dog barked at the goat running by to let her know it was there.
I put water, feed, and hay in the pen for her and let her settle down. The next morning I gave her some wormer, a BoSe shot, a copper bolus, and some B-Complex. And, then just let her rest and enjoy fresh food and water for a couple of days. I posted a "Found Goat" sign at the local store and spread the word that a goat had showed up at my farm, but got no response from anyone about losing a goat.
It took a few days of gentle care and offering her food from my hand for her to warm up to me. She now loves to be scratched and loves to snuggle.
Loving the attention
In the photo above you can see a knot on her right shoulder. It feels like her shoulder was broken too since it has this knot and just doesn't feel like the other one. She's not tender in that area though.
I think she was on her own for quite a while. Early last fall a neighbor who has a large cow dairy a few miles down the road came by asking me if I had lost a goat. I checked to be sure they were all here. And, told him that I wasn't missing any. He said there was a single goat grazing out in his hay fields. He asked if I'd take the goat if he could catch it. I told him to bring it on over and I'd take care of it until we could find where it belonged. He never came back with it so I assumed that it had either gone back home or he couldn't catch it.
It bothered me that there was a lone goat out there by itself. We have a big coyote problem around here ... I hear them yipping almost every night. I was really concerned that the goat wouldn't last long out there by itself. Every time I'd think about it, I'd wonder if it was okay and say a prayer for that goat all alone out there.
Since there hasn't been any response to my inquires about anyone losing a goat and how extremely skinny she was when she arrived ... I think she is the goat my neighbor down the road had seen out in the hay fields several months ago. I think the angels protected her and guided her here where she'd be safe and have a new family.
I'll have to take her horns off and let her foot finish healing before putting her out with one of the goat groups, but she has a home here now. She is a very sweet girl and I love her lots!
Angel - My new snuggle bug