It was a fairly quiet week here at the sanctuary, with the exception of a check up for Renata. A few years ago Renata was taken in by a wonderful rescue and they soon realized she had a terrible infection in one of her toes and eventually had it amputated. Fast forward to now and we noticed Renata had been walking a bit stiffly as of late. She tends to put her weight on her foot awkwardly, causing her hoof to grow at a different angle and stressing her joints. We felt she needed a vet to assess her hoof again and her remaining toe. Renata is one of our older goats, though not the oldest by any means, but we want to support her as much as we can as she heads into her older years which can mean stiffer joints for some goats. Unfortunately he said there’s not much we can do as far as correcting her walk since goats aren’t totally designed to lose a toe and remain correct in their gait. So we’ll just keep on top of her hoof trimming on that hoof so she doesn’t redistribute her weight anymore than she needs to, and maybe look at starting joint supplements. Molly’s Herbals and Fir Meadow both make great all natural joint supplements.
Speaking of all natural supplements, maybe you’ve heard that garlic oil is good for ear aches in humans, but did you know that garlic is useful for for goats and other livestock too? It has antimicrobial, anti-parasitic, and antioxidant qualities, making it a great superfood! This is a great article on other herbal supplements for goat herds: https://traditionalcookingschool.com/raising-food/how-i-use-herbs-to-maintain-a-healthy-goat-herd/
We use an herbal mix in our nesting boxes for our chickens too. Makes the coop smell good as a bonus!
I spent good chunk of this week organizing our animal records. I have big binders full of info, but I felt I needed to consolidate and organize some things. The state of Oregon has specific requirements rescues and sanctuaries need to meet in order to to get a license to operate, and this includes certain record keeping requirements. So going through all our records was a good chance for me to make sure we have everything we need on hand when our inspection date arrives for our license. One of the requirements is to have the birth dates recorded for each animal in our care. That’s easy to do for most of our animals, but we do have a few that have unknown birthdates, like the recent rescue hens we took in. Hopefully the state will understand. 😊 And on the topic of birthdates, want to guess which animal at the sanctuary is our oldest, at a whopping 21 years old?
The average lifespan of a llama is actually 15 years (20 if they are in the wild), so Skeeter is defying the odds. She still moves like a younger llama, so we’re hoping she’s got a lot of years ahead of her. Opal, our other guard llama, is 15 and she is seeming more arthritic lately, so she’s receiving joint supplements. We hoping she has a lot of years ahead of her too though!
Our next oldest animal is Sunny, the goat that thinks she’s an alpaca. Sunny clocks in at 12 years old. Since she sees herself as an alpaca, we’re hoping she follows in Skeeter’s footsteps and makes it to two decades.
In homeschooling this week, one of my kiddos took a class on organ donation and watched a real life kidney transplant video. She didn’t squirm at all, so kudos to her! She wants to be a vet when she grows up, so getting used to blood, etc. is a good thing.
That’s a wrap for this week, and we’ll leave you with this goat joke gem:
As two hungry goats tried eating movie film reel, one turned to the other.
It said, “I don’t know about you, but I thought the book was better.”