Tuesday, November 3, 2009

For the Milk

As anyone who spends time around me knows, I love talking about my animals. It's great to share my experiences with other urban-dwellers. Even if they're not at all interested in keeping animals themselves, it helps to redefine what's possible in a city backyard.

It's also fun because it helps to shed a little light on food and biology, and how they're intertwined. People ask about my plans for my goats and whether I'm milking them. I always explain that they're just now getting old enough to breed, so once they've had their babies then I can milk them for a time. And then - for almost everyone I talk to - there's a moment of realization. "Oh, I didn't realize you had to breed them in order to get milk!" Most of us city folk (myself included) grew up thinking that cows and goats were just automatically milk-able. Nope, they're mammals, and they have to follow the same biological rules that humans do.

So, today's a big day for our little farm, because I'm taking Dasha up to the breeder's to - hopefully! - get knocked up. We're breeding her to a (again, hopefully) nice, registered goat named Pirate.

Isn't he a handsome devil? We're happy that we're able to breed her to a blue-eyed buck. I really couldn't care less about the eye color of my goats. However, it's really important to me that I'm able to sell the babies, and a reality of the goat world is that the blue-eyed trait is less common, and therefore sought after.