This is the second in my promised “Cast of” posts. You can see the first post, Cast of Characters, on my new Who’s Who page, where I’ll be adding all the links to the “Cast of” posts as the series continues. The link to the Who’s Who page can be found in the sidebar in the “About Me” section (under my photo).
My goats are my darlings. If you have below standard-size goats, which we do, they are similar in size and handling to medium-to-large dogs. You can pick them up, and they’re easy to manage. All you need is a cookie and they’ll go anywhere you want. They’re cute, fun, pet-like, loaded with personality, and smart. If I had to give up all my barnyard animals but one, I choose goats and chickens.
Okay, that’s two, but don’t make me pick between goats and chickens. I can’t do it.
I met Clover for the first time two years ago. She’s a Nigerian Dwarf goat, a breed known as mini milkers. She’d recently had two babies, and when we took Clover, we took the babies, too, cementing Clover’s queen bee role on the farm. She came from a farm with a number of does, so her arrival on our farm, with naught but her own babies, meant she was able to seize the command position in the herd and she’s never given it back.
Clover: “I was born to be worshipped.”
She taught me everything I know about goats. I tied her up, down, sideways, and inside out and milked her for awhile, till she wore me down and I survived to milk another day.
She’s bossy, demanding, prissy, and pushy. She’s the first to run to me when she sees me coming, and oddly, the most patient with my various machinations whether it be to make her wear a lace veil, a tiara, or goggles.
She actually halfway cooperates, which is either due to her utter devotion to me or to the cookies in my pocket.
I’m head over heels in love with her.
And she knows it.
I’m hoping she’s pregnant now, but we don’t know for sure yet. (In case you missed it, she had a very exciting affair recently.)
We still have one of Clover’s babies, Nutmeg, aka Rotunda.
Nutmeg is an escape artist and her mother’s closest barnyard friend. Goats are social animals and they have their cliques. Clover and Nutmeg spend their free time napping together, strategizing world domination, talking trash about the other goats, and keeping a close eye on my every move so as not to miss a cookie.
Nutmeg might be pregnant, too, but she’s not tellin’. She’s two years old now. (Clover is about 3 1/2.) We lost our dear little Honey, Clover’s other baby. He was a wether and a sweet, sweet thing who lived up to his name. He died mysteriously last year.
We also lost our wonderful, beloved Pepsi, our first Fainting goat. Fainters are smaller than the standard-size goat, too, but they’re just as big on personality. They’re beautiful animals with the odd predilection of stiffening up and falling over when startled, due to a genetic abnormality that makes them popular farm novelties. The falling over thing doesn’t bother them at all, though it’s a real obstacle for them if they’re startled by the sudden ruckus that erupts when I show up with treats. They have a serious disadvantage in getting to the scene first if they have one of their episodes on the way.
We now have Sprite, Fanta, and Mr. Pibb in our Fainting herd. Sprite is beautiful, charming, and very demure. She and Fanta both easily give over the barnyard power to Clover without a fight. Sprite has long eyelashes and a shaggy coat. She’s the good girl you can’t hate because she’s really as good as she says she is.
Fanta always seems slightly magical to me, as if she’s not of this world.
Her coat is sleek and her body frame is lighter than Sprite’s, more gazelle-like. She has an aura of dainty mystery about her. Sprite and Fanta are two peas in a pod, never far away from each other. They nap together, memorize Bible verses, pray for Clover, and try to stay out of everybody’s way.
Sprite and Fanta are both about a year old. I’ve got Mr. Pibb back in with them now and I’m hoping that they will be making baby bottle caps soon. Mr. Pibb is our new Fainting stud, and he’s my cutie-pie sweet boy. With his gorgeous coloring, I’m expecting pretty babies between the three of them.
Completely the opposite of cutie Mr. Pibb, Eclipse is the rough and rowdy Nigerian Dwarf stud Clover brought home from a bar one night.
He’s handsome, albeit disgusting. His buddy Rhett is another Nigerian, slightly shrimpy, and desperate for the attention the girls just won’t give him. I’m trying to talk him into taking up some hobbies. Fly fishing. Woodworking. Something, anything. I may have to let him sign up for some chat rooms where he can talk to girls and pretend he looks like Eclipse.
The boys are so nasty. I’m glad the girls don’t stick their tongues out like that.
You can see the full archive of my posts about my goats here.