A couple of times a year I get this one particular question asked by folks about my goats that are for sale. All the others who call never even consider it, they just come and look to see if there is anything that pleases them. This particular question starts off with how many did you originally have for sale and how many do you have now. Even if only a couple of goats have already been sold or we are down to one or two left, they immediately say, so you are selling the culls now.
First, I had to fight the urge to say, “How rude.” But, I control myself and because I don’t sell culls to people I try to explain how people buy. And, once again that old saying holds true here, what’s one person’s cull is another person’s treasure. Some would send a good looking, pleasant personality doe to the meat market because she only has fifty percent pigmentation under her tail. To many people this does not matter. They do not show, they are raising meat. They want a good healthy chunky doe that isn’t a trouble maker. And, many think they can put more color under the tail of her kids (no, not with magic marker) by breeding to another buck with a dark pigmented tail. So, it depends on the individual and what they like.
Secondly, I think I just made my point in the last sentence up above. Each individual has certain ideas about what makes a good goat to them. Sure, they want the correct conformation, but there are certain little things that they really appreciate in a goat. Each individual knows what they want to see improved in their herd. They might forgive a goat for not having as large a rump as they would like to see, just because he has a fantastic front end and this is what they need to improve on in their herd, they’ll buy him, and visa versa.
Or color, some like a huge blaze down the front of the faces of their Boers and you could not convince them in a million years to buy a solid colored head with no blaze and they would turn down a goat for that. Some want color down to the shoulders and they wouldn’t touch a Boer goat who’s head was only red.
Some wouldn’t go near an “orange” headed goat or a blonde headed Boer and some prefer these colors. Others like the reds, paints, and polka-dotted Boers and wouldn’t own a correct color. Then you have your correct color purist. Wouldn’t have a colored Boer on the place.
And, don’t mention black Boers to some folks, whereas others would buy one in a minute. Let’s talk horns. Some want horns on a Boer. Think that’s the only way it should be. Others would never have a horned goat on the place. I guess I’m a specialty market there. We disbud any Boer born on the place unless a customer asks us not to. Horns have caused us grief in the past and we don’t want horned goats on the place. Others feel the same way and will travel a good distance to get a Boer without horns.
And, then there are personalities. No, I’m not meaning the people, I mean the goats. Now I prefer a tame goat. A goat with an easy personality that I can get along with. I’m no longer a spring chicken and I’ve sold many does that were unbelievably beautiful just because she was hard to catch.
There you go, there’s people who can’t stand a tame goat. They prefer that the goat stay well away from them. They don’t want them in their pocket. Well, I want them in my pocket so I can lay hands on them to worm or doctor or just pet, if I take a notion.
And, then there are some goats with personality plus. I had a little paint buck walk up to a strict correct color purist, who had just given me down the road for buying two red bucks to breed to a few of the girls, This little paint kid just basically claimed this man. He walked everywhere he walked, stood patiently by his leg as he looked over other bucks and listened as he discussed their merits and what he wanted in a buck. The whole time that little paint buck was looking lovingly up at the man and his eyes were saying, “Come on. You really like me. Admit it.”
About ten minutes later, the fellow looked down at the patient little paint buck and said, “I want that one.” Forget all about how there should only be correct color and all the grief he had given me for getting red bucks. He wanted that friendly little chunky paint guy. Personality won that man over.
So, when people call up and think a few have already been sold so that must mean the best ones are gone, or find that there are only a few left, that does not mean some really good goats aren’t available. It’s just depends on what you want in a goat and what you are going for in your herd. It’s better to just go and look. There just might be a chunky little paint buck in your future.
And, just like one very serious 4-H girl said after carefully looking over the selection of 4-H wethers for sale. Slowly going over each one, studying how they stood, feeling the loin, feeling the hind legs, straightening up and studiously going over her picks, she finally pointed to one. “I want that one. He has pretty eyes.” There is no telling what will eventually make people pick what they pick.