Tag Archives: kids

The Show Must Go On

Joel and Nina in the backyard where they aren’t supposed to be. They crawl through the chicken passage.

Last night, at around 3 am, I was awakened by a huge clatter, bang, and barking Terry. I stumbled from my bed, grabbed the light, and went to the front porch that overlooks the animal area to check out what all the commotion was about. 

I found a distraught Terry and every container in the compound knocked over. The food barrel, the goat’s water bucket, Terry’s water bucket, the chicken’s food dish, and a few cans. The spotlight must have been the signal for Jolina’s kids to run through their circus performance again.

Nina and Joel tap-danced on the barrel and rolled it across the patio. They leaped over water and food dishes. They jumped up on the bricks that are there waiting for the next quarantine project and then jumped down again. They kicked a few cans. Then they did it all again. 

Terry started barking, which brought out the mama instinct in Jolina. She charged Terry, more to set her collar a-jingling I think rather than to actually headbutt him. 

Lady had to get in on the action. She started biting the corral bar, lifting it up enough to crash back down and make some noise. I guess she was providing the musical accompaniment. 

This went on for about 15 minutes, even after I removed the spotlight. Finally, the show must have been over and things got quiet again thank goodness. I hope there isn’t a repeat performance tonight.



1 Comment

Filed under Animal Husbandry

Some of the Kids have Arrived

This year has been pretty bleak in the goat department with only one baby being born. Now that we’ve reached December and most of the herd is pregnant with Elvis’s love children, well, it’s time to rearrange living quarters to accommodate the newbies and their overprotective mamas.

The first set out of the gate were these two, a boy and a girl.  One of the triplets, Jolina, the tailless, moseyed on over to investigate and got trapped in the barrica (barrel) for a few hours when mama goat wouldn’t let her close to her new babies. If you remember, Jolina lost her tail when she got overly curious about Red right after he was born. Cookie just bit it off. Apparently, Jolina hasn’t learned her lesson. Oh Jolina! When will you learn?

Mama goat’s young daughter also gave birth just minutes after. She only had one girl and my husband, Papa Chivo, was disappointed. But seeing how this is her first birth, a healthy and happy girl kid is ok in my book.

Like three peas in a pod!

Because overcrowding is an issue, even before Terry came to live with us, the stalls had to be repurposed to lodge the new little ones. So right now, all mamas and babies are in Lady’s stall and Lady is housed in the patio with Fred and George Puppers. Since Terry and George still haven’t made peace, Terry is in the backyard. 

But what about Buster Rabbit? Unfortunately, a few days before Terry came to us, someone left the ajibe door open and Buster Rabbit fell in the well. Isn’t there a fable about a rabbit and a well? Sadly, there was no happy ending for Buster in this case. So Terry took over the backyard.

Several of the other goats are so heavily laden with progeny they can hardly walk. My husband is predicting triplets, but I say just twins will be quite enough.

Leave a comment

Filed under Animal Husbandry

Winter Babies

It has been COLD these last few months.  Not just the normal chilly weather we come to expect in December and January, but freezing!  

With temperatures so low, I tend to fret about the new babies, although with fur and feathers, they are much warmer than I am.


First, our gringa (naked neck) chicken hatched a brood of 4.  


Then Caramela the Sheep had a little lamb we named Christmas.  We think she was a little early because of her size, but Caramela had slipped off a rock and went into labor, so now Fuzzy, Oreo and Cookie have another little playmate.


Next Caramela the Goat had a baby.  My husband was disappointed.  She was an only child, though her mother had been a twin, and she was white, no distinctive markings at all.  We named her Snowy.



Then our gallina de pelea (fighting hen–the breed of chicken most often used in cockfights in our area) hatched a brood of 10 chicks.  Some are yellow, some are black and some look like little penguins.  This particular breed isn’t known for its nesting or mothering instincts, but she seems to be doing pretty well so far.  She picked a dense vegetative area up off the ground that gets full sun in the afternoon to have her chicks.  I told my husband he needs to make a ramp because, in a few days, the chicks will figure out how to get down, but won’t be able to get back up.  He said he’d work on that.

Then disaster struck.  Last week, La Blanca, our white goat seemed to be in labor.  After several hours, the labor stopped and we thought perhaps it was a false alarm or like Braxton Hicks contractions or something.  A few days later, I came home from work and my husband said that her water had broken several hours earlier.  This raised some red flags.  She ought to have given birth soon after.  She hadn’t.  She labored on and off throughout the night.  I didn’t hold out much hope for the baby by morning.

Once it was light enough to see, my husband gave her a check-up.  She hollered in pain when he touched her tailbone.  Further examination showed the baby’s head actually in the birth canal.  Extraordinary measures were taken, I won’t get into that, it was horrific. Neighbors were called in to advise.  Finally, the decision was made to end La Blanca’s suffering.  

The baby was removed and examined.  The uterus had detached and strangled the kid as well as preventing the mother from expelling it from her body.  We’ve had birth complications before, but nothing like this from the 100 or so kids, lambs, and foals born here.

My husband was despondent.  There was nothing that could have been done, but he feels responsible for the animals under his care.  It’s really set him against goats, although I’ve pointed out that over the years, we’ve had more problems with sheep births than goats. Then again, someone has a young female Boer goat for sale that he’s interested in taking a look at it, so you never can tell.


Filed under Animal Husbandry