Today's Quote

“If people let government decide what foods they eat and what medicines they take, their bodies will soon be in as sorry a state as are the souls of those who live under tyranny.” Thomas Jefferson

Saturday, September 25, 2010

Making tough decisions

Homesteading requires making tough decisions at times. We are coming close to having to make one of those tough decisions within our goat herd. I have a doe that still has not given us any offspring nor milk. When we bought her, she was supposed to be pregnant. She wasn't. We really didn't consider that too big of a deal because she was wild as could be and didn't want to have anything to do with us. So it gave us time to work with her. She is now a loving wonderful doe. We thought we would finally get a baby out of her since last season she was bred to our buck. Yes, we know he bred her and then no heat cycles. She should have kidded this month. Guess what, no milk...and she has returned to her heat cycles. So this breeding season will be her last chance. I am going to talk to my vet this week and see what he thinks we should do. Maybe some lutalyse will help, I don't know. I do know that we can't feed a non producing animal. It is a hard decision, but one that homesteaders must face from time to time. I know some say I could sell her and that would be fine if someone just wanted her for brush control or as a companion animal. She still is not trusting of strangers and is really only loving with me. My husband and daughters can work around her, but she is skittish. She is a beautiful nubian and I hate this part of this life. I have another goat that I would have no problem putting in the freezer, but she gives me half a gallon a day while nursing triplets. She is a pain in the neck though. So here is praying that the vet and I can figure out this issue and we can get the problem solved so that Tea doesn't have to go to freezer camp. The fact of the matter on a homestead is that livestock is just that....livestock. It needs to be earning its keep or it doesn't need to be there. Even my dogs and cats are expected to earn their keep. I don't keep animals just for the fun of it, I keep them to provide for us and when they are not doing that then they are just a drain on the homestead. Making these decisions is one of the hard parts of this life and something that everyone thinking about this lifestyle must face. It wouldn't be fair to sell this animal to someone thinking they could use her for milk production if she can't get pregnant. Well, we will see what the vet says and what spring brings us. Blessings from the farm, Kat

1 comment:

Kelle said...

I understand, as we've had to make a similar descision. only with our Dexter cow. We've AI'ed her twice, then sent her to the bull for two months. She never had a heat cycle after visiting the bull but yet she never calved either. In fact she still has NOT had a heat cycle. We spoke to a vet and he said she has a hormone problem. So, if we take into account that we've wintered her twice, had the expense of the two AI'ings, the board and bull fee for two months and no calf and no milk, the descision now is she'll be burger in our freezer*sigh*
I've learned that sometimes, even though it is hard to choose to cut your losses it's best to follow your instinct. Praying your does gets bred and freshens for you next Spring.