Sometimes we need a course on goat psychology…but then, if we understand them tomorrow, we might not understand them the next day.
We moved a handful of goats to the new farm, ahead of the others.
We did not mow the tall grass in their new pasture. We also knew the cedars and the tree saplings would be a nutrition-filled delicacy for the goats as well.
We chose the thinnest, oldest, and most “needy” of our “girls” for the first move. I wanted them to experience the fresh new pasture.
We should have known. No, in fact, we did know but never thought it would happen to our goats. They did not touch the greenery for the first 3 days. Each day when we arrived to feed hay, yes, we still supplement (in a lesser quantity), we observed the does getting thinner.
Our determination is that they were 1) stressed because we moved them, 2) spoiled to their old barn and twice-a-day hay feedings. Of course, they had no idea we moved them from an almost bare lot to something totally alive and healthy!
The good news is they are now eating.
Lesson learned, and shared. It really is best to not move an overly thin goat, or one that isn’t feeling well to begin with (our goats were not that serious). Even if you are moving them to better conditions, they are sensitive animals and could become ill from stress alone.
All are happy now!
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