I felt in the mood to post something a little light hearted. The following is a re-post from 2008 from my personal blog, and is a favorite among my readers. It is also a wonderful gist on how one goes about shearing a goat for the very first time. Enjoy.
She is an Angora goat, and our host for today. You will need a goat for today’s experiment. You will also need to wonder through your local farm store purchasing items such as bleed stop, sprayable iodine and bandages. Try not to look frighten as you give these items to the cashier, she/he might think you are up to something. And a nervous giggle is something you should avoid as well boys and girls. Cashier’s are able to give you the evil eye without lifting their heads, it’s spooky.
Now that you have your wound care, and your goat, you need a pair of shears. For educational purposes only, we have gone the route of manual shears.
Purchasing a goat wrangler comes in handy as well. Look around, it is worth it to find one to your specific likings.
The floor of your barn should be clean, no mud of straw to get into the wool. But for this experiment, we will forgo the sterile room.
Many people and books tell you the once they are on their backs, they are passive. This is not true. Goats will spit and buck while on their backs. Just a gentle holding down of the horns to keep their heads from moving seems to be much better then some of the other techniques I have read and seen.
Starting on the front right shoulder, you cut as close as is comfortable for you. The book I have said to flip the animals back and forth, going from right to left and back again. This however, boys and girls, doesn’t seem to work for these goats, for as soon as you attempt to roll them, they attempt to get up on their feet and run away.
Just curious. But, does this goat make my butt look big?
Sometimes your Angora wrangler is done for the day, even if the job isn’t. It then falls on you to do the rest of the shearing. Not to worry boys and girls. The goat isn’t being sat on, merely straddled into compliance. (I wonder what kind of google hits I will get from that statement)
When your goat is down, now is the time to trim hooves and look for any problems. This goat shows signs of neglect from previous owners. We are in the process of fixing that.
This goat is also pregnant, that or she has an alien about ready to burst from her stomach.
I know, I know, this was horrible. We did a bad job with the shearing, but it is our first time. We will hopefully get better as time goes on.
NO goats were hurt in the making of this post. just our pride.
An update about this goat. We indeed fattened her up and her pregnancy was going wonderfully. Unfortunately she was killed in a wild dog attack along with several other goats and geese. Now that’s a lesson to share with you all another day.