Sunday, June 13, 2010

Elinore and Marianne

About 9 weeks ago I saw an add for two female pygora goats not too far from us. G had talked about getting some sort of fiber animal for some time. We visited them along with our 4-H leader and decided we wanted them.

Today was the day to go pick them up, now they are almost 9 weeks old. We left from church to drive to Lapeer. After a couple stops, lunch and TSC for last minute necessities and the latest MaryJane FarmGirl magazine, we were almost there. Even Todd asked "Are we there yet? Lake Huron should be right over the next hill."

We arrived to find a note taped to the door. We were about 45 min after the time I had said we'd be there. But the number the owner left for me to call wasn't working. So I hid the money and found the kids with their mama.

None of them were real sure we should be there, but the kids are little enough that they could be convinced. The Mama was small enough to handle too for that matter being 50% pygmy

They were very quiet on the way home, cuddling together in the borrowed animal crate.

Their grand entrance into the barn

Heidi had to see what was going on. (or maybe she was looking for a treat.) She responded with a motherly bleat to the kids' little baby bleats. We have to keep them separate for a period of time. Kind of like quarantine when you bring animals into a new country.

They were hesitant to come out of the crate, but came eventually

They found the water and salt block right away, but weren't too sure that we were safe. When G put the grain in their stall they got busy with that. It took a bit for them to be sure the alfalfa was good, but when they did they munched away and got closer to us.

If we got a hold of them they would sit quietly on our laps until we let go. Then they were off to the other side of their stall.

I can't tell them apart very well yet. Marianne has curlier hair on her body, less hair on her head and is bigger. She was the one to go to the grain and alfalfa first.

Elinore has more fluff on her head, but is smaller and less curly on her body. She took a little longer to warm up to her new home.

Here is an up close of the fiber:

It is still short because they are babies, but it is very soft and curly. Their dad's fur is very long and curly.

In this picture they are standing right in front of the door to their stall. The top of the door is about the same distance as from the bottom board to the top board.

After we had the girls settled and had moved on to other things, Todd was putting his good fishing poles away in the barn when we heard hollers for help.

Nothing panicky, but obviously something he didn't want to deal with alone. One of the goats (he can't tell them apart either, he might never be able to) had jumped the gate to the stall. He managed to coral them then head to the house for the cordless screwdriver.

The outside of the door.

We thought for sure it would be tall enough, but one of the kids had shown us her climbing ability when we were trying to get her out of her original home: She was on top of a box that was on top of an old kitchen cupboard. She jumped from there into the adjoining goat stall. After we got her sister out of the stall the climber jumped back in from the next stall. Then while we were securing the pen she climbed to the top of a pile of hay bales. Actually, with my back the way it is, it was easier to get her down from there than up into my arms to carry her to the van.

He grabbed an extra board and made the door a bit taller.

They supervised the redesign of their new home from the top of a dog house. We got the dog house for Hugs and Heidi. Hugs (the dwarf) like to stand on it to be tall. Heidi doesn't need any help to get up. She is our resident mountain goat. Todd and G made a small pasture for Hugs and Heidi. Heidi won't stay in. The fence is standard cattle panels and the door is a palate that has been added to so that it it taller than I am. We wondered if Heidi didn't "tell" the kids how to get over the door.

It should be plenty tall now, but we have checked on them a few times. It seems to have worked. They have been calling for their mama, but haven't escaped again.

Goodnight Heidi, take care of the babies.

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