Growing Home Again

Smart Bumps

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Like all people, I made plenty of mistakes growing up. That’s how we learn. My mom taught me that these were just bumps in the road. After I hit one, I could either learn from them and it would become a “smart bump” or not learn from it and repeat it again – a “dumb bump”. I’m sure I have had a few more “dumb bumps” than “smart bumps”.  As a city girl turned farm girl, I’ve hit plenty of bumps and endeavored to make them “smart bumps”. That’s why I started this blog – so others can learn from my failures and not make the same mistakes.

bump in the road 2

Even “smart bumps” can be quite painful. I picked up my first buckling back in January. I asked all the right questions, checked the right paperwork. Had a vet check. He looked like the perfect little Alpine/Nubian herd sire for my herd. He was too little to be checked for some of the nastier stuff in life – like Caprine Arthritis and Encephalitis (CAE). He just turned seven months old and has been in with my herd.

I did my due diligence and had my herd tested (yearly). Guess who has CAE – my buck and (former) herd sire. CAE is mostly spread mostly through milk and blood. Saliva, urine, mucus, and feces are also transmission conduit. Most kids contract CAE from their mother’s milk. There’s no cure and no treatment. Infected goats are doomed to a life of separation or with other infected goats. Knowingly breeding an infected doe is, in my opinion, unethical.  On this homestead, everybody has a purpose. My buck’s new purpose will be to feed our family.

Did I do anything wrong? Not really. I asked all the right questions, looked at the right paperwork and frankly, somebody lied to me. So now my buck is on his way to freezer camp tomorrow morning.

One of my older does also became CAE positive – just a little. She’s in quarantine pending testing at 30 days. Hopefully, her numbers will change.

Be smart, do your homework. Ask the tough question and understand that sometimes – people mislead and provide false information.

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