Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Baby goat breaks his toe

Mama Crystal comforts Gene when he returned from the vet's office.
My heart breaks when one of my babies gets hurt. So naturally I scoop them up and head to the vet. Here, our 2.5 month old buck is photographed with his cast on. Luckily he only broke one tie. But a bone break still hurts.

Be on the look out for more photos of him as we turn him into a pet. He'll start by learning to be a pack goat, carrying our water with we go hiking.

Wednesday, August 11, 2010

The sauna is working very well.

You just gotta love this humidity. That's why I look forward to cleaning the barn every morning. Morning is the ONLY time it could be cleaned because it's the coolest time of day. Apparently I'm the only critter out there who suffers.

We have two very large fans, ceiling fans, and a gentle breeze flowing through the barn most of the time. I can always tell when it's cooler in the barn than outside. No one is in the pasture. ALL the critters are not only in the barn but they're in front of the fans.

A site to see is Bentley, our horse, with his nose in the biggest fan. Watching the air flow through his thick main makes me smile. Our vet told me how spoiled he was. One of these days I'll send her a picture of him with his nose in the fan. THAT's  spoiled horse. That's OK. he's worth it.

He's not suffering the heat. Today is Gatorade day. Gotta keep the critters hydrated. Everybody enjoys Gatorade.

gotta go,

Friday, August 06, 2010

Just returned from my morning exercise

My morning activities begin around 7:30 a.m., just like most businesses. The big barn houses our does and kids. Actually, the big barn is where the babies are born and kept until they're about three months old. With so many critters in there and the surrounding pastures, it's a challenge to keep it clean and healthy.

When we first built our big barn we put sand in as the flooring. The good thing about sand is that it doesn't harbor bacteria so the goats could live in the barn more comfortably. But, on the surface, no pun intended, what seems like a good idea caused us to dig out the barn floor every year. We've grown tired of digging.

In addition to the sand, this past winter tons of hay, poop, and other unknown materials had built up and up and up. Cleaning the barn manually, like we did last year, was no longer an option. This year we hired our favorite landscaper/land-grader and his front-end loader to help clean it. I've learned that big jobs require big tools. We could move the contaminated sand but the urine smell was deadly -- we couldn't breathe. We quickly rounded up every fan on the ranch and turned them on full-blast to give us some relief. Sigh ... . Those living conditions had to go.

Well, the barn is now clean, most of the sand it out, and the odor is, although not fragrant, it won't kill you. The trick is to clean it every day. What may take about 30 minutes a morning, if neglected for even one day, takes more than an hour. I don't have to do the math for this one. Cleaning every day is much easier. Besides, I need to check out my goats every day anyway. This gives me more time with them.

We're looking for a new flooring material. One that will be comfortable/healthy for our critters while allowing the humans to maintain it easily and quickly. Got any ideas? Please let me know.