Responsible Goat Ownership?!
As a goat owner and breeder I always think to myself about what I can do to take the best care of my goats and their kids as possible. One of the most important things that I can think of is finding appropriate, caring, and loving homes for the kids that I am not able to keep. This can be very stressful, as I try to determine which kids I want to keep, which ones make sense to keep from a breeding perspective and what kids I have reservations already for. I for one always stress about letting my kids go, and I was very lucky to have someone last year buy my one doe kid that I sold that was an experienced goat owner and I can follow her on their YouTube channel; Life on Beagle Road! I talk to Courtney and see updates about Scarlet's progress all of the time. This let me know that she was going to a home where I knew she would be loved, well cared for and I would be able to see her frequently!
This lead me to think critically about my goat sales and how I could try to provide them with the best quality owners moving forward
. This year in my second breeding season, I have drafted a contract for all prospective goat owners outlining their health, well- being and my offer to take them back if the time came that they could no longer care for the goats as long as they could prove their disease status was negative. I also think this helps for people to ensure that they are committed to providing a loving home for our goats, because we are willing to be their mentors at all hours of the night. We try to also screen our perspective goat owners, ensuring they understand basic goat herd health, hoof maintenance, feeding and care. One thing that was said to me recently is that we are the goats advocates, if something doesn't feel right and you do not believe that the interested party understands what they are getting into when it comes to goats or that they cannot properly care for the animals you have for sale not only do you have the right, but as a responsible breeder you have the responsibility to deny sale of that animal. This may not make you popular with the prospective buyer, but it is the correct and ethical thing to do for your animals. How do other breeders manage their sales and follow up to ensure their goats are being well cared for? Or is this something that you don't worry about? Let me know your thoughts below!