Chickens are the gateway drug to livestock. We are not even through our first year of chickens and we are already planning for our next livestock. For us city dwellers, that would be goats. Goats are smart, tame, often fun-loving, and produce milk. As we strive to be more sustainable and look for healthier ways to feed our body, goats seemed like a natural progression. We would know where our milk came from and what that milk-producing animal ate throughout its life. Not to mention, Anne is allergic to cow milk. So far, she has shown no ill effects to goat milk.
Along with the benefits, there are many concerns regarding owning goats. It is winter here in Chicago and currently hovering around 0 degrees. That makes the daily trek to the chicken coop to feed and water them very unenjoyable. With goats, we would have another outdoor animal to feed and water. We would also have to milk them twice a day. That is a lot of additional work! We are counting that cost before jumping in.
We visited a farm a couple months ago in our research to find the perfect goat breed. I will go more into that in another post. The trip taught us that it would be fun and that our girls would love it. Arrietty went right up to about 10 goats as they huddled away from her. She just wrapped her arms around one their necks and tamed it instantly. I wonder if we should wait until she’s a little older so she can be more helpful with the animal chores.
I’ll keep you updated on our journey. For now, we are happy with chicken, waiting patiently for eggs in the spring, and planning what may be next for our burgeoning homestead.