I prefer winter and Fall, when you feel the bone structure of the landscape — the loneliness of it, the dead feeling of winter. Something waits beneath it, the whole story doesn’t show. ~Andrew Wyeth

Friday, October 28, 2011

Silliness Beyond All Reason Over a Covered Deck for Brownie

They came into the goat house area as if a foreign creature of mythical proportions had arrive before them.
"What do you suppose this is?", cried Freckles, as he looked over at Murphy.
"Well I'm not sure." Murphy answered, " It wasn't here before."
 Bart, who thinks he is the leader of the pack, just stared at the new "thing" that had suddenly appeared.
 Then, thinking he needed to do something about this, he jumped up and sniffed the end of the offensive "thing" that was blocking the doorway.
Freckles watched Bart's every move. He felt that he needed to do something too, so ...
He first tried to lift the top"thing" off of the new post "thing". Then he tried to eat it.
None of this worked.
Then he tried to lift it with his head.
 If Freckles had been about a foot taller this might have worked... but he wasn't and it didn't.
Then he had a moment of ..."This goat isn't going to be able to remove this thing"
He finally stood there, like all the rest of them, looking up at the strange new object.

Only Brownie was missing. He was watching all of this from behind the goat house.
 Brownie is the reason for this new change . These three, wonderful goat boys keep pushing Brownie out of the goat house and winter is on its way... so we have decided to build an overhang and deck in front of the goat house. Yes, we do what we can. It's all about the animals around here
You see. Brownie got badly hurt last spring when he got a horn caught in the feeder inside the goat house. He preceded to panic. He ripped the horn off, spewing blood everywhere, sending the herd into total chaos.
He has had a bad time of it every since. He has been rejected by the others and, as typical of animal behavior as this is, it's very had to watch.
Brownie is weak, has been treated for Coccidiosis and (I think) he damaged part of his brain when he did this horrible thing to himself. His motor movement is slow and he is not as sure footed as goats should be.
So knowing that he is doing the best he can.. and that he has gained weight since he lost so much after the accident, we spoil him.
He gets fed apart from the rest of the goats and also gets extra carrots and peanuts to give him more calories and protein.
He is doing well but he keeps his distance from the other goats. He even sleeps outside next to the door of the goat house. So, we decided to build a small deck and overhang to protect him from the elements this Winter. We really do love this goat and feel he has had enough trauma without having to sleep on the cold ground in the rain. I'm sure this would be the last straw for him.
Yes, this is a labor of love. When it rains, we have noticed that they do let him into the house but most of the time he's sitting outside. 
So.. the Prospector has finished the potting shed and has started on the overhang for Brownie.
 This is the man who says that he can't build anything. He amazes me. Always has. When he puts his mind to something ... he just does it. He says, " I'm no carpenter.". Yea, well.. you are sweetie. You really are.
He swears a lot while he does it, but he does it and it's always a great job.
This morning the over head framing is almost done and the metal roof will be installed. Then the Prospector will start the decking.
Again, the goats will have to get use to another different and new "thing" in their lives. A new step up before the familiar one. As with all of us...
 Murphy, after an initial rub against the new"thing", was the calming influence in all this. He is always the first to accept new "things". He senses the good and bad of things...the yin and yang, as it were.
He knows this is for Brownie. I even saw him touch noses with Brownie yesterday afternoon. He probably told Brownie that it would be OK.
He is an amazing goat. Always at one with his surroundings. Always the peacemaker.


Bart... not so much. He's still annoyed.
"Another step up. What kind of sense is this? We don't need a new step."

He'll get over it by dinnertime.


  1. ha on their reactions...i feel sorry for brownie...glad you were accomodating to him...

  2. I remember reading about Brownie's traumatic horn injury and that is so good you are pampering him. Your husband IS a carpenter. The goat stories here are charming.

  3. This post shows your love and concern for your animals. Your
    husband may not be a carpenter but
    he sure does a good job whatever he is working on. Have a blessed evening and a great Halloween weekend. Madeline

  4. It makes me sad that Brownie is the odd man out. Do goats get lonely if they are the odd man out? I wonder.
    i think your doing pretty well I'd a probably built him his own barn and heated it. I'm the sucker who bottle fed a teen age squirrel.

  5. ps I wonder about these men we have. If you decide he is a very good carpenter does he have a longer honey do list? My hunny hid the fact that he painted well for 15 years. The cat's out of the bag now. I think the job looks pretty professional.

  6. I remember Brownies ordeal and how heartbreaking it was just reading about it. How could you not have a soft spot for him now? I am beginning to become quite enamored with goats..they really have some secrets to tell.

  7. That was delightful. Your words really brought the story to the photos. I think it's wonderful that you consider the comforts of each of your goats. Brownie couldn't have a better home after his horny ordeal. I look forward to seeing the finished 'thing'. (And lucky you to have such a talented husband.)

  8. I like the way you and your husband keep yourselves busy. Always a new project, new activity, new observation, and then there are the pictures! That, and your empathy, your kindness, and your chatty style is what keeps your blog so interesting.

  9. Priceless. I was laughing and then ready to cry about Brownie.

    Your love is wonderful and so was this post!

  10. Too bad you couldn't just ship Brownie up here, you see our oldest goat has had a stroke and is not long for this world. This leaves us with our latest girl Katie, whom we got as company for Tramp. Now what will we do with her? Good progress on the over hang. Tom's still working on ours between his full time job. If I was a goat I would want to live with you guys...spoilers!

  11. I feel sorry for Brownie also. WE do love our goats don't we! After losing 3 to a cougar, as you know, we've built a night sleeping barn and cage for security for the rest. I try not to think about how much $$$ we've invested in them. As you said, it's a labor of love...

  12. Since I have never "known" any goats in my life it always amazes me how intelligient your goats are. I love the first picture where they are all pondering the new addition to the yard.


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