I looked out the window this morning to see all the goats staring forlornly into their shed. The weather has not been ridiculously cold, so I let the chickens out of the hoophouse. Naturally having anywhere to go, they decided to go under the goat gate. And naturally, being able to choose anywhere in the goat pen to go, they started scratching in the shed. And naturally, being the terrified, brainless birds that they are, they wouldn’t come out because Tommie was staring at them. It was a standoff until I called off the goats.
Tommie, by the way, is doing quite well after his surgery. We stuffed him into a borrowed dog carrier for the one hour ride to Richfield. It was as loud as predicted. The vet sedated him before we even took the carrier out of the car. Why bring that racket inside when you don’t have to? While Tommie got fixed, R and I raced around Richfield doing errands since we don’t make the big drive to the city more than every couple of months. R even found Boggs in his size at the feed store; how our desires have been reduced to neoprene footwear and an ash bucket is another day’s post.
But there we were at the vet’s counter, ready to collect our unhappy beast. It was a good thing in the end that we did not try to do this on our own. The initial burdizzo clamping had left some scar tissue that had to be excised-turns out he was fully intact and we would have likely bungled the job a second time. As I paid the $75 bargain, I said how I was looking forward to a quieter ride home, at least one where we could converse below a shout. The tech said, “Oh, he’s been making a lot of noise back there.” Even with a shot of no-hurt, he squalled the entire way back, worse than the cats, worse than the toddler not getting a pack of Lifesavers at the grocery.
An hour later, he was still letting us know how unhappy he was. In retrospect, the poor guy was probably hungry, but he needed to wait until he was a little more alert to eat anyway. Car-sick, woozy goat, no thanks. It was long past sunset when we got home. In the dark it was easier to carry the dog crate to the pen than to try to leash him up. He was waking up, the hollering non-stop. He didn’t shut up until he heard the does calling back. The sound of his herd calmed him down right away. A stunned moment of blessed silence. Out of the box, a few mouthfuls of hay, a drink of water and he was off with the girls for the night. The next morning, he wasn’t running so fast. Two days later, it was like nothing had happened. Except the buck stink is gone, he’s not mounting anyone, and he’s stopped trying to butt me whenever I go into the pen. The girls have waggled their tails at him a couple times. He doesn’t seem to care if there is hay in the feeder. Now that sex is mostly forgotten they are a happy herd, chasing each other in circles, playing goat-of-the-mountain on their stumps and looking for grain and things I don’t want them to do, not necessarily in that order.
We still don’t know if Tommie actually got the job done for either of the does. At some point I guess I could Google the signs of goat pregnancy. Since I can’t do anything about it now, I am pretending it didn’t happen, like parents who suspect their teenager is more active than they’d like. The girls will let us know if they need anything. They are pretty loud and obnoxious when they don’t get their every whim. After all, they are still teenagers too…we could be in for trouble.