Monday, October 19, 2009

Guthrie / Daisy + Poultry = Headache

We also have another unsettling development here on the farm. The past two evenings when I have been checking the animals to make sure everybody was ready to bed down for the night Guthrie has acted strange. Yesterday he wouldn't come up from the wooded area of the pen when I came in (usually he is the first, always on my heels or between my legs...). So I went down to check on him. He had a 4" gash on one ear that was bleeding, and he looked as if one of the dogs had been "playing" with him. He had the matted slobbery hair indicative of a play session with the dogs. He was very shaken up and didn't want to walk so I carried him to the pen I can close to isolate a few if need be. I put him and Buttercup in there for the night, since she is the most passive of the goats.

Today I noticed he was off in the wooded area again and same thing... Not another wound, but obviously molested. So I closed him off with Geraldine for the night.

The best I can figure from observation (since I haven't witnessed any roughing of the goats lately) is that Daisy goaded Chesney into helping her play with Guthrie. She has a tendency to rile up the older dog and the shepherd in her makes her nip sometimes. I don't know if she bit his ear or it got hung on fencing or briers or what, but obviously he had been chewed on and when I carried him she kept trying to nip him while he was in my arms.

This is definitely not something we need. This on top of the fact that she seems to have an obvious dislike for the poultry does not bode well for her. I think she would be okay with grown goats, it is just the small/medium sized ones that she can play rough with that get injured. I may have to find her a new home... Haven't fully decided yet. She is a great, loving dog, and she even gets along with the cat well.

Alright, back to the birds. We have a temporary coop rigged up, but it isn't going to work for long. I have to build some nest boxes, a roost, and figure out how to let them get outside without getting away or getting eaten... So far the two roosters haven't been fighting, and yes I know I don't need two. It was just the way the lots were divided, and I didn't want to bid on any chickens until I knew whether or not I was going to win the guineas so I had to wait until they came around to ones after them. Also I was reading up a second ago, and I might actually have Ameraucanas instead of Araucanas. I'll post a picture and you experts can help me identify them. They are not rumpless I don't believe...

I'm reading an interesting book right now called Dies the Fire. It is a post-apocalyptic novel that is officially sci-fi but isn't really... There was a big, world-wide electro magnetic pulse type storm that knocked out all electronics AND made gun powder and explosives not work anymore. The second part of that is the sci-fi I guess. So far it seems like people who perform in renaissance fairs would rule the world if that happened (according to the book, haha). I am about 1/3 of the way through it and it is pretty good so far.

Finn's 2nd birthday is coming up soon (November 8th) and it is Elmo themed! Everyone break out your finest red fur!

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Yours Truly,
The Crowsons