By Nancy Addie
Have I mentioned lately how much fun the farm is? You know, raking out manure, carrying 50-pound sacks of tasty goat grain or chicken scratch, or fighting off large animals who circle you like hungry sharks every time you open the grain bin can be invigorating, right?! Then, there is the truly fun things experienced everyday with my goofy animals.
For starters, there is mountain goat Sierra who starts and finishes every single day by staring at the house. No matter what time I get up in the morning, she is out by the gate, glaring straight up at my bedroom window. She doesn’t move a muscle. She focuses, willing me to come out to feed her and only her, NOW! She ends her day with her catatonic stare for about 30 minutes before bed time. I don’t think she even blinks when she gets into the zone!
Then there’s Dillon, my other adorable little pygmy goat. He loves his people! He usually runs out to greet me demanding a pat, or better yet, a hug. He will follow me into the barn, sometimes making me trip over him. How can I get mad at a goat who adores me? It’s easy not to, especially when I’m picking myself off the ground as he sticks his face into mine!
And Mr. Favorite, Dunkay, the donkey who thinks he’s a dog. He “hee-haws” at the sight of a human he thinks may be on the way to feed him. He will almost always back his butt up to me, not moving until I give him a good scratch. He loves to play with balls, boxes, empty plastic tubs, the 4-foot-tall Santa or Frosty the Snowman Christmas decorations, the bird bath, our grandson’s toys or the chickens. He pushes the chickens with his nose, grabs ahold of those items and throws them high up into the air. He will follow me or Super Farmer around in the pastures. Dunkay will stick his nose into every job we do whether it’s finding eggs, pounding in fence post or cleaning out the garage. He has mastered almost every gate. We are now tying our gates closed with rope, I’m sure he is studying the knots so he can untie them!
Our mini horse, Laci the mini-tank, is named so as she’s a bit plump and stubby. She loves to chew on plastic bags while nudging me with her nose. She can squeeze that round little body between gates and posts, under the fence or holes she has worked on to make big enough for an escape. Like an NFL fullback she pushes and shoves until she makes a green grass gain.
Laci making a funny face.
My boy llama Sammie is laid back. He allows Super Farmer to scratch his behind and stroke his long neck. He pretty much stays out of trouble. His side kick, Lincoln the Alpaca, is in a world that only he can visit at times. He does his warning cry toward anything that moves such as birds, a floating leaf, cats, cars, lawn mowers, people, dogs walking by, a swaying branch. If it moves, he llama screams at it!
Our two girl llamas, Sweetie and Violet, stick together like two peas in a pod. They eat and sleep together, stroll through the pasture, peek inside our windows and fight like sisters inevitably will on occasion. Typical women displaying a love-hate relationship!
Two months ago, an unexpected baby llama joined our family farm. We named him Promise because he is a promise from our Father in heaven that things are going to get better. He is our delight! Promise jumps and runs around like a normal child. He is curious about everything he lays his little brown eyes on. He is friendly and has learned to trust us. He makes us smile and is a true blessing.
My animals make me laugh whether it is putting on a hay wig as Sammie did this week, making funny faces, kissing me, or just putting on a ‘here they go again show.’ I can’t count how many times I have felt like giving up on life, but once I get inside the barn and feel annoyed, I get happy, letting the peace of God settle over me as I watch His gifts fight, play and nudge me with their soft, velvet muzzles.
Well-Suited Welsh Cobs
Descended from the wild ponies of Wales, these do-it-all Welsh Cob horses can work the farm and traverse the trails with equal ease.
Working with Mules
You’ll want to find a place on the homestead for a hardy and efficient mule.
Should You Teach Your Horse How to Drive?
Teach your horse to drive with these tips. There are several benefits to teaching your horse to pull a cart, it is also a great way to have fun!