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12 DAYS OF CHRISTMAS
4 H FRETTER-ER
A BUCK GROWS UP
ADAPTING
AGAIN, THE SKY IS FALLING
ALL YOU NEED IS ... CARDBOARD
AMANNAMEDJED
AND THEN IT GOT COLD
AND THEN IT WARMED UP TO ZERO
ANGRY GOAT FARMER
ANTIQUE GOAT FARMING
ANYTHING BUT THAT
ARE BUCKS EVER BABIES
AROMA THERAPY
ARTFUL DODGERS
ARTIC FRONT
AUTUMN BOQUET
B U B - B U B - B U B
BABY BACK EXCUSE
BABY MONITORS
BACK TO NATURE
BAIT
BARKING AT GOATS
BARN SOUR TRUCK
BATTERIES NOT INCLUDED
BE HAPPY
BEAUTY MISTAKES
BEHAVIORS
BEHIND THE GATE
BIG 10-4 GOAT FARMER
BIKINI WEDNESDAYS
BILLBOARD GOAT FARMING
BILLIES & STICKWEEDS
BLIZZARD OF 92
BLONDE GOAT FARMER
BLONDE HUMOR
BOTTLE BABIES
BOTTLE BABY TALK
BOTTLE BABY WITHDRAWAL
BOXING SUNBEAMS
BRONCHITIS.
BRUISE OR DIRT
BUCK LOVE
BUCKETHEAD
BUCKS IN STOCK
CALLING YOOOOU
CAN'T TOUCH THIS
CANE I DO IT?
CARPAL TUNNEL HAY
CATCHING PEARL
CHICK CHICK CHICORY
CHOCOLATE PLUM
CHRISTMAS KIDDING
CHUCK
COLD IS OUR FRIEND NOT
COUGH DROP WORMER
COUNTING
CRUMPLED
CUD CHEWING CONTENTMENT
DAYCATIONS
DEAR FAVORITE RELATIVE
DELOUSED
DOES ANYBODY REALLY KNOW ...
DOES ON KIDDING
DOWNSIZING
DRAMA QUEEN
DRENCHED!
DRESS FOR SUCCESS
DUCT TAPE.
DUMPSTER RAIDERS
EARPUGS
EGG SHELL MASSACRE
EMMITT
EMPTY NEST SYNDROME
EQUIPMENT OPERATORS - DANCERS
ESCAPE ARTIST
ESCORT SERVICE
FALLING SKY
FARM WALK
FARMER C S I
FEEL LIKE A NUT
FIRST IMPRESSIONS
FIRST LINE OF DEFENSE
FIRST YOU TAKE YOUR SOCK
FLOATING MUSHROOMS
FORKS IN THE ROAD
FULL OF BULL
G G
GATE ATTACK !!!!
GIRL WATCHER
GLIDING
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GOAT ADDICTION
GOAT CELEBRATIONS
GOAT FARMER SONG
GOAT FARMER WEIGHT TRAINING
GOAT FARMER'S CREED
GOAT FARMING CAMP
GOAT HOLIDAY GIFTS
GOAT HUNTING
GOAT KLEENEX
GOAT LANGUAGE
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GOAT PROFILER
GOAT SCIENTIST
GOAT WHEELS
GOAT WRITER
GOATS RULE
GOOD GRIEF
GOT RUNS?
GOTTA WORK KIDS
GRAND CANYON OF CHILDRESS
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HAULING GOATS
HAVE MILK WILL TRAVEL
HAVEN'T GOT A CLUE
HAY MONITOR
HE-BE-GEE-BE'S
HELP! HELP! HELP!
HELP! I'M IN THE BATHTUB
HELPING HOOVES
HERD OF TURTLES
HERE COMES KIDDING TIME - A CHRISTMAS TUNE
HOBBLE, HOBBLE
HOLIDAY TRADITIONS (A GROANER)
HOME DECORATOR
HORNLESS
HOT CHOCOLATE
HOW TO BUY GOATS
HOW YOU FEELING?
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I APPROVE THIS MESSAGE
I FEEL PRETTY
I PREFER LONG EYE LASHES
I REALLY DO HAVE A HOME
I'LL HOLD HIM BACK
I'M A LITTLE TEAPOT
I'M STILL HERE?
INDIAN SUMMER
INNOCENT 1ST TIME KIDDERS
INTERNET AUCTIONS
INVESTMENTS
IRON WILL
IT TOOK TWO
JINGLE BELL GOATS
JOKE - GET A JOB!
JOYFUL
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JUST 1 MORE GOAT
KEYSTONE KOPS
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KID IN A BOX
KID SENSORY OVERLOAD
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LADYLIKE BUCK SELLER
LAST BUCK STANDING
LEFT OVERS
LETTERS
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M. D. GOAT
MAD AGGIE
MANIPULATE WHAT?
MASTER BLASTER
MAYBE THIS TIME
MEMBER ME
MIND CONTROL
MR. SNUFFY
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MUTTER MUTTER
NAMING GOATS
NANNY BERRIES ~ DEAR FAVORITE RELATIVE
NEW "KID" ... SHOWING
NEW HAY IN THE HOUSE
NEW KIDS.
NEW YEAR’S RESOLUTIONS
NORMAL
OCTOBER KIDDING
ODE TO ODOR
OH, MY
OUCH
PANIC ATTACK!
PAW PAWS
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PHONE CALLS
PHONE CLASS
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PIRANHA PEN
PLAYING DEAD
PLEASED AS PUNCH
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PLOP
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PRISCILLA THE HUN
PRO WRESTLER OR PUPPY
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PSYCH ME OUT
PUTTING ON A SHOW
QUIPS & QUOTES
QUIPS-N-QUOTES II
REAP THE WILD WIND
RECORD KEEPING
REDNECK TANK TOP
REFEREE
REQUESTS
ROAD TRIP 2003
ROCK ON
ROLL'UM ROLL'UM
ROLLIN', ROLLIN', ROLLIN'
RUB DIRT ON IT
S-T-R-E-S-S
SANDWICHED
SAWDUST.
SCHEDULING
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SECRET AGENT
SHAGA GOOBLE SHAGA BLIP
SHANNIGANS & KID SLOBBERS
SHORT TIGHT STEPS & OTHER ODD EVENTS
SHOTS
SHOULD EVERYONE VOTE
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SMART GOATS
SMUDGED
SNAP, CRACKLE, POP
SNATCHED BALD
SNEAKY
SONG OF THE FROG
SPIES, SECRET AGENTS, SPOOKS, AND OTHER GOATS
SSSNAKE
STAMPEDE!
STARGATE BOERS
STEAM-IRON SANDWICHES
STEP BY STEP
STICK IT WHERE
STOMPING ORANGE STRINGS
STUCK AGAIN
STUDENT ANALOGIES AND METAPHORS
STUPID IS...
SUNSHINE BOO BOO'S
SUPER HERO
SUPER SUCKERS
SUPPER AT SEVEN A.M.
SURVEY SAYS
SURVIVING KIDDING
SWASH - BUCKLING BUCKS
TAKING CARE OF BUSINESS
TALKING POCKETS
TATTOOING
THANK GOODNESS FOR MUD
THE $37.50 BUCK
THE 2003 DARWIN AWARDS
THE COWBOY WAY
THE DACHSHUND AND THE LEOPARD
THE DANGERS OF GUM BOOTS
THE FARM WOOKIE
THE FLYING GOATZANIES
THE FRAGRANCE OF HAY
THE GAME'S AFOOT
THE GOAT WHISPERER
THE MOB SQUAD
THE MORAL BUCK
THE PET CHICKEN
THE PIED PIPER
THE PLAN
THE SCARECROW GOAT SELLER
THE SMELL OF MONEY
THE TALKING GOAT
THE TARP ANNIHILATOR
THE THINKER
THE TICK
THE TRUTH ABOUT DOGS
THE V WORD
THE WINDY TAX
THE WORM HAS TURNED
THEN THE KNEE DOCTOR SAID
THIS END UP
THUMP, BANG, WHOOP, AND HOLLER
THURSDAY, THURSDAY
TIE THE ROPE TO THE HAMMER
TOO MUCH FENCE
TORNADO ALLEY
TORPEDOS AND TIDAL WAVES
TOSS THE BLOCK
TOY TRUCK
TRAINING HUMANS
TRUE LOVE
TWITCHY HANKEY
UGH DAYS
UNCLE ARTHUR
UNWITTINGLY
USING CAFFEINE WISELY
WALK LIKE A TURTLE
WALK ON THE WILD SIDE
WALK THIS WAY
WANNA BUY A GOAT (WINK, WINK, WINK)
WARNING LABLES
WAS THAT 65 OR 66?
WAS THAT CHRISTMAS?
WATER BUCKET TOAD
WAY TO THE HEART
WEANING WEANERS
WEE GOAT FARMERS
WELFARE GOATS
WHAT A DAY
WHAT DAY IS IT
WHAT'D YOU SAY?
WHATSTH THISTH
WHEN LIFE HANDS YOU VEGETABLES.
WHERE'S THE BRAKES
WHOOWEE
WIDE LOADS
WILD GOAT MILKING
WINTER LIST
WOE, DISPAIR...
WRONG.TURN!
YOU CALL HIM WHAT?
YOU COME HERE, NO, YOU COME HERE, NO…
ZAPPED!
Outlaw Boers
Krista Darnell
Childress, Texas

Trench Warfare in the Goat Pen

by
Krista Darnell

His front right leg was strangely twisted at the knee and clearly broken in half, and his rear left was similarly broken at the hock. It looked as though someone had snapped his hock, twisted the lower part of the leg 360 degrees, and then put him back on his feet.

My stomach lurched as I wondered if I could convince my vet to try to save him, but at the same time I wondered, how do you save a 250 pound mature buck with two broken legs like that? Visions of him wearing prosthesis flashed before me. Those sorry Akbash dogs that I'd bought to protect my goats had dug yet another tribute to the Grand Canyon in the goat pen, and now my poor Macho was walking on two legs as a result. Actually he was trying to breed one of the does on his one decent back leg. He was also only about 100 pounds and shrinking as I watched him.

It took a moment for me to wake up and realize it was just another one of those dreams that come after watching back to back Jackie Chan movies until 3 am while snarfing on pizza and soft drinks. Regardless of it being "just a dream", I promptly got out of bed at the gawdawful hour of 9 am and spent my morning filling the holes in the goat pens with gravel. Thankfully, no one came by to spy me doing this in my underwear, as there is already enough speculation about my sanity by those who know me.

It seemed like a great idea at the time, given the number of coyotes, stray dogs, and two legged predators in my area. A couple of livestock guardian dogs would be just the ticket to protect my precious hayburners, right? Misty eyed as any 6 year old at the pet shop, I wasted no time in securing a brother/sister team of Akbash puppies, and that's where the adventure began.

These tiny bundles of fur, brown eyes, and love quickly turned into 150 pound bundles of destruction and fleas within a matter of months. Where my sweet little Angel girl once could fit in my lap and was content to just be petted, now she weighs in at 100 pounds and and loudly announces the presence of every passing leaf, tumbleweed, and cat that dares to enter her domain. Apparently dogs do not suffer from laringitis, although I still hold out hope around 4 am. Cody went from a stout little puppy to 155 pounds within a year, leaving me to wonder if someone slipped his mother some Quarter Horse DNA when no one was looking.

While both have earned their keep, with over 12 dead coyotes and a badly mangled bobcat to their names in addition to numerous stray dogs run off with their tails between their legs, the two share an ability and an obsession for digging that rivals anything I've ever seen. We're not talking cute little "bury-the-rawhide-bone" holes that you'd expect a dog to do. Nope, these two canine demolishionists have vision and ambition, and are working towards creating the next Palo Duro canyon within the confines of my 20 acres. People often comment on the unusal topography of my pasture, believing it to be natural ravines. I seldom correct them.

My first introduction to their digging passion was during feeding time. While desperately clinging to a 5 gallon bucket of feed with one hand, and fending the hoard off with the other, I went to put my foot down in front of me, only to realize there was no ground there. I didn't hit solid ground until my knee was level with my other foot. At that point of course, the goats got the feed bucket, I got a wrenched knee, and my dogs got a lesson in Advanced Cursing 101. Afterwards, I filled in the hole and forgot about it.

The dogs however, only suffer from memory loss when it comes time to things like "Sit" "Get Down" and "GET YOUR %#$@ BACK HERE". They certainly didn't forget they'd previously left a hole where now a mound of dirt lay. Perhaps they were angry that I destroyed their handiwork, or perhaps they aspired to dig a crater I would be unable to fill. Regardless, it set the stage for what was bring me frequent nightmares for months to come. The next morning I was greeted with not only the original hole neatly emptied out, but three more just like it in various spots in the night pen. The goats had made good use of the holes, using them as personal napping spots. One was so deep that I didn't see the goat inside of it until I threw dirt on top of her while trying to fill it. I wound up having to haul dirt in from the pasture to fill them. I suspect the dogs hid it all so I would not have enough. It was pointless though. By the end of the week, the number of ravines had doubled. It was as if filling them caused them to reproduce like some creature from a B movie. Defeated, I called a truce with them. They could have their holes, all I asked was that they not create more.

They agreed to not dig new holes, however they did see fit to expand the existing crevases. One actually trapped my truck while I was backing a bale buggy into the pen. A tire fell in, and that was all she wrote. The tow truck driver asked how such a deep ravine (indeed it's a ravine, 7 ft long, 1 ft wide and 3 1/2 feet deep) had occured. I told him it was just an act of nature. I'm sure if I'd admitted the truth, he would have advised me to simply shoot the four legged backhoes and fill in the holes. It's hard making people realize the futility of trying to thwart this pair from digging trenches or convince them the dogs are worth the destruction. After this latest nightmare, however, I broke down and filled all the holes except the largest with a mixture of rebar and large gravel. The largest hole I left for the dogs to continue working on.

I always wanted a swimming pool, and it looks like I'll get an Olympic sized one.

 

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