Here, you fill find our ten greatest insights about raising goats, every bit of wisdom tinged with our own special blend of Wynott sarcasm. 🙂
- Goats like to eat a variety of things. Grass, bark, oats, grain, poison ivy, kudzu, occasional bits of paper, their own milk, the dogs’ food, and hay. With all of this variety, the hay must be the most expensive and of the best quality, but whatever you do, do not let the hay touch the ground, or it becomes tasteless and bitter, almost worse than life itself.
- Male goats will go to great efforts to attract and woo their “women.” This includes blubbering, spitting, moaning, and screaming. The most important thing for them, however, is to pee everywhere: on other males, on the aforementioned hay (which then becomes inedible), their own legs, and most importantly their own faces.
- Milking goats can be lots of fun. This is especially true of first fresheners (goats being milked for the first time) and slightly wild goats because they can kick and jump and twist like flamenco dancers while keeping their heads still solidly in the grain bucket.
- Female goats will choose the most inopportune time to have their kids. They will choose a rainstorm, a snow storm, the middle of the night, or the very time that your dinner party starts.
- Goats love to climb. They will choose any and everything provided (or not) to climb on. They will climb on low branches, tires buried on end in the ground, large wooden electric spools, picnic tables, and your newest car, given the opportunity.
- Goats are very affectionate. They love attention if they are raised with it and will show their attachment in a variety of ways. They will rub against you after enjoying a meal of poison ivy; they will nibble at your hands at the same time as they chew a mouthful of lovely cud; and they will jump up to greet you after walking through the mud in the yard.
- Goats hate to get wet. They will avoid the rain and snow with great effort, even if it means staying in the barn for days at a time.
- They love a routine and prefer the status quo. It may take you weeks to entice them to a new area of pasture, and setting up a new and cleaner milking area might cause slight panic in their goaty brains.
- Most herds have a very distinct herd hierarchy. A herd queen controls most herd activity. New goats might get chased out of the barn with the energy of a Tasmanian devil and the vehemence of a Roman soldier.
- Goats love and need clean water at all times. They will, however, do everything they possibly can to make this impossible. They drop hay in the water, they drool in the water, they step in the water, and best of all, if they can accomplish it, they will poop in the water.
Although all of these things are true about raising goats, and yet, goats are also the best, most fun, and most amusing farm animals that I can ever imagine, and we can not imagine life without them!!!