This highly technical term simply means a kid going ga-ga over brand new surroundings. We had this happen to a kid just a couple of weeks ago. We’d kidded out some March kids and the weather was so bad that I absolutely refused to put the young moms and their new kids outside. They stayed in the barn until I felt comfortable allowing them to go out and start "toughening" up. Besides, with all the rain I didn’t have enough canoes for all the goats as it was.
Finally, we had two days of dry weather where I could turn the new moms and their kids out into their own area, not in with the big herd. Now this one particular kid just couldn’t handle the new sights, smells, colors, and all those new goats and kids. We keep them in a large pen with run-in sheds and round bales for a couple of days. This pen has electric fencing running to the inside of the woven wire so the kids can learn about electric fence before being turned out into the big field that is all electric fence. When they learn what is "biting" them, then they know to stay away from anything that looks like it.
This kid didn’t even get close to the electric fence. She just took one look at her new surroundings, left mom, and at supersonic speed, ran around the pen screaming bloody murder. Her mom was totally puzzled and more than slightly worried over her kid’s reaction to the outside world. She trotted behind her kid trying to say soothing baaaa’s to her, but it wasn’t calming that kid down.
It just caused the kid to kick it into overdrive in her already supersonic speed because something was following her! Worriedly, mom kept trying to keep up to calm her kid, but finally just stopped and watched her kid charge around. It intrigued the other kids and they tried to keep up with her, but no chance. If there was a sport called Goat Racing, I’d have put this kid into training.
Finally, everyone just accepted the fact that there was a sensory overloaded kid charging around and they went to eating, napping, whatever, totally ignoring the screaming bullet that whizzed past them every now and then. Even her own mom took to calmly eating, just turning her head to check the progress of her highly charged offspring.
Sure, the kid would pause to catch her breath, but as soon as she had got her wind back, she was off like a rocket again. If this was a human kid, I would have taken her off of all caffeine, sugar, and artificial colors. Oh, and Barney, Barney tends to send me screaming out of the room.
Eventually the kid did settle down and I fully sympathized with her. I have had Sensory Overload on a number of occasions. In fact, I had one the other day. I was taking a small herd of around 25 Jan. does to their hillside pasture. We had lost our favorite babysitter of weaned babies that winter to old age, a crotchety old doe who moved too slowly to hurt any of the kids, but great for teaching them how to graze and get in out of the rain.
So, until I had picked another doe out of the larger herd, I was the boss doe to get them use to heading out to the hillside to graze. As the tight little herd stayed closely behind me, eying and oggling their lush hillside, I slowly climbed the hill, stopping suddenly when a five foot black snake slithered in front of me and just stopped to observe me and my herd.
Right at that minute I was having a major Sensory Overload. Not being a snake lover, I was having a hard time not levitating above the kids heads, about facing, and running screaming down the hill. Only thing that stopped me was the fact that the kids were crowded tight behind my legs and if I tried a screaming run down the hill, I would have fallen over them and the thoughts of me on the ground with a snake was causing even more Sensory Overload.
The shiny, fat, long black snake with a huge head, raised that head and flicked his tongue out to see what matter of creature was standing before it. Thinking that surely it would be more afraid of me then I was of it, though how that could be I wouldn’t know, I bravely stuck my foot out, lightly kicking the grass saying, "Shoo. Shoo."
The snake calmly observed my foot, flicking his tongue out. Evidently he didn’t know what "shoo shoo" meant. One of the kids, tired of the hold up, stepped around me and put her face down in the snake’s face.
I almost had another Sensory Overload, thinking if this had been a Copperhead, I’d had a dead kid on my hands. The snake flicked his tongue out again, satisfied, went slithering off under some rocks. To say I shot ahead at super speeds was an understatement. The kids could barely keep up with me. So, be aware, Sensory Overload can not only happen to kids but to any of us at any time, especially if a snake sticks it tongue out at you.