Thursday, March 22, 2012

Farewell to Mya.....and new beginnings

We said goodbye to our first dairy goat on Monday.  Yup, Mya went to live with her new family.
It started out as a sad day.  I'd decided two years ago not to breed Mya again for two reasons.  One, she'd had three deliveries with me, and all were poorly presented babies.  The first one she managed to squeeze out on her own as I was calling the vet....a huge single buckling came out with one front leg back.  The next year, she had Plummy, another singleton. 
With Plum, Mya was obviously in hard labor when I found her, but the labor did not progress.  She spent half an hour pushing and getting up and pawing with absolutely no progress when I called the vet.  The vet was an hour and a half away....and Mya wouldn't last that long.  So I got online and onto a goat forum and got advice....and a bit more than an hour later I'd untangled Plum and helped her out into this world. 
And that is how Plummy got her was supposed to be Violet, after our farm.  But I stuck in my thumb, and pulled out a Plum....and the name stuck.  Just like Plum was stuck, a big backwards-facing cork.

I decided not to breed Mya the following year, but she and Dorian had other ideas.  I suspect Mya told Dorian that the electric fence would only sting for a few seconds as he climbed over it, but then she promised him a night that he would never forget.  In the morning, I found them tired but happy.  Mya was pregnant again...with twins.
 And the girl was stuck firmly, in the same impossible position that Plum had been in.  But this time, I knew what to do, so it only took 3-4 years off my life.

We built an 8' fence and made the electric wire hotter.  Mya did not get pregnant last winter.  She was very cranky.

The second reason I didn't want to breed her again is that she tested positive for CAE, a disease in goats that is characterized by arthritis and other symptoms and that is passed on to the babies via their mother's milk.  This disease has been known for decades now and there is no danger to humans in drinking the milk.  So we kept Mya and used her milk for making cheese and such, but her babies could not have so much as a sip.  I pasteurized it and mixed it with as much of Ginger's fresh raw milk as she could spare, and bottle fed Plum and the twins.

Since Mya was no longer going to be able to contribute to her upkeep, it was time to consider re-homing her.  She deserved a good home, so I took my time (about a year, actually) to find the right home.  Through an ad, I found a lovely retired couple who'd owned goats years ago but could not keep up with having animals and working full-time jobs.  Now retired, they were looking for a nice, easy milk goat for their own enjoyment and to give their grandchildren the wonderful experience of  farm animals.  Mya is now the queen of 25 acres about 45 minutes from here.   I am completely confident that she will be loved and doted on, and is probably right now complaining about the poor service at her former home as she wraps her new humans around her little hoof and demands the best snacks.
She was a perfect angel about getting on the truck.
And enjoyed a nice ride with six of her hen companions in crates.  She was loose in the back of the truck with the window to the cab open.  I can't imagine what she told those nice people about me on the ride home.
Goodbye, Mya, we will miss you, but know you will enjoy your wonderful new be a good girl!


  1. Replies
    1. what great pix! she's going to a fabulous place :-)

  2. She is, and they won't be breeding her, so all will be well. Mya will live a nice, long, healthy life (she has no symptoms of CAE, never has) and will be much loved and admired. Sniffle.