I was reminded the other day how many noises a farm makes. Also, that many of those noises are from the goat farmers themselves. Most towns, suburbs, have large areas where noise is not acceptable. Now the lawn mower noise is acceptable there, but only at certain times in case someone is wanting to sleep in or go to bed early. Dogs barking are a big no, no, and definitely, you'd better not be hiding chickens, roosters, or for goodness sakes, rabbits in your backyard. I wonder how much noise a rabbit makes?
So, you think of your own farm in comparison to the quietly managed towns and suburbs and we’re just plain obnoxious in sounds. What with all the goats hollering for their grain or just to say hello. The bucks snorting and bellering to the girls, throwing raspberry sounds everywhere, the livestock guard dogs barking at coyotes and crows and hawks, the chickens clucking and roosters crowing, and the list grows. Then us farmers starting up the tractor, using the wood splitter, running all over the farm in the RTV. The list just abounds in sounds.
Yes, we goat farmers do tend to make a lot of sounds. I have a gift of a very loud bellow. If I want them to, any animal or human can hear me quite clearly anywhere on the farm. Doesn't matter if you are at the back of the place, you are going to hear me clearly. I'm just blessed that way. I call animals in to feed, I call the dogs, I yell at any dog being bad, I'll holler information to Lee if my walkie talkie has gone dead.
The other day, our fat backyard beagle decided to go into the goats pasture to see if the big livestock guard dogs had left any of their food. Dusty Sue, one of the livestock guard dogs, caught him there and the most dreadful sound of a dog trying to kill another dog and that dog screaming for help started up. I was watering the bucks at that time and dropped the hose and went running, screaming at the top of my lungs, “NO, Dusty! NO, Dusty. NOOOOOOO.” Because I figured the little beagle would be dead before I got there.
Dusty Sue was rolling him all over the place, mouth all over him, roaring at him. She turned him loose when I arrived and he slunked back through a hole in the fence and sat by the barn shivering. I gave Dusty Sue a talking to and checked her over. Then went and checked our fat beagle. There wasn't a mark on him. No blood, no ripped places, it was amazing. How did that big dog do that? It had terrified both me and the beagle, but she hadn't hurt him, just taught him a lesson to stay out of the goat pasture and definitely away from any of her left over food.
But, all up and down the road, I could hear doors slamming, people running out hollering frantically to each other, “What was that? What is going on?” So, in my clear loud voice, I told the fat little beagle, “You are fine. You are in good shape. She just scared you, didn't she?” And, our farm with all the goats running scared to stand in a corner, and all the neighbors agitated, all settled down. The big voice said things were okay.
Now, we goat farmers aren't all quite as loud as I am. Even I can attempt quiet noises. Sure, I yelp and holler when a goat bowls me over. But, even I have days where I just say, in a moderate voice, “Ow.” Sometimes I might say nothing at all.
Two days ago I was looking at the six bottle babies in one pen and I bent over the fence and said in a loving voice, “Coochie, choochie, coo. Aren't you my sweetest wittle bottle babies. Aren't you a bunch of darlings?” In response, they all bounced up and socked me in the nose with their cute little heads. My nose quietly went snap, crackle, pop, and I believe a crunching sound was involved too. Tears of pain poured from my eyes while my sweet little darlings kept bouncing up and down, waiting for me to bend back down and put my face in their range again. The whole time they were making happy little baby sounds to me.
I just shook my head. What can you say? I knew better. I had forgotten myself and asked for it. I took my hands and moved my nose around and it felt like it was back in place. The tears dried up, but the nose was still smarting from the abuse.
I suppose that is why goat farming is done in the country instead of the towns and cities. The neighbors are nice and far apart. The noises we make rarely bother anyone, particularly if the noise is snap, crackle, pop, and crunch. Sometimes followed by alligator tears.