Monday, April 5, 2010

GOATS!

I have heard that goats will eat anything, and that makes them sort of like my brothers Barry and Mel.  Ha! But anyway, I am going to talk about goats today because Mom took pictures of one at the zoo.  This goat was very pushy and forward because he wanted Mom to give him some treats.  You can buy goat treats at the zoo by putting a quarter in the dispenser thingy, but Mom didn't have any quarters left because she already had bought some treats for the roe deer, who it turned out were too lazy to even get up and come eat the treats.

But the goats were not lazy!  They really wanted the treats.  So Mom had to go inside the building and get quarters from a machine there.  And after that, she could give treats to the goats.

The goats at the zoo are domestic goats, like people keep on their farms.  People have been keeping goats for a long, long time, like maybe since 10,000 years ago.  Goats are useful to people in a lot of ways, and here are some of them:
1.  Goats give milk which is easy to digest, and it can also be made into butter and cheese.
2.  Goat meat is yummy to eat.
3.  Goat hair can be made into sweaters and stuff.
4.  Goat skins can be used to hold water or wine or to make parchment.
5.  Goats can be used as pack animals.
6.  Goat horns can be made into spoons.

There's this one kind of goat called a cashmere goat, and it has really nice, soft hair, and this is used to make cashmere wool, which costs a lot to buy.  But at the zoo, they don't have any cashmere goats.

Some people say that goat meat tastes like lamb, but other people say it tastes like other kinds of meat.  You can stew it, bake it, grill it, barbecue it, fry it, curry it, or make sausage out of it.  Mom ate goat meat one time when she was in Peru visiting the girl she sponsors there.  The goat meat that Mom ate was stewed with some veggies and stuff.  Mom thought it tasted pretty good.  I never ate any goat meat before, but I wish I had some to eat.  I don't care how it is fixed or even if it is raw.  All I know is that writing about it is making my mouth water!

Goats themselves don't eat meat because they are vegetarians.  They like to browse on shrubs and weeds.  They don't usually eat grass, like cows do.  Goats' favorite hay to eat is alfalfa.  At the zoo on Saturday, Mom and Aunt LaDene saw the keeper fill up the goats' manger with alfalfa.  The keeper told Mom and Aunt LaDene what all the goats' names were, but Mom forgot all the names except for the name of one pygmy goat, which was Shirley.

A goat's stomach has four different parts.  These parts are named the rumen, the reticulum, the omasum, and the abomasum.  I guess goats need all these stomachs in order to digest tough stuff like weeds and shrubs, but it all seems pretty complicated to me.  I'm glad I don't have four stomachs because I might get confused about which one to use when.  Oh, and did you know that goats' intestines are used sometimes to make "catgut"?  Catgut is what doctors use to sew up your wounds, and it's also used to make strings on musical instruments.

I think that goats have really funny-looking eyes, and that's because the pupil in their eyes is kind of a slit shape instead of being round.  Supposedly, if you have these slit-shaped pupils, you can see stuff better off to either side of you, but I don't know if this is true or not because I have never looked through a goat's eyes.

Goats are very curious about stuff, and that's why they are always checking new things out with their lips and tongues.  Goats are smart, too, and you can teach them to pull carts or walk on a lead, just like a dog.  Also they can climb on stuff, like trees and fences.  There are shows for goats, too, and they can win ribbons, but I don't think they do agility or lure coursing.

I told Mom I think maybe we should adopt a goat, but she said it's not a good idea because a goat would eat all her flowers.  Also a goat might eat a hole in our fence or in the side of our house.  One time on that TV show Hoarders, there was a woman who had goats, and the goats had eaten through the wall of her garage, so I know that this can really happen.  And that's why I think Mom is right.  We are better off without a goat in our family.

2 comments:

  1. Oh Piper, goats are neat creatures, but not as clever or nice looking as basenjis. There used to be some next door, but then one day they were gone. They aren't too smart though, sometimes they'd get their head stuck in the fence and then do the same thing the next day.

    I don't know how long I have to be in training. Mom has been slack with my education lately because she says she has a cold. I think I have to be in training until I'm retired.

    Your friend,
    Zest, superstar in training

    ReplyDelete