The title is pretty self explanatory for this one, so let’s jump right in!
A Definitive List of Everything You Ever Needed to Know About Raising Bottle Kids*
- They will chew on, and attempt to eat, everything they can get their grubby little mouths on. This will include, but is not limited to, tissues, plastic gloves, your shoe laces, your clothes, blankets, their own puppy pads, each other’s ears, and your hair. Especially your hair. The good news is you will no longer need a trim.
- They will pee everywhere. Despite puppy pads, which they will promptly move about and roll up, the pee will escape their enclosure. Your mother will slip and fall on this pee. It will be funny later, but not at that moment.
- They will also pee in your lap. Then your dad’s lap. It will be funny when it isn’t happening to you.
- They will use the furniture as launching pads and trampolines. They will also consider your body to be part of the furniture. They will stick their butts in your face so that they can leap from your shoulders to the floor like little flying monkeys.
- When it’s time for them to start staying in the barn during the day, they will eventually grow wise to your scheme and be reluctant to follow you down there. Instead they will scatter and attempt to trick you into thinking they should really be going back inside.
- Despite wanting to be indoors where the human-food-givers live, they will not follow you from the barn to the house. They will run under the horses feet just to scare you, and will keep just out of grabbing distance as you try to catch them. They will chew your hair, squirm, and cry when you finally catch them to carry them to the gate. Once at the gate, they will run ahead of you to the porch, suddenly remembering that following the human to the big warm house means it’s supper time.
- Occasionally, two will follow you from the barn to the gate, but the third one will remain at the barn. Despite being within hearing and seeing distance, being left will confuse him. He will stand at the barn, look in your direction, and yell until you finally go get him.
- They will jump on the cats and dogs. The cat will think they are wonderful playthings, but the dog will only think they’re cute for about a day. Then she will grow tired of their antics.
- They will all hump each other on a regular basis. The bucklings will practice their blubbering, and this will disturb your mother. You, however, will find the sound of a baby trying to blubber hilarious.
- Eventually their voices will get quite loud. They will also learn that kitchen sounds mean milk is coming. This is not a good combination. They will yell until you feed them, and while you are trying to feed them they will fight over the bottles even though there is one for each of them. This will result in milk all over the floor, but don’t worry — your dog will lick it up.
- You will shave their heads to watch for horn bud growth. This will look hilarious, but it will be disappointing when all three grow horns even though their dam was polled and the polled gene is supposed to be passed on about 50% of the time.
- You will have to disbud them. This will be stinky and unpleasant for all involved, even though it’s for the best. You will try to film the disbudding process to share with others who want/need to learn, but your camera will not work and you will miss the opportunity.
- You will buy more milk and puppy pads than any normal, non-goat-rearing person would ever possibly need. I recommend rotating stores so the cashiers don’t start giving you odd looks.
- You will break the handle of your favorite basket by trying to fit a now-too-big kid into it to be weighed, to be sure he is growing. Hint: He is growing. The fact that he no longer fit in the basket should have been a clue. Second Hint: Perhaps you also need a scale that is actually made for weighing baby goats.
- Even though they are sometimes a nuisance, interrupt your sleep, cry loudly any time you enter your kitchen, and make an inexplicably large mess for such small little creatures, you will secretly miss them when they are in the barn. Because they also take naps in your lap, try to nurse your nose, and make you laugh with every goofy, adorable thing they do.
I hope you enjoyed this! After my last post, this blog needed some levity! And don’t worry, bottle babies aren’t really as bad as they sound. They’re actually a lot of fun to have around, but it’s also nice when they’re not quite so needy. Even though I love them, I’ll still be sticking to dam raising except when necessary. I prefer being grandma to being mom!
*Not actually everything you need to know.