Tuesday, March 4, 2008

Chicken and a Goat....

Well, today was a "more then usual" eventful day.
I have a Goat story to tell AND a chicken story!
First the goat -
I have been watching the goats fairly close lately, since it is kidding season. This morning, I noticed one of the pregnant Does was acting a little "off", so I looked in on her several times throughout the day. I had to leave for about an hour this afternoon, so I checked in on her before I left. Everything was fine.......so far.

When I got home, I needed to make a couple of phone calls, so I headed for the house for a few minutes. After about 10 minutes, I headed for the barn. I figured I would check in on things, then head to a nearby farm to collect a few boards from the barn that was torn down - if things were ok.

I got about 10' from the house when I heard an odd "beller" coming from the goat pens. I KNEW what it meant, so I called my wife (ain't cell phones grand......?) and told her my plans were changed. Sure enough, there that doe was, in the midst of giving birth.

I got my milking stool and went into the pen to be beside her. This was the second season we've had this goat, but her first kid, so I didn't know how she would react. One look at her face, and I figured it out.

She wanted MORPHINE! She kept looking at me with tearful eyes, as if to ask, "WELL, how about doing SOMETHING?". It all made me wish I had taken some sort of "Goat Lamaze Class" or something. Here she was, laying there in the middle of things and all I could do was to tell her to "breathe" and "push".

Our Billy came in to look over my shoulder. He got an evil eye from her, so quickly made an exit. He's not even the father and he's in trouble......

Most of the other does had been through this before, so they just waited in the "waiting room", quietly eating hay. Every once-in-awhile, I'd feel one of them grab a belt loop of my jeans and give it a tug, but they mostly kept to themselves.

It took awhile, but she finally pushed the baby out. I dried it off a bit and gave it to mom so she could sniff, lick, and bond with it. The fun part was using the hair dryer to get the baby dried off. I set the baby on a chest high shelf I have and started the warm hair dryer on her ears. At first, she didn't like it and squawked loudly (mom LOVED that part). It only took about 30 seconds of the nice warm air on her and she figured out that it felt NICE. I made sure her ears, head, body and belly were nice and dry before I gave her back to mom. I guess, being a girl, she could get addicted to the hair dryer if I'm not careful. Lipstick and eyeliner are probably next......

Now for the Chicken story....

About a year and a half ago, I was out in one of my sheds. This shed is open to the east, so the chickens can get in it very easily. I had noticed one of my biggest roosters had been missing for about 10 days or so. I figured that something bigger then he had "got" him. I was right - sort of....

While I was in the shed, I needed to use a metal bushel sized tub I have. It's one of those that has a rounded bottom. The last time I used it, I had set it beside a 55 gallon barrel - top up. It was now sitting in FRONT of the barrel - up side down.

I didn't think this was odd. After all, I am used to the chickens "re-arranging" things. I just reached down, grabbed the handle of the tub, and lifted it up. Guess where I found the rooster....

Unfortunately, he was a BIT beyond CPR....

Now, fast forward to today...

I have several barrels of chicken feed in the barn. One has a lid that is a "careful" fit because the barrel is out of round. It's such that an unsuspecting chicken can land on it and soon find themselves looking UP at the lid instead of DOWN at the lid. Sort of like one of those flip top trash cans.

I was collecting eggs in the barn, playing midwife to the goat, and generally getting things ready to close up for the night when I noticed that the lid looked like it had been molested. I thought for a second about just refitting it and calling it good. For some reason, I opened the lid to look inside. I found 1/2 a barrel of feed and a VERY stuffed rooster.

I don't know how long he'd been in there, but he hardly put up a fuss when I grabbed his ankles. His crop was definitely full and his face was covered in feed. He wasn't impressed with me brushing his face off! He didn't even seem to mind the "upside-down, hang by the ankles" trip to the coop. I put him on the floor in the coop, and he waddled over to the roost and got on the LOWEST rung. I'm sure glad I found him tonight, he probably would have eaten himself to death by morning.

I may need to call Jenny Craig on him.....


  1. It sound like you had quite an eventful day. The "livestock" is really fun to have around.

    I like your stories about them.


  2. ahhh that tearful eyes part got me!! Poor baby! I love your stories too!


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