It has been a busy summer. I am totally thrilled with my Oberhasli, Arra! She claimed Reserve Champion at the County Fair and most people were surprised she didn't take Grand Champion. I understood the judge's reasoning in giving it to an older La Mancha Doe. No teeth grinding here! Dd has decided to "start over" with La Manchas. She has been very unhappy with Ellie-mae. Nubians need the right kind of person and apparently dd is not the right type. Ds is still completely in love with his Nubian.
It's now breeding season and believe it or not a lot of thought and planning goes in to this. Arra will be taken back to where she came from to be bred to a buck there. Coraline will probably be bred to a nice buck from someone in our 4-H group. Ellie-mae is still up in the air.
With the breeding season comes the task of testing and the blood draws that go with it. Those were accomplished yesterday with the generous help of Hazel, Wendy, and Jorge. Hazel has dreams of becoming a vet and watching her yesterday I can see it as a wise choice for her life. Many people with goats don't think testing is important. I am NOT in that camp. There are a few nasty goat diseases that I don't want in my herd. There are also a few that are transmissable to humans and I am DEFINITELY NOT taking my chances with those. Drawing blood from a goat is often done from the jugular vein and it's no simple task. Arra was the most patient and I'm attributing it to the fact that she's had it done a few times before. Coraline didn't like it and Ellie-mae really didn't like it. But it's done and the tubes are going out today. I have no worries about Arra but the other two are a bit up in the air. The seller said they were tested but I was not shown any results from the lab. It will be good to know for myself. If their results are not favorable they will not be bred.
This whole goat journey has been so much fun! It's had it's bumps such as the Nubians not liking the Oberhasli and then having to separate the Oberhasli in a different pen. It's amazing what a fence will do for "herd relations"! My dh has helped in so many ways and I'm thankful. While I was out of town in August I came home to the surprise of a small barn. It was greatly needed. This weekend he put together a better shelter for Arra. There is now talk of refurbishing Coraline and Ellie-mae's shelter. Just in time for cold weather!