So, we thought it would be a really good idea to get a Goat, as part of our Organic healthy lifestyle and make more use of our land and animal buildings and barn etc. Linda is planning to make cheese, yoghurt, butter and of course the milk would be for our tea.
We contacted Vic in America via Skype to ask his mum Dimka across the road for us if any body was selling a female goat in the next few months, April May time would be good for us, that would give us some time to prepare the animal buildings properly, this unusually harsh and prolonged winter has been difficult for the farmers and people alike here, many have run short on firewood and the farmers have run short on hay.
A goat arrives outside our house on the back seat of a Lada, she was female and pregnant, the farmer spoke Turkish, we could just about remember enough Turkish words from our years in Turkey to cobble together a sentence that he was running out of winter feed and needed to sell a pregnant goat (The most valuable) to ease his situation. We decided to take the gamble of what we would get, even if she gives birth to male goats these can be sold so its not a problem, we paid 75 Pounds for her because she would be in milk very soon.
Since people can ride in the boot of a car (Trunk) here, its only fair a goat can ride on the back seat.
Our neighbours said it was a good deal and that the goat was OK, we don’t actually know anything about goats being city people so thought we’d best check with our village vet that she was indeed a goat and not a three legged dog with plastic horns glued to its head 🙂 He confirmed she was indeed a goat, female, good condition, pregnant and that the babies were not more than a week or two from delivery.
We didn’t expect babies so soon, we decided to look on Youtube to get some kind of idea of what would happen. They start off with a kind of mucus dripping from the rear end, then a big ball of mucus goo the size of an Orange pops out….Then the babies follow, goats have between 1 to 5 kids.
My daughter chose the name PHEOBE.
Bloody hell….Its 8AM and Pheobe is in labour, the Orange sized ball of goo was out, we phoned the vet but he was in the next village, he told us to find our neighbours, “They will know what to do.”
As luck would have it Dimka was stood chatting to someone outside our gate, she called her husband Jordan and they came straight over followed closely by Yergi from the next street…..Then out pops the first baby!!
The birthing goat kit, salt, milk bottle and syringe.
Out pops goat number 2, salt is lightly rubbed on the babies to get the mother to lick them and bond with them.
Vestle the village vet arrives, he speaks perfect English so was able to tell us all what was happening and what we should do next.
The very first milk from the mother is the most important he told us, so Yergi and Linda then spent a little time getting the babies to suckle either from the mother or from the milk that had been expressed into the bottle.
Unfortunately neither of the babies were too interested in being fed, both Jordan and Yergi felt it was because they were too cold and still too wet from being born, they needed to be by a fire and dried off properly.
A hairdryer was used to speed things up, they loved it, tails wagging.
Once satisfied we city folk could cope with the rest, Jordan, Yergi and Dimka went home, big thanks to everyone, we couldn’t have done it without you!!
The last thing to be done was for a heat lamp to be placed in the goat house to keep them warm, unfortunately when we put a security light in the barn last year the old barns electric wiring caught fire a little and shorted out. So not wanting to use the barns electrics I drove to Trambesh and bought some bits and pieces to cobble together a heat lamp that we could work off the lawn mower extension cables from the house.
All warm and snug in the heated goat house, the babies are all dry now, their fur all fluffy and they are feeding from mum by them selves.