Saturday, February 20, 2016

Bowie the bottle baby

I am posting these pics of The Husband bottle feeding the little boy. He wanted me to take the photos, but I am pretty sure he doesn't want them posted here. So, for a few short minutes, take a peek. And then I will have to take them down. (Got approval to leave them up. Just cuz he loves this Bowie boy so much!)

I think Bowie is doing a better job of fitting in. It helps that the weather has calmed down a bit, and all of the goats are out and about instead of huddling for warmth in the barn. The other 3 kids, Blossom, Rita, and Ted are out and bouncing around starting at 6:30 am. For the past few days, I have seen Bowie out there with them, and the adults mostly ignore all of the kids.

The other 3 have made it a game to jump onto the backs of the adults and bounce off, but I am happy that Mr. Bowie is not bold enough to try that just yet...

Wednesday, February 17, 2016

Bowie's back with the boys and girls

Rain and warmer temperatures yesterday washed away the frozen tundra and left us with the lawn reappearing and an ice slick for our driveway.

Young Mr. Bowie spent 4 and a half days in a dog crate in the garage with a heat lamp to keep him just a little bit warmer than the double digits below zero outside. He is very happy to be a bottle baby, and we have given up hope of getting Lucille to feed him.

I was eager to get him back with the others so he could get back to socializing and fitting in with the bunch. I had to drive him the 50 feet back to the goat shed because of the slick driveway.

Since I discovered that he won't ever get the longer fuzzy coat that the other kids have, I asked a friend for his old dog coats. (Apparently beagles and baby goats are about the same size; it fits perfectly!) But when I brought him back to the barn, Ted, the other boy kid, decided that the coat was his new favorite chew toy so I had to take it off. Darn shame, he looked so cute!

I guess if he survived the freezing weekend without the coat, he will make it through. And just this morning, he was outside bouncing around playing with the other kids. That's the first time I have seen that since the day we brought him home. The adults are still not the welcoming committee they should be, but the kids must be thinking he could be one of them.

Friday, February 12, 2016

The frozen tundra

It is hard to believe that we got Bowie just last Sunday and it was sunny and 40° or so. All of the photos of him on here were taken that day.

We've had several snow showers since then, including some serious lake-effect snow squalls yesterday, and the temperatures have dropped. It's only going to get worse this weekend. This is for all of us who were complaining about the warm muddy winter we have had thus far.

Bowie boy is in the garage with a heat lamp. Since he was kept in a heated barn with other kids before we got him, he doesn't have the fuzzy warm coat that our kids have. I am certain he misses their company, but according to the forecast, we should be able to bring him back on Monday. As I see it, lonely is better than frostbite.

Even the dogs were not thrilled about walking out there. Woody lasted only a few minutes this morning and wanted back in. The Hub and Cyrus made it a bit farther, but even Cyrus's part-husky coat wasn't enough to allow him a good walk. Those are Cyrus and The Hub's footprints in the snow by the apple trees. Looks like they got that far and did an about-face to come home.

That panoramic view is from the bedroom windows upstairs at about 7:30 am. That was about as close to the outside as I wanted to be.

Wednesday, February 10, 2016

Letter to Lucille

Dearest Lucille:

What is it exactly that you do not like about this little boy? We think he is very adorable, and very close in age to what your baby would have been if it had lived. Except for those big white floppy ears, and maybe his big Nubian head, and maybe the fact that he did not smell familiar to you, except for all that, he is black, just like you. We drove an hour and a half on Sunday to pick him up just for you. You seemed so sad, so lost without your baby.

You have all that milk that would be perfect for little Bowie, and yet you prefer that we take it from you to drink, or make cheese. Why? He is not an alien, not an enemy. He is a perfectly well behaved little man who needs a mom.

So now we have to take your milk, store it in the fridge, heat it up and put it in a bottle and feed him 3 times a day. Is that fair to those of us who have cared for you these past 3 years? Is that fair to Bowie who left his nice warm barn with 8 or 9 other little kids in there to play and snuggle with? And what message are you sending to your 3 little grandkids who were perfectly happy to play with him when we brought him home on Sunday? Now they snub him just like you.

I had hopes that your great motherly instincts would kick in sometime soon, Lucille. I am rapidly losing faith in you. If I begged, would that change your mind?

With love and disappointment,
We who care

Sunday, February 7, 2016

David Bowie in the house!

Lucille is still not happy. Still standing at the fence and whining. But we brought you a new baby, Lucille! The bouncy David Bowie is here to answer all your prayers!

We might have to bottle-feed him until she figures out that we brought him home for her to feed...

These are just a few photos to hold you over until I can make a real post, Tara!

Last photo is Blossom in the hay manger. Her sister and cousin are underneath.

Wednesday, February 3, 2016

Sad Lucille

We thought that Lucille was pregnant with at least 2 kids. Goats can easily have 4, sometimes even 5. She is the oldest of the goats we have, and mother to the 2 other recent moms.

Yesterday Lucille gave birth to one dead kid. This happened very early in the morning before The Husband went out to feed them. We are not sure if it was born dead or died because of some issue during the birth. Because we were pretty sure she had more than 1 kid in there, we spent the rest of the morning waiting to see what would happen.

I called our friend the Goat Lady, who gave us Lucille a few years ago now, but she didn't call me back until later in the day. I also called the vet, and they had me come down to pick up a shot of oxytosin, which would induce labor if there was another kid in there.

Nothing happened other than Lucille took me in the barn and showed me the spot where her dead kid had been. She nosed around in the hay and looked back at me as if to say "he was right here, what happened?" Broke my heart.

Both Hub and I had to work yesterday, and it was difficult to leave her. The Hub milked her a bit when he got home. When I got home around 10 pm, she was outside, bleating, complaining, crying—not sure what she was saying other than she was sad. Not much we can do. She didn't settle down until around midnight. The Hub milked her a bit more this morning and said that Beatrice's kid was milking off Lucille. I am sure that gave her some comfort, but not sure that Beatrice will be happy with that.

Beatrice is the brown mama in these 2 photos from yesterday. While all of this was going on with her mama, Lucille, she found some time to sit in the sun with her boy kid. They look so peaceful together, and amazingly identical.

And the last pic is of the 2 boys in the house who also found a moment of peace together. Normally they are wrestling, or barking, or Cyrus is worrying about the ducks or the deer and telling me all about it—but for this short bit, they took a rest together on the dog bed. Unusual that they are that close together, even more unusual that they actually use the dog bed instead of the couch, chair, futon, or nice warm radiant heat on the floors.

Peaceful moments of any kind are welcome here.