I’ve already made it pretty clear that I don’t know what I’m doing when it comes to animals (or much else, for that matter). If you missed Welcome to your new home, little goats, you may want to read it before reading this. It explains a lot.
Ronnie and his dad (thanks, Papa Sherm!) built the fence for the goats on Saturday. Up until that point, they were in a dog kennel – a less than ideal situation, to say the least. I never realized how baby goats cry. It’s loud.
Anyway, we worked all day getting their new pen ready. As we were finishing up, my parents stopped by. Add my sister who lives next door and my two kids, and we had enough characters to produce a true comedy. Of course, that’s not we had planned. It was strictly business – moving the goats from point A (the dog kennel in the back yard) to point B (the new pen in the woods) while avoiding the obstacles named Roxy and Zeke (obviously, the dogs). Kind of like a covert operation…or an episode of American Gladiators.
Of course, this was complicated by the facts that the goats were wearing collars entirely too big for their necks and that they go crazy if separated from each other. I hooked them both to leashes and had Max entice them forward with a bucket of food. It kind of worked. A little.
Then, my dad’s mind flashed to the nativity my mom displays every Christmas and what were those Biblical shepherds holding? A broom! Well, not really, but that’s what he used to scoot them along. So, we had Max and my mom shaking goat food in a bucket calling them, me trying my best to pull them while not allowing the collars to slip over their heads, and my dad (still in his arm sling from recent shoulder surgery) bumping their butts with a broom and sounding very shepherd-ish.
We made it! We put the goats in the pen and closed the gate, and that’s when the dogs went ballistic, barking and lunging at the fence. Whose idea was it to put the dogs in there to “get it over with”? I’m not sure in all of the confusion that was going on. But, that’s what I did. I put Zeke on a leash first (I thought his natural instincts would take over since he’s an Australian Shepherd mix) and brought him in.
He walked over to the goats and tried to nip at one. That baby goat put his head down and deflected the dog with a swift upward motion that introduced Zeke to what those cute little horns are for. Zeke quickly got the idea. He walked over to the feed bucket and ate some goat food. Weird dog.
Next was Roxy’s turn. What. A. Disaster. She immediately lunged at a goat in attack mode (of course, now I realize what a stupid idea this was. I never would even consider putting Sparkles the cat in the chicken yard. I amaze myself sometimes with my stupid ideas). The goats fought back. I tried to pull Roxy off but she was so strong the cable I was restraining her with slid and blistered my fingers. I think I almost lost my pinky. It was bad.
And then it turned worse. She slipped right out of her collar.
I screamed for Ronnie, who happened to be about two hundred feet away. I don’t know why it didn’t occur to me that both my dad and my dad-in-law were right on the other side of the fence. They both barreled into the goat lot to help. Papa Sherm blocked the goats and my dad picked Roxy up (remember, he only has use of one arm) by the nape of her neck and threw her out of the gate.
I won’t go into all of the polite conversation between my husband and me that happened at this point. I was a little worked up. And he was slightly perturbed with me. Slightly.
Well, the goats are in their lot. The dogs can not get in the lot. Ronnie and I are still married. My family thinks I’m a fool.
I’d say it was a successful day.
- Welcome to your new home, little goats. (mandyholbert.com)