In preparation for Henry's birthday party walk to the local farm, he and I trekked to the feed store (Callahan's for all of you Austin folks) to purchase some goat feed to pass out as favors.
Going to feed stores is seriously a hobby of mine. I loved exploring Wabash when we lived in Houston, and now that I have a child, trips to the feed store are elevated to a whole new level.
As soon as Henry and I walked in, we immediately spotted piglets. I seriously can't think of anything cuter than baby pigs with their mother.
And next to them were two pygmy goats--also as cute as could be. Then we spotted some six-week old bunnies--definitely cute.
While I was petting the goats, I struck up a conversation with the man next to me. I had wanted goats for a long time but then got convinced that they would be too difficult to keep as pets. My conversation with the man next to me, however, reignited my interested in keeping two pygmy goats as pets.
He explained that he kept his goats in the backyard just like dogs. When he would arrive home after work in the evening, they would run up to greet him. At night, he would just keep them in the backyard. They got along famously with his dog. He said the one thing you have to be careful of is keeping them away from your vehicles because they do love to climb.
I was flooded with joy by the prospect of letting two pygmy goats (they like company) run free in the backyard with Hoss and the chickens. We love, love, love having chickens as pets in the backyard (they have so much personality!), and I'm guessing I will feel the same way about miniature goats. I also love the idea of Henry growing up around farm animals. He'll learn so much about responsibility, gentleness, compassion, and joy.
I'm going back to this book as well as the internet to do some more research!
Our current vision is to build a fence all the way around our backyard and down into the creek area. It will be about a 1/2 acre, minus the 25-foot set-back of the house from the street and the house itself. The garden will be in the front yard, away from all the animals (if the positioning of the house doesn't block the sun too much). Now that we're thinking about goats in the backyard, we'll also have to keep the mini-orchard out of the fenced area. It will be on the side of the house.
We'll also have to think about how the pygmy goats will interact with the plants and trees in our backyard. They might just demolish everything!
Like I said, there's still a lot of research to be done, but I'm excited to dwell in possibility!