My current home doesn't have a verandah but I'd like it to! A long porch surrounding the entire house. With a porch swing, potted blueberry plants, and a long strong dog laying at my feet. The sweet smell of lrosemary and freshly-turned soil wafting across my yard. The chickens clucking contentedly as they scratch for goodies in the fertile dirt. Knowing we have a full root cellar, trees in the orchard about to drop their bounty, and soup made all from hand-picked harvests bubbling in the crockpot. Heaven.

Please move with me over to my current blog, www.rosemary-ridge.blogspot.com ... thank you!

Goat First Fresheners vs New Milkers

Just a little advice: If you're looking to own a goat for the first time, and have never milked anything, especially a goat, before... DON'T get a first freshener! (Pic to the right is the first freshener "milking" goat we bought, Cocoa, before we got her, with her baby Firefly Zoe.)

On the one hand, you have a a goat who's never had her teats pulled on before, or who's never had to stand still on a stanchion before. She also doesn't understand that it needs to happen regularly.

On the other hand you have someone who doesn't quite get how to pull on those teats or how to treat the goat. Or that it needs to be done on a regular schedule. Or that you need to clean the teats and udder before milking, and express the first 5 "pulls" onto the ground because it usually contains bacteria.

Could you buy a first freshener that is a couple of months down the road from being milked for the first time? I guess. IF you trust the person you are getting her from and IF you not only SEE the person milk the goat from getting her up on the stanchion to cleaning her up to milking her to even trimming her hooves. Then, maybe, yeah.

So... if you're looking to buy a goat and you're NOT experienced, I have two recommendations:
-lend yourself to a nearby goat person to do a regular milking (maybe every evening for a couple of weeks or months, FOR FREE)
-buy a goat that is a second freshener (this is her second birthing/kidding/year).

Believe me, after that horrible experience with Patricia and Crowley Manor's Nigerian Dwarf goat purchase debacle, I've learned the above, and more:

-always check the goat's hooves to make sure they've been trimmed.
-make sure you know what a goat's hooves are supposed to look like!
-do not make a deposit or contract on a goat unless you examine the goat
-feel her body to make sure she'll accept your touch, and to see if she's malnourished
-google the breeder and the goat to find out if she's been talked about positively or in any way
-get the goat's pedigree in writing BEFORE the deposit or contract signing so you can check it
-do not make a deposit or contract on a goat unless you get in writing that she is milkable (will stand still and allow her teats to be pulled)

I'm sure there are more tips, but I'm drawing a blank here. Anybody else care to comment?

= = = =

I keep up with the blog "Fed Up With School Lunch" and recently read this post: http://feedproxy.google.com/~r/FedUpWithLunchTheSchoolLunchProject/~3/IWVJ8Jy-vUM/mcdonalds.html - Got me thinking about my Kid, who schools at home, and how we eat out on the rare occasion. The Kid has been gluten-free for a long so when we infrequently go to McDonald's, he gets the apple dippers minus the caramel-crap, a while milk or two. Sometimes the two of us share a fries, hold the salt. When we infrequently go to Subway, he gets 3 slices of turkey and a handful of olives plus a white milk. At Village Inn, he used to get 4 scrambled eggs and 4 slices of bacon but nowadays, he gets 2 applesauces, 1 yogurt and sometimes a baked potato with orange juice to drink.

He really eats pretty healthy. Lots of fresh veggies and fruit, home-laid eggs, gluten-free breads and cereals, bean/peas/lentils, cheese melted on tortills chips (calls it a melt-down) and gf mac-and-cheese. Lots of water. Sometimes a gf cookie or bit of chocolate bar.

No depravity here.

But he's having a hard time lately so has asked to see if he still has a problem with gluten/wheat. (It makes him very hyper.) We've agreed, and are planning for him to have wheat all day this coming Monday. Going to stay at home so it will be somewhat a controlled experiment. Will make bread with cinnamon and walnuts. Probably "Life Cereal" which is his favorite but hasn't had it in a LONG while. No other processed foods or those with lots of chemicals, additives or dyes.

He'll be carefully watched for changes in his behavior.

Ah, the Great Gluten Experiment. Stay tuned.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Couldn't agree more regarding the goats. Bought 2 goats once upon a time when we thought we'd try having a bit of a farm. We were both raised in a city, but having visited farms on many occasions thought, well, how hard can it be. The 2 goats had 3 kids that were really cute but did stuff like get out of the fence to eat our newly planted trees and climb on top of our vehicles. As for milking them, well, lets just say that after trying it for a while we packed them and their young ones into a trailer, brought them back to the auction mart, and came home with some ducks. The ducks were a great lot of fun. Highly recommend them.