Oh, dear. What did I get myself into this time??!!
The little goats are very, very proficient at escaping. First, the naughty pony let them out. I was able to herd them back in without too much trouble. That was their first day.
The second day, they escaped two times. The first time, I couldn't figure out how... then I discovered they could fit in behind their shelter... there is about 6" between the shelter and the fence. The little buggers were squeezing out there. So, I quickly piled a bunch of branches in there, thinking that would stop 'em.
Nope! They got out again. So, the next time I found an old pallet and shoved that in the gap. That stopped them!
Then, the next day, they pushed their door back open... I kind of have it blocked off, so they could run in their little play area. I guess they think their play area isn't good enough, so they just pushed the block open and ran willy-nilly around the field, bleating and kicking up their heels.
Two days later...
Ok, I think I have those babies licked now! It's been two whole days since they have escaped. Yay! They are becoming friendlier and friendlier. I make everyone who comes over visit the goats. Doesn't matter if they WANT to see the goats... it's kind of a rite of visiting the farm;-)
The girls, Lily and Star are by far the friendlest. They learned very quickly that I often have a bit of grain with me, and they come running when they see me. Trouble is getting there, too. I am slowly beginning to pet them when they are eating out of my hand, so they get used to touch. Larry is STILL the only one who hasn't eaten out of my hand.
Two days even later....
Had a GREAT goat day today! They haven't escaped in quite a while, and even Larry has eaten out of my hand today. I couldn't get down to flyball practice today due to a road closure, so I decided it was time to start leash training the goats.
I put a leash on both Lily and Star, and got a little dish of grain, and led them out and into the yard. The boys just followed leashless. As soon as they were out, I just dropped the leashes and let them go to it. They were so happy! They ate lots of grass, and a few leaves and brambles. I only kept them out for about 20 minutes, but I was very surprised at how much they could chow down during that time! I thought it would take me a while to get them back in, but all I had to do was grab the dish of grain and call 'Here, little goats', and they just followed me back into their house. I gave them a grain treat, so they would enjoy coming back in. It honestly took me less than a minute to get them back inside. Whoohoo!
They are so funny... they are being good and quiet out in their pen, and the second they see me anywhere in the yard, they start bleating and calling out. We are starving! Pay attention to us! I am actually starting to enjoy the little guys. I know I have a big learning curve ahead of me, but I think it's mostly going to be a fun learning curve!
Winter farming in a nutshell
2 weeks ago