I live on a farm. Have I mentioned that? Well, I live on a farm. A small farm, what’s referred to around here as a farmette which means not enough land to be a real farm with tractors and cornfields but too much to be called a big yard.
I have specialty cows. Short, black, pastoral looking cows. I make jokes that they’re Italian cows: full sized bodies, short, stubby legs. My Italian husband finds this mildly humorous.
I have chickens, weird looking ducks and loud obnoxious geese. I love them. They make all manner of strange noises and crowd around my feet looking for food which makes me feel like a bizarre Dr. Dolittle.
However, today’s topic is goats. More specifically, rutting buck goats. Deer hunters will have a pretty good idea where I’m going with this. They rest of you just have to wait in suspense.
My buckling, as I call him, is a sweet guy. He’s a Kiko, all white, big horns that will only get bigger and become a hassle but I can’t see having his skull cap cut into to remove them. Ick. And may I say again? Ick.
The problem is Buckling has gone into rut. What’s rut, you ask. Rut means he’s a horny bastard and is doing all the charming things that horny male goats do and it’s not a pretty picture.
Don’t get me wrong. I love goats. They’re funny and sweet and playful. They get all happy whenever I go to see them, even if I don’t have food (unlike aforementioned birds). But, man, rutting bucks are gross.
The rubbing up against the does in a romantic fashion is cute and sweet. The pulling his lips back from over his teeth isn't terribly flattering to his appearance but I can let that slide. However, the recurring pissing on his face is neither cute nor sweet. Yes, that’s right…face pissing. Who’d have thunk it?
Apparently, buck pee is an aphrodisiac for does. I’m glad I’m not a doe. Very glad. Early on during his rut, Buckling seems to have decided that I will make a nice new addition to his harem of girlfriends. Now, as I mentioned, I love goats but I don’t LOVE goats, if you catch my meaning.
It happened like this: I decided to sit in the pasture communing with the critters and trying to desensitize the calves to my presence so they would let me move them around with the ultimate goal of piercing their ears with huge orange tags. They didn’t know that though. That's a good thing as they frown on that particular procedure.
Buckling approached looking as though he wanted some neck rubs so I obliged. However, instead of moving on to eat grass or belch up nitrogen gas, he continued to rub his head on my back and shoulders. Hmmm…what’s that about, I asked myself. Then it occurred to me. Ut Oh, Buckling finds me attractive; in a romantic sort of way. Not good since he weighs more than I can easily handle and, did I mention, has really big horns? While I kept pushing him away – pushing on his side, not his horns as I didn’t want him to decide I was challenging him – he kept coming back for more head rubbing on my extremities. Still not good so I left the pasture. Never let your head be below that of a rutting buck. Apparently, that’s a bit of an invitation and not one I’d like to offer. Luckily I don't have a tail to flag or I'd have been in serious trouble.
After conferring with my online goat list I was given a couple of suggestions. Spray him in the face with ammonia water or whack him with something. Goat whacking, you’re thinking. How awful. How abusive. How un-PETA like. Those are the thoughts that come from people who have never had a horny, 150 lb buck sidling up to them for a little afternoon delight.
To add to my dismay, I made a trip to the post office to mail whatever. Some guy walked in and I smelled a skunk type smell so I after he left, I asked the post office lady if she smelled skunk. She said, “I smell something but I’m not sure what it is”. I offered that the dog and I had been precariously close to a skunk the night before and I wondered if perhaps it had sprayed us after all. She assured me that I didn’t stink. Whew. Until…until I strolled over to the trash can to throw some superfluous paper thing away at which time she said, ”Oh, yeah, it’s you”. Now there’s a way to make friends..go out in public smelling like a skunk.
On the way back home, I was pondering the skunk experience and wondering how it could have sprayed me without spraying the dog who certainly didn’t smell like anything other than dog when it suddenly came to me. BUCKLING! Buck piss! Yummy…now I smell like buck piss. Ugh.
To make a long embarrassing story slightly longer, when a buck wants you to be his girlfriend, wash your coat right away. And when he tries to woo you further, a cut off 2x4 across his brow ridge is an excellent way to change his mind. Don’t try this at home folks…..