Hmmm... well, first of all let's talk about what get's my lilacs. I happen to love lilacs and have over the years planted several trees so that I have many colors and fragrances this time of year. With that said I'm now at war trying to save that which is precious to me - my lilacs! "So, what's the problem" you're thinking "my lilacs are fine". That might be because you don't have goats - something I can no longer say. Here's a fact that I know without even using Google - GOATS LOVE LILACS - and I don't think it's the fragrance or the ambiance. They simply find them delicious. Now your logical brain is saying why did you get goats? Answer: Because they were headed for auction and most assuredly would be slaughtered for someone's dinner (yes, some people eat goats). Their alternative was Almost Home. It didn't take much...Dr. Tim said get into the van or be sold for meat - take your pick. They got into the van. Okay, possibly the fact that we had cracked corn and hay in the van and actually pushed them in may have moved things along. May I say these are very ungrateful goats? They are rewarding our efforts to preserve their lives by eating our lilacs. I might add that our hostas aren't safe. either. I also saw a twinkle in their eyes when they saw me circling things in the Burpee seed catalog. I know they're planning their attack on my garden - stay tuned!
These goats are a group of three. Little Miss Gretchen has a shiny black coat and wears dramatic eye make-up. She's your typical adolescent, including thinking she knows what's best for her whether we agree or not. May I mention she doesn't hesitate to tell us. Her brother Higgins was sporting the unicorn look. He lost one of his horns to splitting and infection. It needed to come off. It grew back, but with a mind of its own and curls at a very strange angle. Then there's their cousin, Powder - our little white wonder. Powder is a perfect name for him because when you tell him "NO", your very words disintegrate into powder.
Do I wish Almost Home had stayed out of this? Do I wish we would have just let things happen as they would? NO!!! I find every day more interesting with Gretchen, Higgins and Powder. What smart, inquisitive animals the are. I've never known such curiosity and creativity. For instance...they make up games. Gretchen has one in particular that she loves. We call it kitty cocoa butt. Here are the rules: When there are a group of cats in the goat barn (which is all the time - they share quarters with the feral cats), every time a kitty hits the floor you run at it with your head down like you're going to gore it (this is only if you're a goat - if you do this and you're a person, you could be hospitalized for evaluation). Then the kitty jumps back up onto whatever upper surface it is near and another one jumps down. The chase is then on in cocoa butt position. That kitty jumps up and another jumps down. You get the drift. I believe the cats think you can kill a goat with exhaustion. The great thing is when the game is over and all are tired, they all curl up and sleep together.
What still throw me into absolute wails of laughter even when I'm all alone is trying to lead a goat on a rope. It's just too funny. Our little dears wear collars. When we need to get them from point A to point B we put a leash on them. Then the antics begin. Just a little tug sends the now captured goat into a fit that highly resembles a very severe seizure. We jump up into the air, landing on our backs, bleating as if a knife was just thrust into a main artery. Then another tug on the rope will put them on their backs being literally dragged. When you stop, they stand up and start the rock star leap into the air again. It's really a sight to behold.
Life has changed at Almost Home adding another species. But to think that these little guys would have been slaughtered makes me cringe. I'm grateful for what they have added to an already magical place.
If you wish to help Almost Home with your donations, they can be sent to Almost Home Animal Sanctuary, 6251 Hart Road, Little Valley, N.Y. 14755, and your donations are tax deductible! We thank you!
Welcome to our blog site. Pictures of the animals on arrival are combined with stories after their rescue.
Timothy O'Leary DVM
Timothy O'Leary DVM