Life with Greta was amazing that first week! I came in every morning, gave her some bulk feed, brushed her a little, then took her outside on a leash to let her graze. Then at night I took her back to the barn, gave her another cup of feed, and locked her up for the night. Ahhhh! Oh, it was the life. However, it was more than obvious that Greta was lonely. Like I mentioned in my previous post, goats are herd animals which means they don’t like to be alone. When I would let Greta out to graze she would cry and cry until I came back. She wouldn’t eat AND she tried to climb the fence.
She did not, however, do this with my dad or Justin. So several days they had to let her out and I had to sneak in and out of the house without her seeing me! Thus began the search for a friend. Dad called a guy, who called a guy, who gave a number to a guy, who dad called that told him to go to the goat auction about 20 minutes away. (Due to our experience there I will leave the city and name out.) Oh boy, my first livestock auction!
Thursday morning, December 6th, I rode up there by myself. Dad had a dentist appt and was going to meet me before the auction started. I pulled in, called mom because I had NO idea what building to go in, walked to the front desk, and proceeded to tell them that I needed to know what to do to be able to bid. They were VERY nice, I think they thought I was a bit ditzy (huge pet peeve of mine), they told me to fill out my name, address, how I would be paying and they needed a copy of my drivers license. I then went out back to see if they had any la mancha’s (a dairy breed). I saw they only had one, he was a buck, I then went back inside and waited for dad.
The auction as a whole was pretty straight forward. They brought out an animal, beginning with the goats, and you raised your hand to bid. 3/4 of the way through the auction a gorgeous pregnant alpine (dairy breed) came out. When the bid got to $200 we stopped bidding (not knowing that was a steal!). Next, her “kid” came out, she was a doeling (1-2 yrs, we know she was 2) and she is pregnant, due in Feb. same as Greta. We begin bidding on her and win. Yay! She was a beautiful red. As we are leaving dad sees the guy we bought Greta from. After talking he tells dad he goes right by our house and he’ll bring her by so we don’t have to haul her in the back of his little truck. Right before we leave dad and I see the man who brought the alpines. After talking for a good 20-30 mins we learn he is an Ag teacher from north Alabama, he has 2 more alpines he was willing to sell us, his father (who was with him) owns a paint horse farm, so we exchange information and we head home.
Here comes the fun… When we get home this is the goat waiting for us:
Notice anything? One. She is not red. Two. She is not alpine. Three. She is boer. (Meat goat) Four. She has HORNS!
Oh. My. Goodness. Talk about upset. And to top it all off she is bucking and jerking me around like I’m a play toy. And did I mention she has HORNS?! Dad gets her tied to a post long enough to go call the auction house and …. She starts standing on her hind legs kicking the air! I thought I was going to die. DIE. The guy who dropped her off said that’s the goat that matched our number and that he was sorry (not his fault at all) before he left he lifted her tail and said she had miscarried. That was the last straw. I was pretty much in tears. This was a total disaster. She has HORNS!
Well after several back and forth calls to the auction house they apologized profusely (at first) but the man who took my alpine was already gone. Dad eventually found out he had sold her within the first 30 mins of buying her. Given he paid a LOT less for a high dollar goat it doesn’t surprise me. When the auction house figured out there was nothing the could do they told dad he didn’t know what he was doing and bid on the wrong goat. WRONG thing to say to a former cattle farmer who use to buy 100 head of cattle at a time at these auctions. We are 98% sure the “tags” (stickers with numbers on them) got switched and we got cheated out of a great goat. Who knew goat fraud existed?! And to make matters worse my phone deleted the note with the alpine sellers name and number and we’ve called EVERYONE in north Alabama and no one knows this guy.
Whew, so what do you name a pain-in-the-booty goat with HORNS? Gertrude of course. So that is how Gertrude’s story with us began. Not too good, and while Gertrude is still a grump, this tale does not end badly…but that will be my next post!