SolitudeFarmatBunnyFeathers

First, let's review the pros of goat ownership.
(IF you just want the comedy portion of this Skip right to the cons)


1. Milk goats are easy to keep if your fence is in good condition and you have enough green stuff to keep them busy. Goats milk has less allergens than cows milk. And if you own the goat, you know what it is eating, No wheat in feed = Gluten Free milk.

2. Meat goats have nice lean meat.


3. Fiber goats, produce wool called mohair. It's finer and softer than sheep wool and the wigs of the founding fathers were made from mohair and it's still used today for quality doll hair that has the look and feel of human hair. 

4. Baby goats called kids are soo cute!


5. Goats make an excellent pasture rotation with cows or horses because goats are browsers, meaning they prefer weeds over grass. Parasites that infect cattle and horses go through the goats digestive system without affecting the goat and goat parasites are harmless to cattle and horses. So a pasture divided into 4 sections with horses or cattle in one section eating all the grass and picking up all the goat parasites. Ideally the adjacent section is the goats. They eat all the weeds and pick up the parasites left by the horses or cattle. The animals move around the sections leaving two sections empty of animals. The latest emptied section, ideally, should be planted with a grass of cover crop appropriate for the season. Autumn Clovers and Fescues. Mid Spring, Bermuda. Available from Outside Pride, Crab Grass is the most efficient grass in summer months. As other grasses go dormant, Fescue, and Bermuda can't take the heat, Crab Grass is still green as springtime. With little or no water.
Depending how much pasture area you have, and how many animals you have will determine the time frame for moving.  Ideally your movement rate will be around 30 days per section.. This allows the maximum amount of time for the section the cattle or horses are moving into, to have been fallow long enough to allow any parasites a minimum of 30 days to hatch and finding no host, die. It also allows the pasture to recover. Additional benefits is confining animals to 1/4 of the area available forces them to eat all the forage available in that section, optimizing the space. Herbivores evolved to be in constant motion. Nibble here take a few steps, grab a bite or two, move on. In a forest or open plain or the desert, this is the best way to avoid predators and eat at the same time. But in a confined pasture setting, they are always milling around. Clumps of grass grow knee high next to grass eaten down to the root.
If the only thing green are those clumps of grass, they will get eaten quicker, and you know it is time to move everybody around

6. Even mutt goats are great weed eaters. 5 goats can clear 100 X 100 foot area down to the dirt in 3 weeks. They eat poison oak and sumac down to the roots and they are capable of eating kudzu until it just gives up. Honey suckle is eaten roots and all. Cedar trees will be eaten right down to a pointy stump. (That might go into con category too) Pine trees will be stripped of the bark and the tree dies. A few other types of trees that goats love so much they will kill them eating the bark.

In the con column, one story should be enough to convince you, you don't need goats as pets.
Baby goats only take 16 weeks until they can breed. So baby goats are only babies for 4 months. If you're in it for meat then this is a pro. If you're in it for cuteness, very limited. 


When baby goats are cute they stick their head through the fence, because no matter how much land you have, there is always something more interesting on the other side. Then babies grow up and suddenly one day the horns go through, but won't come BACK. This totally flummoxes a goat... "this worked yesterday..." So they stand there and scream until someone goes and gets them unstuck. Most goats "GET IT" pretty quick and one over night ordeal stuck in the fence keeps them afraid of doing it again. Some actually figure out how to get the horns back out without help. Others have horns that grow wide and will not go through the fence after a certain point.
So here is
The Case Against Pet Goats
Wild blackberries are almost ripe.
My mini goats have found a spot the rain has washed out a ditch under the fence. They just sail right through it at full speed. One idiot has not been paying attention to how the little bitty ones are doing it. So she sticks her head through and can't figure out how to get her horns back through . So she stands there screaming like a woman being murdered.  Every day for 5 days, 2 to 3 times a day. Go get her unstuck.  YaAYaaaaaaaaaYaaaaaAAA. 9am. Go get her unstuck.  2pm get her unstuck. 5pm decided. Enough. I got her unstuck with plan to fix the situation.  Armed with bucket handle and bungee cord. I got her unstuck but instead of letting her go, I held on. She might weigh 60 pounds. I'm pretty determined at times.  After she dragged me down the hill 15 feet with me hanging on to a front leg, more of a cursing tumble really. I got hold of a back leg and she dragged me back up the hill 10 feet. 30 degree incline.  Briars, weeds. Flint rocks. I ended up on my back with the goat on her back on top of me. Well after all that crap she ain't Goin nowhere. So I've got my right arm wrapped around her chest. She really sounds like murder victim now. Except she's on top of me smacking me in the shoulder with her horns. I'm Screaming SHUT UP! with no effect. I realize my equipment is out of reach. So I do an upside down crab maneuver in shorts and a sports bra over all the rocks and thorny weeds with one hand and my feet. Cause I am not letting go - period.  I get within reach of my stuff.  Now I need both hands. So I wrapped my legs around her. I do a roll over sort of where I am sitting on her. The screams were deafening.  A horror movie could use those screams. Because by now she's hoarse and losing her voice and she's kind of got a gurgle going between screams. I tied that bucket handle to her horns and gave it a good tug to make sure it was going to stay and let her go. STILL screaming, she ran down the hill and found the others who, all 10 were crammed into the 8x8 shed all together. Heads were poking out the door watching. But nobody was coming out. She literally leaped into the door and she was STILL screaming.  I'm laying there looking up at blue sky. A crack of thunder scared the crap out of me and it started pouring down rain in the total sunshine.  Really Bright Sunshine.  The rain was all sparkly. It was like a million tiny rainbow colored drops. And at that moment I'm laying flat on my back covered in dirt and grime and thorns sticking in me. And all I could do was look at a perfectly blue sky and all the glittering rain and think... God is laughing his ass off at me. He really must watch over me just for amusement sake. Otherwise there is no way I could survive some of the things I do. I made God laugh so hard he cried rainbows. 

So if you are still wanting goats - I have several including The Screamer, I'll make you a really good deal on. But you have to catch them.