Daisy/”Mama”

When we first got our goats, we were scared of Daisy. Not only did she have big horns, and a masculine looking beard, but she had a protector. Her “boyfriend” Grover was very mean, especially because he had gotten her pregnant. Read a little bit more about him here.

By October, Daisy would come running up for treats much slower than the others, wobbling like crazy, and bleating like a madman. We knew she was going to have babies at that point, but as completely inexperienced goat farmers we were expecting a winter due date. On Thanksgiving Morning (2015) I decided to go outside to visit Barnie and Rapunzel. I still wonder what possibly prompted me to go out to the fields, considering I had just gotten dressed, and was wearing a nice sweater and new skirt, with tights, and heels, and jewelry. In addition, it was a literal hour before our family arrived, and I knew that we would be bringing them out to meet the farm animals later in the day anyway. Still, I slipped on farm boots and went outside. I couldn’t see Barnie and Rapunzel (I later found out they were the farthest back field), so I decided to walk to a natural ledge around our pond, which has the highest elevation on the grounds. As I stepped outside, my first thought when I got a glance of Daisy, was that she looked awfully thinner. Her sides just weren’t protruding like they had before. I even said to myself “she doesn’t look pregnant anymore!” and it still didn’t register to me.

I walked up the hill to the pond’s ledge, and a white ball of fur immediately caught my eye. Still in denial, I thought it was a wild, injured animal. And then, a baby goat stood up! My heart would have melted (and it did a bit), but I was suddenly on edge. Not only did we not have time for this on today of all days, but we had no experience, and had no idea how Daisy would react to us. We were afraid of her! I called the house phone, and in the midst of getting ready, my family brought me gloves and a coat, and asked me to move the baby to our sheep pen for protection. This was a task that I was not prepared for. Daisy saw me by her baby, and with panicked bleats, she started to run to us. I was terrified that she would headbutt me, and I actually ran to an empty water bucket and held it up for protection. She did nothing. Artemis and Heidi were distracted by treats, so I quietly made my way over to the baby again. This time, I picked her up with my eye cautiously on Daisy. I would walk five steps with the baby, then turn around and bend down so Daisy could lick her and make sure she was still safe. We did this for one hundred feet to the sheep pen, until I could safely put the absolutely adorable baby down. Here she was on her first day with Daisy:

As people began to show up, they helped and doted over the baby goat.  I finally felt relieved and excited, but Daisy did not. She kept running back to where I had found the baby, acting worried. I realized that there must have been another baby, and automatically went on a search. Only ten feet from where I found Cranberry, was the area where she had been born. There, two more baby goats were lying together, and I knew automatically that they were not alive. They hadn’t even been licked off, but Daisy was still worried about them. The scene broke our hearts, but we put the babies in a box, and brought them to Daisy so that she could be with all of her kids. We were relieved that she was finally calmed down enough to let her little baby nurse. In the spirit of Thanksgiving, we named the baby Cranberry, and quickly fell in love with her.

Daisy is the leader of the herd, the alpha goat, and bosses everyone else around. But, as it turns out, she is also our most people-friendly goat. Not shy, and full of energy, she is always happy to greet us, and gladly alerts all of the other goats that we are coming (just in case we have food). She is an attentive and amazing mother, who absolutely loves Cranberry.

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