It's time to read and vote for your favorite article in the 2013 Write-Off Contest! The four finalist's articles are featured in the May 13 newsletter and can be found through this link. Hurry! Voting ends May 18.
You've found the famous Dave's Garden website! Join this friendly global community that shares tips and ideas for home and gardens, along with seeds and plants!
Check out the DG homepage for a brief overview of what you'll find in this gardening mega-site.
Hi! I am new here, reading posts- like it!
Our problem: we went an extremely looong drive away ( this is my fault, of course) to get this billy goat kid- a savanna goat. I was not used to the breed- they are from south Africa like the Dorper, no that's sheep- brainfreeze...- anyway, savannas are all white, a little bit smaller, and can raise TRIPLETS without assistance, they are really good milkers. I am wanting a goat that will milk through cooler parts of year, and that's not the way most goats operate.
so- He was the cutest thing, really friendly - cuddly almost ( yes, I made a pet out of him) and suddenly - like a switch was flipped, he's BAAAD. using his horns on everything, BIG bruises on me, I carry a little piece of rebar out in the pen when I go in and I have used it several times.
the thing is.. I LOVE his daughters. They are sweet, fun goats, very healthy, extremely parasite resistant- I hate make up a holding cell just for him- but I know there must be nicer goats out there...
Sounds like he's just growing up. l think you want to keep the blood line, but how about a son? Might have some of Dad's good traits, but be a nicer critter? Or look into trading him for a nicer one of the same breed. Maybe to someone who has little actual contact with their breeding males, if that's an option.
I'm not familiar enough with goats to really offer any help, but hopefully someone will be along who can...
Part of the problem is that you made a pet out of him, instead of keeping him respectful of you. So now he feels he can push you around. This is what *I* would do - I'm not telling you to do this because I don't know you or the buck. I'd take a spray bottle and fill it with a 50/50 mix of vinegar and water and set it to stream. When he came towards me with intent, I'd give him a good faceful of it (several squirts) and as soon as he backed up/turned, I'd chase his butt around for a minute using a strong voice to scold him and the rebar to poke him and keep him moving away from me, or I'd get a switchy type branch and give him some good stinging whacks across his haunches but keep him moving away from me and use the vinegar/water again as needed. It wouldn't hurt him, but it would teach him that I'm not to be trifled with.
Disclaimer: this is what has worked with me for rams that were too forward. I imagine it would work just as well with a buck.
Regardless, NEVER turn your back on him. He's not trustworthy. He sees you as an equal he can challenge and he CAN seriously harm you. You might want to do like catmad said and keep a buck offspring, send this one down the line, and then train the replacement from early on by not making a pet of him and not letting him sit in your lap or climb on you or all those other cute things they do when they are small. Ram lambs are super friendly too, and it's so easy to cuddle them but you can end up with a monster that way. I have rams that I can walk up to and give chin scratches or chest scratches (never pet a buck or ram on the forehead), but they move when I want them to, and I will send them to freezer camp if they don't behave.
thanks for the welcome! I am hearing you! Yes, I know I was wrong to pet and love on this critter- but he FEELS so good. I have never seen a goat, on any other animal but a few breeds of dogs have this type coat- it's very short, like velour. In spring, he shed out the mohair, you could rub your hand over him, and it would roll up exactly like dryer lint. I do know about not handling a buck or a rams head- however, I have no control over my neighbor- a really good guy, a trucker, that loves this goat to death. Ditto for the goat. They run to meet each other at the back fence. so. another problem, don't want to tick off the trucker-dude..
I am not used to living so close up under people- I have always, all my life nearly, lived down a looong lane.
so when this last problem happened, I just was very loud---
actually, what precipitated it, is that I was creeping up beside the new mule, with a bottle of flyspray in my hand, hoping to at least spray him from the knees down.. I was paying no attention to goat, who smelled the mule reward cooky in my right hand.
I think I did get one good spray in...the goat charged in for the cookie, I kicked him with not much effect (flip flops)
he walked by me in a temper and hooked me behind my knee.
then it was GAME ON. I yelled that he was a fat little SOB, and I was going to KILL him.
In my mind I must have had super-powers, cause I was thinking I would just grab those horn, flip him over and Teach Him a Lesson- however, he spread his chunky legs and did not flip, so we were like some strange form of sumo wrestling.
I finally reached for the bug spray, and sprayed him on the end of his nose, he curled his lip up and snorted snot on me, said "Bwah!" and we both walked off stiff legged and called it a draw.
since then, the friendship is over, and I point my rebar at him, he backs up -- goes BWAH, and that's about it.
we may just have to make a goat prison for him.
he was born a triplet, and this year sired 2 sets of trips, off 3 goats he bred.
hate to send him down the road out of temper.
another option is having horns removed., after fly season.
will have to think on this further
ps- it was 2 weeks before I could get close to mule again with fly spray...
I don't keep a buck for just these reasons but Galles has hit it on the nose. Dehorning is a big undertaking and is hard on the animal. It's best to disbud but that is not an option at this point. You will have to rotate in new blood either through a new buck or new does. Unless, of course, you don't keep any female kids for breeding. Good luck with him.
Ha ha! Haystack, I bet the neighbors think I'm plumb crazy. I have been known to, more than once, chase mis-behaving rams around their pen, whacking their woolly butts with my stick and yelling "You wanna try that again?! I've got more where that came from!!!" :-D
peetz, your story made me laugh! That was a good try to flip the buck, but it sounds like you got his attention regardless. I love the "BWAH!" LOL. We've done that once with a ram but it took two of us to take him down, so I'm not surprised that your buck was able to stay upright. I remember sitting on this ram yelling at him "you do that again and you're on the truck to the butcher!" That was after he rammed my DH right in the thigh from a good 8 feet away. That hurt! After we let him up he went as far away from us as he could and stared at us like we were nuts. :) He did end up going to freezer camp - I didn't like his attitude and he didn't "feel" right to me, and he wasn't the greatest example of an Icelandic ram anyway.
Galles, we must have been seperated at birth. I know my neighbors think I'm crazy. If a roo bows up at me I run him around the pen whacking him with a stick and yelling threats at him. Then I catch him and do the Haystack maneuver on him. Of course, at this point his may may be hanging less from submission and more from having his hindend chased and booted until he CAN"T hold his head up anymore! LOL
Cajun, you may be right. :-D As a toddler, my parents tell me that I used to yell at our collie when she did something bad. Her name was Sandy, but I called her (for reasons known only to a toddler's mind) "Zoggin." As in, "Zoggin, you naughty god!" Yep, couldn't pronounce "dog" right either, but I was going to have my say! LOL
Too funny! When I was little we didn't have AC so the doors and windows were open to the breeze. I'd crawl down the kitchen steps to go play with my bulldog, Susie. When I wanted to come back in I'd crawl toward the steps but Susie didn't want me to leave her so she'd catch me by the shirt tail or put her paw on me. Momma said she knew I was trying to get back in because she could hear me hollering "Tu Tu". I sure did love that dog. She was born the same week I was and Daddy brought her home for me when we were both 6 weeks old. She was my playmate and my protector. Anybody messed with me and she'd have a piece of them. Daddy would pretend to spank me and she'd hold his hand in her mouth. She was a beautiful gray and brown brindle.
You guys are making me laugh so hard (I'm at work)!
Taking notes about buck-handling. I'm getting goats as soon as I can. I want Kikos, but they are hard to find here in NE Texas so I'll probably have to travel to OK to get some. It's sooooo hot here right now I don't think it would be a good idead to trailer them right now. Have the pasture, shelter, fencing, and water source are ready. Just need the goats!
well, that was one long pause... got computer back from shop.. enjoyed reading comments. Yep, I think this guy is on the way out..
disbudding is one thing, ( a GOOD thing) but dehorning is just not worth the effort- and pain involved, for this goat.
I think he might be A Bad Egg.
However, I do like his daughters, so I guess he was worth it.
Right now I cannot imagine being hungry enough to eat something that smells THAT BAD. He is in pasture with a horned nanny (sorry, she just IS, she is not nearly polite enough to be called a "doe") and he has worn her out. She is lying down, face tucked away- he is a lunatic. He's out there in nearly 100 degree heat, going BWAH, snorting, pawing her and hassling like a dog.
I expect him any minute to explode like the little bird in the Shrek movie. Everything else out in pasture ( and house!) would say YES!! if that happened.
He is now advertised for sale.
let's hope that happens.
see- this is how I originally got into COWS. years ago. I don't want to repeat the loop! There has GOT to be a reasonable alternative here.
My step sister had a goat dairy and they kept the buck in his own enclosure far from the does. When they wanted to breed a doe they took her to him and then took her out after the breeding. He was really big and really mean. They kept him chained in the middle of his pen so they could walk around inside next to the fence. They kept him because he threw good kids.
there is a ray of hope.. got a call on the buck goat-- they know the breed! seems like they want him! I am crossing everything but my EYES that they do!
They have 80 !!! goats- he will think he has died and gone to billy goat heaven.
They asked if he was friendly- I told her he was WAAY more friendly than you would like, given how badly he smells.
Good News!! the Bad Billy has moved on down the road. yesterday- it was nearly 100 degrees, the people came to see him, and all of us- both of them, me, the miniature horse, 2 llamas, a mammoth donkey and a HUGE mule, all crowded together to peer at this goat like we were in a zoo.
Sweat pouring off all of us.
The goat was not impressed, stood up on the fence and said BWAH- stuck his tongue out sideways at the man, and wiggled it.
the man said he would take him, on the spot.
I celebrated by putting a kiddy pool in the pasture, filling it, and sitting in safety, watching the dogs and llamas taking turns in it.
this is what happens when older people dont have grandchildren- they make them up! substitutes! ha ha!
anyway- alls well that ends well- goat is better off there, they are nice people, and were just amazed he was so 'friendly"
I warned them about occasional lapses.. but I think they'll all be fine.
Too Funny!! We've had goats for many years and if a buck has a bad temperment, off the farm he goes!! We had one the second your back was turned you could hear the thundering sound of hoofs on the ground. As soon as you turn around to face him, he would stop and give a sleepy look, "what?!" Turn around, repeat, and he'd be even closer! The last time I saw him he was in the back seat of a cutlass supreme with his face looking at me through the back window! Ciao Baby!!
good news, new buck is REALLY nice! AND the nanny goat that was being bred over and over-- well, she didn't take! guess she didn't like him either!
I put him in pen with her, and the deed was done before I got the gate latched- 24 hours later, all was settled.
new buck is registered Nigerian Dwarf, got too big ( hey, if you need a good buck, that's the place to look- ) got plenty of info on his mother, sister, saw his babies, and he looks like an itty bitty Oberhasli with a white spot on end of his tail and BLUE eyes.
took my critters awhile to realize he wasn't EVIL; in fact, the donkey tried to kill him on sight- word to the wise- Never Make a Donkey Mad- finally he understood that this goat was harmless. Now he's one of the guys- and has this adorable "beer wagon strut" just like a Clydesdale. Now I have to have one that matches him, in color, so I can have a pair to pull and antique goat wagon I have.
He's NOTHING like the Nigerians I remember having before- they might as well go ahead and make 2 breeds- milking Nigerians, and pet Nigerians...
soon as I am getting around more... I seriously threw my back out, dealing with hurrican debris and stupidly walking through mud almost knee- deep to see if there was anything salvageable in garden.
My neighbor across street just had an operation to fuse discs in her back-- AAARRGGHH!! I don't want to do that!!
this is just plain old, garden variety ARTHRITIS. Are there any forums on here that you know of - bound to be aching backs in a list devoted to gardening! thanks! must be some sort of remedy that will help some..
hey, funny goat story.. let me check and see if I have already listed it..nope- I have told so many people--
I had a store-bought peach pie in freezer, just KNEW the power was gonna go out the way the wind was blowing- so as soon as biscuits came out for breakfast, in went the pie while the oven was good and hot. and out went the lights, about 30 min later- didn't open the oven till it cooled, so the pie got about 1/2 baked. I ate a little, off the top, then just took it to the critters. Gave the donkey the top crust cause he needs the calories... the little goat was stepping on my foot and begging-- so I let him have a go at the filling, nothing else wanted it.
wow! Peach pie filling is the natural food for short fat goats! He hooked his chin over the rim, and just dug in. Eventually, had his whole face in it, dripping off his chin whiskers-- hilarious! ought to be SOMETHING funny out of whole experience!
My grandma had arthritis and she treated it with lemon juice. The juice of a medium lemon every morning in a cup of warm water. As long as she did that she had no problems. If she ran out of lemons she started hurting. She swore by it.
well, I'm off to the store for some lemons. :-)
What I have done in the past, and stupidly stopped ( well it IS expensive) is to get from JEFFERS, in the equine section, the Cosequin HA treats. They have hyaluronic (sp) acid, which somehow works in same manner as glucosamine/chondroitin -- which I cannot take, they do bad things to my stomach. ( yes, they are horse treats, but read the ingredients)
however, even though these treat have a type of ACID in them, so it says, they are delicious! and do no harm whatever.
when I used them before, I used my knuckes as a marker-- when the swelling btw first and second started to go down, I knew it was better.
been doing it about a week.. and it's better..
BTW- finally went, sniffling and snuffling to the chiropracter, waiting to hear I needed back surgery.
pop pop pop- said I had the "typical" duck hunters injury; they get it from pulling their heavy boots out of the muck.
ibuprofen, rest and no garden work unless I don't sink in ground. ha ha!
nope, no hay cravings yet. But my donkey does give me "kisses" so.. but he's always done that.
I just hope to have some hay to crave- ha ha! we are not packed in for winter yet, no hay! working on shed, and hay spot is BARE! scary!
And blackbirds are starting to flock here, in noticeable numbers...
the man I had contacted for hay was planning on having it cut THIS WEEK. He might as well have thrown it off the Ark.
I sure hope it's still standing... and maybe he can get it in next week.
I am currently wondering WHY we have a draft mule. He's already eyed me expectantly, wanting to keep his nice round figure.
oh my. That's like saying "I've never eaten potato chips, why do people like them so much?"
most dogs, heck, most PEOPLE don't have as much personality as this mule.
I would counsel you to RUN! ha ha! stay away!
Are you used to riding gaited animals? mules are usually exceptionally smooth- were you perhaps pushing his "past" his gait?
if he was going at a good speed, try this to smooth it out. SIT BACK. feet forward, balancing weight on your foot-ball area in stirrups.
pull back just a bit on the rein, see if he knows what you are talking about and bends his head at the pole.
if it's stiff as a block of wood, talk him slower with your voice, and when he slips into a fast walk, brandish your riding crop sidways, so that he can see it.
that will scoot up his hind end, and you will hit the groove again, so to speak.
once they figure out the gait you want, they usually try to stay with it, as it is easier for them and requires less energy than a trot or a lope.
hope this helps. it seems odd, at first, to sit BACK to speed UP, but it works.
I ride gaited horses all the time. I own 5 of them. Black Jack, the mule in question, is bad about nosing out. He has been ridden with a tie down trying to correct it but it hasn't helped. My friend took him on a trail ride down in Tn and vows he will never take him again. The mule never calms down and quits pulling so he will smooth out. He racks every step but it's choppy because he is always pulling. After a 30 mile ride he still never quit pulling. His legs are like pistons. Up and down so fast they are like a blur.
I dont know what to do with a puller like that. The last gaited horse I rode had such a hard mouth, from pulling, that he was very similiar. I had to keep pressure on him the whole time, talked to him, nothing worked. When I got off him my legs were so trembly I could hardly stand, I am too old for that!
hey, most ATVs don't have the best shock absorbers either! ha ha!
we used to have a gaited horse, a little Spanish horse, that was very hot, a real puller, when I was young. I kept working at it, in a ring, little by little, till he calmed down. But it was a touchy thing- you had to sit still, and only use the snaffle. Evidently he had been really hurt by curb bits. Like you say, the head came up- star gazing my grandaddy called it, and he got real silly at that point.
Shaq had nearly been ruined before i got him and his mouth was as hard as. I had to use a horrible big bit on him for him to even feel it but he was very respectful of it. He gave to it when he knew it was there. Some horses just don't give to the bit and they fight it. If they don't respect it they pull. I hate it when that happens.
I don't have any hard mouthed horses anymore. Shaq had been shown padded and they like them to lean on the bit. Not my cup of tea. I use a Tom Thumb with short shanks on all my horses except Max. He uses a simple snaffle. I lost Shaq to a freak accident in the barn. He fell and broke his neck. I was devastated.
Sad for you Cajun, was just imagining how I'd feel if something like that happened to my donkey. I sure do need to clean his lot up for him, it is still a mess. Keep thinking I can do it after I get my truck out of the shop. I bought an old diesel GMC that needed some work done on it. The mechanics have sure put off working on it. It's been months now.
Maybe so. My mistake was saying I am in no hurry too. They finally got it running by putting in an electric gas pump and a new gas tank, the old one had a hole in it. So, it is now running, then I said, well what about the steering, it had a lot of play in the steering wheel. So I took a gear box to them. It is now sitting outside again. I think they've had it since Aug. The owner looks like he is getting sick, the wife who runs the office seems fine, but he looks awfully sick to me. The son is in there being trained to take his place I guess.
He is the best mechanic in town, in my opinion, and I feel bad for him.
hi- just checking in-- sorry about the donkey! I would have been devastated too! I love the mule, but after awhile, he walks away- the donkey is a sweet boy.
Except when I put a halter on him, then his eyes get wild, and he's really hard to hold. I guess there must have been a reason for that, before I got him...
Anyway, I have found what I hope is a wonder-halter-- the Be NIce halter- got it in draft size.
you have to look for it. it uses the knots and pressure like a hackamore, but fastens neatly and easily, like English harness- looks classy-- I will let you know how it goes.
I sure wish I could send you my car repair man. He's got kinda long hair, has a big sign up that say " if you can't pay don't bring your vehicle here"
Hope your fella gets better, if you find a good one, treasure them!
do you think we should start a new heading on the front page here?
instead of farm animals, we could enter "hard headed animals" -- that pretty much sums it up, what we have been talking about.
you are ahead of me, then. I need to do the big open stall, bad, for the winter. I wish I could figger out which llama is pooping in there, I would like to change his mind about that!! I shut them out several days, hoping they will make a new place out in the pasture, but just as soon as I open that gate- there it is!! Fresh! For shame!