A friend sold us Angie, Wendy and Jolene. He stopped by our farm on the way to the market and offered them to us. I couldn’t resist buying them. Although the insisted they were Boers, their size and markings caused me to think they had some pygmy in them. And they were terrified of humans and seemingly untameable. I wondered if they’d ever breed properly and I sometimes regretted adding them to our herd.
But over time, they settled in and grew. All successfully kidded. Angie’s second kid ended up bringing the highest price we’ve ever gotten for a buckling.
One day I offered a slice of bread to Angie and to my surprise she took it. From that day forward her timidity began to vanish. Eventually she was as tame as any of our goats. Her favorite treat was bread, but I rarely let them have any. She was happy to eat sunflower seeds out of my hand instead.
Last year she gave us twin doelings who Cherie named Bianca and Jade. They’re pretty little things. Their first birthdays are coming up soon and they should give us Angie’s first grandkids in the Fall.
A couple of months ago Angie delivered twin males.
A few mornings ago I went to the barn and found Angie lying in our horse Rowan’s stall. To my surprise, I found her to be very weak and very sick. I had seen no evidence of it before.
I picked her up (as best I could) and carried her to a clean stall. She stood, but had no energy. I offered her a slice of bread and she wouldn’t eat it. I knew the situation was very serious.
I wormed her, disappointed that I hadn’t noticed her sickness and intervened sooner. I spent some time with her, and left her that evening, hoping she’d recover as our sick goats often have before.
But when I went to check on her the next morning, Angie was no longer alive.
It was a very sad morning for me. I was very fond of Angie and very sorry to lose her. I carried her to a remote part of the farm, where she will return to the soil from which we all came.
Angie died at a time our farm is exploding with new life. As I was preparing to carry her away, I came across a mother snapping turtle crawling toward a place to lay her eggs. As I carried her off I came across a mother wild turkey, protecting her nest in our hayfield. After I laid Angie to rest, I checked our bees and found the hive filled with brood that will soon produce a new generation of honeybees. Just beyond the beehives I could see the corn and potatoes popping up in rows. A couple of days after we lost Angie, Penny kidded for the first time, giving us twin males.
Angie will be missed. She was a sweet good goat. But even as we say goodbye to her, we welcome new life all around us.