An approach to holistic goat care through practical pastoralism. Restoring the practice of symbiotic goat husbandry to modern goat herd management, and raising goats in nature and with nature.
Hi There. If you’re reading this post you’ve made your way to this blog possibly having come across my posts on groups and boards devoted to holistic, natural approaches to homesteading and herd management.
Or maybe a friend shared my blog with you. I’d like to bring rhyme and reason to this topic. I began journaling my experiences about both successes and failures, as a way to help other goat herders struggling with the same issues I encountered. Also as an aid to those that are considering this approach of raising goats holistically - in nature and with nature, whether they have goats now or plan to start a herd soon.
GOAT YOUR LAND will be the banner under which my blog posts will be composed.
The title, GOAT YOUR LAND is not an arbitrary catchy term. It represents the entire scope of how I raise my herd. GOAT YOUR LAND represents the essentials for getting started in the practicum of pastoralism and symbiotic goat husbandry.
I have no list showing where I’ve been published. There is no alphabet soup after my name that can denote the worthiness of my perspective. What I share, was born out of immersion and intimacy of working with animals that provide for us daily. Along the way, having encountered the pastoral roots of western culture. But here is something about me, so you know a little of the heart and the person behind the “keyboard” so to speak.
After growing up and living most of my adult life in some of the largest metropolitan regions in the U.S., my husband and I finally arrived on a 25 acre homestead in 2013. Our Nubians entered our world a year later. We were always a natural family, making decisions like homeschooling our two sons, and choosing not to vaccinate, when those ideas were taboo. We built our own house, and systematically embraced good natural food and down to earth home remedies. I was convinced that with my past experience, leaving the city and upstarting a homestead, a thing like raising a small herd of Nubians would be a breeze. That idea would soon be tested. Transitioning to land was both exciting and overwhelming. I recall sobbing on our way home after closing on the farm. Wondering what had we gotten ourselves into?
It soon became apparent we had much to learn. Most places we looked for answers were providing conventional methods and treatments, or parroting techniques that were counterproductive. Yet in my heart I sensed I was missing key elements in the husbandry my Nubians needed to have. That began my journey of research, experimentation, successes and some failures.
The modern world of farming and goat raising, I discovered to my disappointment, is quite different from pastoralism. In many ways it is devoid of practical methods beneficial for the natural resonance essential for a goat's subsistence. It seems the cattle people, the sheep and the equine communities have droves of resources on rearing that livestock. But with goats I seemed to have stepped into a shallow pool. It is from this path that I pause to share with you what I’ve learned. In hopes that it may in some way help you raise happier and healthier animals, or provide a solution if you're frustrated, overwhelmed or feel like giving up goats altogether.
Under ideal circumstances pastoralism is, based on my observations and research the quintessential method for raising goats.
Thus getting as close to ideal is the end goal, knowing I may come short in more ways than one. Don’t be discouraged if some of what you read, cannot be implemented in your neck of the woods, or your small patch of love in the city. There is something here for everyone, and there will be tips that most any goat and goatherd will benefit from. Take what you can, and start from their. Sharing what you find may also help someone else. In the end, the methods and resources shared on GOAT YOUR LAND, of practical pastoralism and symbiotic goat husbandry will add to any goat’s wellbeing, and hopefully yours as a goatherd as well. Before I continue sharing on some key elements of practical pastoralism and symbiotic goat husbandry, this may be a good place to clarify what it isn't.