May 31, 2012

Buying my first goat, Aphrodite

I decided to get goats in September 2011, and we started planning a goat shed in which to keep our future goats. I started watching Craigslist for goats for sale near the beginning of March 2012 and I spotted some nice looking doelings sometime around the third week of March.

The woman selling the goats that I saw on Craigslist bought her baby goats from a goat Dairy farm for $50 or so a head.  In her turn she sold them for $80 a piece to young 4-Hers. Does have to have babies to start milking but the babies drink a lot of milk so the dairy farmers like to get rid of the kids and sell the milk. Anyway, I went over to see if I wanted any. She had a 15 baby goats. Some had their horns beginning to grow, some were disbudded, and two were polled. After looking for an hour I finally decided that I liked one Saanen better than any other babies. She was a cute little thing who seemed to really like to be around humans, and she was 6 weeks old. I loved her from first sight!  I had decided to get a Saanen anyway because they are nicknamed "The Dairy Queens" because they produce so much milk.

Our goat shed was not done, so we asked the people selling the goats if they could hold the little goat for us for a couple of weeks. Meanwhile, I was running to the library almost every day to get one goat book or another to read.

After I decided to get the Saanen I had to face the problem of naming her. I thought up lots of names before I decided on naming her Aphrodite. I thought "Why don't I name her something German? Saanens originally came from the Swiss alps didn't they?". But I can't speak German. So I gave up that idea.   One day I was trying to come up with a name when I suddenly saw a book about the Greek myths. I really like the Greek names. I think they are really pretty. My favorites are Aphrodite, Persephone, and Andromeda. "Why don't I name her Aphrodite?" I thought. So I did.

We finally arranged to pick Aphrodite up on a Wednesday sometime in April.  We put a dog cage thing in the back of the car and started on our way. My heart was beating really fast. Could I really be finally getting a goat? I couldn't wait till we got there! What if something stopped us?

I was really relieved when we finally got there and I snapped a collar on her, and put her in the car. We got home without mishap, though I have to admit Aphrodite was in my lap, not the cage, when we arrived home.

Like I said, the goat shed wasn't done so Aphrodite got to live with the chickens. I kept her hay in a mini wheelbarrow and her water in a flat-back bucket from Murdoch's Ranch and Home Supply.

She seemed to prefer the chicken feed to her hay, which really stressed me out. A book on goats that I had read said NEVER to feed chicken feed to goats or "They will get bloated and will have to be taken to the vet" which, of course, is nonsense as Aphrodite neither got bloated nor was taken to the vet. Maybe the author had poisonous chicken feed.

When the goat shed was done we moved Aphrodite in. My friend Carina also brought her goats over (see "Meet our Goats!") and Aphrodite (who had been starting to think she was a chicken) soon settled into her new home with her new friends.

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