Brooding On

1-Week-Old Chip

Chip was 1 week old on Wednesday.  At birth he weighed 8 pounds.  At his 1-week weigh-in, he was up to 12.5 lbs.  My, they grow fast!

I love the tongue!

I love the tongue!


Wednesday, our vet paid us a visit to do Chip's disbudding.  Oh, I hate it.  She uses a special device that sears the little buds where his horns would eventually form, killing off that area that would otherwise continue to grow.  He bawled terribly during the procedure, causing Little Boy to cry as he looked on.  But, as soon as it was over, he was back out in the field, jumping around (Fellow grammar crazies, I think it's okay that the "he" is ambiguous in the previous sentence, since both Chip and Little Boy were doing the jumping ;).

I can't explain it to you, but you can just imagine:  the smell of the disbudding is terrible.  Thankfully, it didn't take too long to get that searing-tissue smell out of the barn.  It really makes me sick to my stomach.  It does cause the little one some initial pain, but we feel that disbudding is the best choice for our herd and for us.  According to our Backyard Homestead:  Guide to Raising Farm Animals:  "Wild goats use their horns for protection.  [But] When goats are raised in a barn, their horns can become dangerous weapons.  Without meaning to, a goat with horns can injure herd mates, or you, simply by lifting or turning its head at the wrong time.  A kid butts its mother's udder while nursing, and pointy emerging horns can bruise or otherwise injure the udder."  

Because he is the only baby goat we have this year, Chip is incredibly spoiled.  He can often be found in the arms of one of our kiddos and is a fan of the swing where he enjoys rides in one of their laps.  He doesn't care for wagon rides, but will tolerate them if he's held.  :)