Thursday, January 2, 2014

She's stuck. Oh, rats!

Paul had yesterday off from work so we all spent most of the day outside enjoying the 50 degree weather.  Lots of poop was scooped and tossed into the compost heap, fresh bedding was put into the goat huts, storage areas were cleaned out and the RIR pullets (and two RIR roosters) were again scooted out of the kidding pen.  Oh.  And Penny got stuck underneath the barn.

The night before, I noticed Penny's head sticking out from under the barn when I tucked everyone in for the night, but just figured she was hanging out there or trying to avoid getting picked on.  Then in the morning she was in the same spot.  I tried coaxing her out (i.e. poked her butt with a shovel) but try as she might, she couldn't wiggle out from under there.  So I ended up having to move the steps in order to give her more room.  Paul took her by the collar and I poked her butt; she shimmied and Paul pulled and she made it out.  A little bit stiff in the legs and a little bit poopy in the behind, but no worse for the wear.  What IS it with these stupid goats?  First Pickles and now Penny.  Is it a Boer thing or is it I just happen to get the dumbest goats in the Ozarks?

I then started tackling other goat-keeping chores.  The little enclosure that the protein tub, minerals, salt and baking soda is in was cleaned and I noticed that they were out of baking soda.  I opened the seldom used storage area located in the back half of the barn to get the soda and when I opened the doors I saw a bunch of orange peels, egg shells and a lot of hay.  At first I though that the mice had taken over again, but there was sooooo much stuff packed in there I figured something larger had holed up in there.  And when I moved one of the folded up dog crates, there he was, staring at me; a big ol' pack rat.  I immediately put the crate back and looked around for something to kill it with.  The scoop shovel was too big.  A rock wasn't going to work.  Didn't have a sidearm on my hip.  Then I spied one of the metal rods that are used to hook the dog crate together.  Heck, why not.  And I actually managed to shish-kabob his rodent butt.  After tossing the carcass out of the barn, I went ahead and pulled everything out of the area and found a ton of stuff jammed in behind the buckets and crates.  Enough grain to fill a 5-gallon bucket.  A big ol' feather lined nest - thankfully with no rodent offspring.  Shredded blue tarp.  Wad of feed sack string.  Additional piles of other indistinguishable organic materials.  And a chewed up photograph of what looked like the JFK autopsy.
New Year's Day Fun.......
Poking a dead rat with a stick!
While we were cleaning out the barn, Outside Kitty was also doing a little cleaning of his own.  Rhiannon had opened the door to the feed room and Outside Kitty ran in.  Rhiannon eventually came back out, but he stayed in there.  After a while I heard a lot of scratching around and peeked in there to see him playing with an almost-dead mouse.  What a good kitty!  Paul said that he should have been after the pack rat, but I don't blame him for going after less threatening quarry.  That pack rat was almost as big as my boot!


  1. I don't have it in me to kill mice or rats. I'm afraid they will run up my leg and chew on my face or something! Your brave!!!!
    Our weather yesterday was gorgeous followed by frigid temps and snow. Oklahoma weather is wonky!
    Happy New Year to you and your family!!!!

  2. Sounds like you need to board up or wire up where goats are getting under the barn. For some reason goats seem to get into more situations than sheep but not always.

  3. Ew, is all I can say.... I HATE rats! On swam up into my toilet years ago. That's a disgusting tale. Suffice to say I killed it with lye :(

  4. Carolyn,

    Oh what fun!!! The pack rat was trying to stay warm and he/she thought omg......I've found my castle here.......................NOT!!!! Carolyn turned into Super Exterminator Woman, that damn rat didn't know what hit him, lol...

    Happy New Year!

  5. Oh my word; that thing would have sent me running for the hills.