Hey everyone!! Who here likes goats?
I recently have become a BIG goat fan. Like so big that when I come home from work, I can usually be found laying on my bed watching videos of the goats from the Sanctuary that I work at. They are just so FUN. And spunky! And have SO much personality. The free-range goats at the Sanctuary all travel in a herd, and get into the cutest trouble. They’re always sneaking into pastures that they’re not supposed to, and chowing down on plants that they should be leaving alone.
So it was only a matter of time before I told you guys the breaking news… I literally have fallen in love with a goat. His name is Bartleby and he is a riot. When I met him on my first day at the Sanctuary, I was told that he is always getting into trouble, and loves to headbutt little kids. Every day since, I have found this to be absolutely true.
Now if there is one thing I can really sympathize with, it is a misunderstood animal. The look in this goat’s eyes is just TOO deep for me to explain. I know he’s got so much going on in that mind of his, and I love that he has a bit of a mischievous streak.
But that’s the thing about him, he doesn’t look particularly mean or menacing, he just looks like a cute messy haired goat with a stocky body who enjoys (slow!) walks around the Sanctuary. ❤
The thing that (unnecessarily) breaks my heart is that he is such a loner. While all the other free-rangers will be in a pasture together, he’ll be alone eating in a separate area. I’ve been told that he likes to be alone, and you can tell because even when he is in a group, he always breaks off to do his own thing.
I, being someone who loves alone time, should understand him, but I think I’ve portrayed this persona on him so much that I now feel so bad whenever he’s alone! I shouldn’t because he’s probably having the time of his life, but I do love to keep him company ❤ So, to make myself feel better, I make sure to spend some time with him everyday, and give him a face massage. (He loves to rub his face all over your hands when you put them on his cheeks, it’s SO DARN CUTE.)
And when I say that he loves to have his cheeks rubbed, I mean that he LOVES to have his cheeks rubbed.
So my love for Bartleby really got me thinking, and I (stupidly) realized that people exploit goats for their bodies and that they are included in the species that us humans eat. I forgot that goat’s milk and cheese are super trendy right now, and realized that I knew literally nothing about goats in regards to animal agriculture.
ALSO – people eat goats. Who knew! I am someone who doesn’t get appalled when discussing eating dogs or other companion animals because, to me, all animals are equal. I am equally as disgusted when someone eats a chicken as when the dog meat festival occurs, eating a chicken is just waaaay more socially acceptable. So eating any type of animal literally baffles me, and eating goats is no exception! They are such lovely animals. Really, they’re full of fun and personality and they are so obviously amazing companions that I don’t know why anyone would eat them.
Anyway, I decided to do a little research about goats in the animal agriculture industry. Like dairy farming, in the goat farming industry, baby goats (kids) are removed from their mother usually within 24-48 hours and sold off/ “discarded of.” The girl kids are usually used for dairy production, and the boy kids are deemed useless for the dairy industry and sold off to slaughter.
When my dad visited the Sanctuary recently, he asked if we ever milk the goats. I completely understand why he asked, because I too used to think that all animals need to be milked, whether they recently have given birth or not. But this is not the case! I told him that an animal will only produce milk if they’ve recently had babies, and sadly, in the animal agriculture industry, they almost never get to keep their babies and are milked far beyond the amount of time that babies would be feeding off of them.
Plus, in order to get animals pregnant, they almost always are artificially inseminated, which is done using something called a rape rack. I kid you not, I did not make up this term! Aka, “artificial insemination” is a polite way of saying they are forcefully impregnated against their will.
A good way to remember this is to think of us humans. Women only produce breast milk after they’ve had a baby, and animals are the same way! When I was a vegetarian (which was for 8 years of my life) I genuinely thought that cows always produce milk, and that it was fine for me to drink their milk because they “had to be milked.” I am a PERFECT example of someone who should have done her research looooong ago. Maybe now I’m a little too heavy on the “I gotta learn my stuff and research as much as possible!” but a girl’s gotta stay informed!
There are a million and a half other disgusting things wrong with exploiting goats for food production, but you can look all that up on your own. I want to keep this post light and positive because it’s about GOATS for crying out loud!
So back to the happy stuff tho, more on Mr. Bartleby!
He’s such a wide guy because he can always be found eating. Come to think of it, it seems like all goats can always be found eating, but this guy especially.
He is also always doing the strangest things. I see him in this position many, many times a day:
Such a little crazypants!
Like me, everyone who meets him falls in love with him. There’s something about him that is just so sweet, hilarious, and enchanting. If ANY of you live near upstate NY, I really recommend visiting the Sanctuary, and you can see sweet little Bartleby free-ranging around!
If you at all think that Bartleby is a little character in his own, I hope y’all recognize that he is a character and he does have a personality, and that we should leave goats and goat byproducts off of our plates.
And while you’re at it, if you feel sympathy towards goats, research veganism because if your heart is so big that you feel compassion towards goats, there is no telling how much room you have in your heart for other species as well! ❤ I feel that all of us as humans have the capacity to love animals so much that we shouldn’t eat them, so spread the love and educate others on why animals are here on this earth with us, not for us. ❤