We recently learned that Johnson grass can be toxic in drought conditions. This too, may be contributed to their demise. We’re now making a conscious effort to remove all toxic plants from our pastures before releasing the goats. Contrary to popular belief, goats cannot eat everything and anything. Our goats produce milk that we use every day so their health is our foremost concern. We make sure the best grasses are growing by inspecting our pastures frequently throughout the year.
We had almost three months with those two ladies and we were hooked on having dairy goats in our lives forever. Because of the painful yet valuable lessons we learned, we now have a quarantine area in the basement/barn where new goats live until they have ALL their shots, along with boosters, and are examined by our Large Animal Veterinarians. Being new at ranching, we have learned to listen to our long-time rancher friends AND talk to our veterinarians.
But most of all, we have learned to listen and observe our animals. We watch them walk. We check their eyes, gums, and manure. We’re with them every day. Then we make decisions based on what is best for that individual animal. We tend to treat our livestock like we treat our dogs. They’re pets. We’ve made the commitment that all of our animals will always be treated with respect and love. After all, they are not only in our lives, they are our livelihood.