Long before we ever got a hold of a cow or the means for keeping one we toyed with the idea of getting a milk goat. My mother grabbed hold of the idea and soon every level piece of furniture was stacked milk goat literature. We kids were also excited about the idea, but that might have been before we got chickens, which we learned need plenty of maintenance.
We never did get the milk goat but many years later we somehow found two billy goats on our hands. The cool thing about goats is they eat anything, and it doesn’t matter what you feed them. You could put them in a patch of thistles and soon they would have them mowed to nubbins. One of the problems with goats is that they eat everything, it doesn’t matter what you have fed them they will continue to chew to the last breath. We wanted to let them run loose on our vast acreage and let them do their magic on all the weeds and abundant thistles and tall, coarse grass. But unfortunately their magic entailed wandering into the flower beds, herb gardens and potato patch. Once all the tender shoots were devoured they decided to become garbage disposals and raided the garbage. I didn’t mind them actually eating it but they didn’t care for keeping their bearded chins over their plate. The solution was to stake them out where we wanted them to mow and they would do a pretty good job. It looked like crop circles. This worked fine except that we had to move them every hour or so and check on them to make sure they hadn’t strangled themselves on their ropes. Sometimes they got so wrapped around their post or a branch that they couldn’t move an inch. I’d trust my life on some of the knots those goats configured. And every so often a goat would either chew their tether in half or pull loose somehow. Luckily we were soon alerted of this by the panicky braes of the other poor goat who found himself alone. It’s funny how the one that’s free doesn’t mind being alone. Once they are free it is every goat for himself. Same with horses.