Here are some 2022 goat updates. The year has started out not too promising in the animal husbandry department.
Stinky Chivo got too big for his britches and had to go. He was fighting with all the goats. He was fighting with my husband and son. He was just generally too aggressive, which is par for the course as a male goat matures.
Unfortunately, his departure occurred after he got one of the little chivitas pregnant. She’s less than a year old and it was no surprise when she miscarried. Physically, she seems ok, but the night after her loss, she cried and cried.
Then Chente, one of the triplets, up and died. He’d been not as active for a day or two, but as he’d always been the weakest of the three, we didn’t think much of it. We thought perhaps it was due to ticks and did a thorough check of all the animals and a dusting of cal (lime) to smother any insects on the ground. Cocoa and another of the goats did indeed have ticks, which were removed. No other animals got sick, which was a blessing. But poor Chente.
Then Jolina FINALLY had her babies, twins as usual. Jolina is always a bit of a dud when it comes to mothering, although her babies are always super active. This set was no exception. They have proven themselves to be the loudest dudes in the herd, probably because Jolina doesn’t respond to their bleats, which get progressively more intense until Papa Chivo (my husband) rolls out of bed to make sure they are getting fed.
Both boys are healthy and as of yet unnamed. It just gets tiresome wrangling Jolina into position to feed them every few hours. Oh well.
Enjoy the ongoing animal adventures of one family when they move to central Mexico and try to figure it all out in Animal Antics South of the Border.https://amzn.to/36ZuYEy
Our mightily pregnant nanny goat finally gave birth at dawn on December 12, el Día
de la Virgen de Guadalupe. She had TRIPLETS spaced about an hour apart. My son took one look at them and declared them “unremarkable”. They are white, with no real distinguishing characteristics.
Since they were born on such an auspicious day, the smallest, of course, had to be named Lupillo, in honor of La Virgen. It’s still a common practice for babies born on a particular saint day to take on that name in our area of Mexico. All of my husband’s siblings were named that way. However, we couldn’t name all three the same.
December 12 of this year will go down in infamy as the day Mexican icon Vicente Fernandez died. So it was no stretch of the imagination to christen the other two goats Vicente and Fernando in his memory, shortened to Chente and Nando.
Chente was born with weak ankles. He had a set of pipes on him that let everyone know his frustration when he couldn’t keep up with his brothers. My husband crafted a set of splints to shore up his ankles and Chente was up and around in no time. After about a week, the splints were removed and I’m happy to report that Chente’s ankles seem much stronger.
This birth wrapped up the fecundity of the Flores Ranchito for 2021. It was a particularly difficult year on all accounts. I am hoping that 2022 will bestow blessings on our animal kingdom (and human inhabitants) beyond our wildest dreams. Or at least I hope we manage to muddle through again like we do most years.
In the past month, we’ve had a bit of goat drama in the soap opera that is our life.
First, there was Lil’ Blackie. He picked up a mesquite thorn in his hoof, which was removed promptly, however maybe a piece got embedded deeper because over the next few days he went from limping to listless to unable to walk. We started an antibiotic treatment which seemed to help some of the swelling, but after a week, he was just getting worse. After a night of little goat crying and what seemed to be lockjaw paralysis, and talking to Azul the vet, we decided the best course of action was to end his misery.
Stinky Chivo has been the leading actor in our drama life lately. With his ladies in heat, he’s become mighty aggressive. On several occasions, my husband has had to wrestle him into submission to tie him and come in smelling to high heaven.
Stinky then decided to take the show on the road. The other day, when he was supposed to be grazing, he took offense at the shoveling actions of some workers on the other road. They tried to scare him off by throwing buckets of water on his head. That just enraged him more. My son and one of the workers manhandled the beast and retied the raging goat. As soon as he saw he couldn’t butt heads anymore, he went back to grazing peacefully.
Usually, when our macho goat gets this aggressive, we trade or sell him. This year we’ve run into some difficulties since the normal animal market in Puruandiro has been suspended. Furthermore, the young heir apparent, the next oldest macho in the herd, is still too young to assume the throne. So we’ll just have to restrict Stinky’s movement until the estrus cycle is over.
We’ve also been inundated with coyotes in La Yacata. They are always present, but their nightly howls have become direwolf in nature. It freaks Cocoa out (and me too if I’m honest). This morning, my husband reported that a coyote had nearly made off with one of our babies. Coyotes being wiley and all, Cocoa didn’t even notice it until it had already lunged. Fortunately, the goat-napping was averted although the little one lost her tail, but it served to remind us that the goat herder needs to keep a close eye on his charges.