Today was the big day.  I got up early this morning and prepped the minivan.  Yeah, you heard me, I was planning to pick up a buck in my minivan.  However, we had been assured he was not in rut, and since hauling Sara and Lilac, I learned to take a few precautions.

Redneck goat hauler, consisting of a tarp, a sheet to protect my front seat upholstery and form a fake “wall”, and shavings to prevent any “accidents” from seeping through the tarp.

Then, JR and I left bright and early to make the 2 hour (one way) drive to pick up our handsome new stud buck.  I had seen his pictures, studied his pedigree, and was so excited.  I was expecting this:

Then I learned lesson number 1 of buck ownership… pictures depicting a handsome, freshly washed and shaven, yearling buck are very different from the reality of a 3-year old, fresh-from-the-field, fully mature, ungroomed, stinky, studly beast!  I nearly panicked when I saw him.  The scur (horny growth on his head that happens when they aren’t thoroughly disbudded) made him seem all the more intimidating.  This is what I actually got:

YOWSERS!  So, I spent the next hour talking to the owner, and picking his brain for all sorts of info.  As we chatted, he gave me a tour of his buck pen, which, today, housed “my” buck, Stallion (actually his registered name!), another slightly older Alpine buck, and a pack wether.  As we stood there discussing the ins and outs of buck ownership, the other buck decided to demonstrate some of the disgusting buck habits I had only read about.  He missed marking my leg with his urine by about 6 inches, then proceeded to squirt himself in the face, thoroughly soaking his full beard, and is if that wasn’t bad enough, then begin lapping it up as he peed!  GROSS!!  At least I had been forewarned.  However, when he then tried to snuggle up to me for pets, it was a little more than I could handle, and I ever-so-kindly (but firmly!) pushed him away!  And he isn’t even in rut yet.  The owner said he randomly does it year round, just for kicks!  BLEGH!

Finally, I had all the lovely demonstrating I could stand, and we loaded up Stallion–who, by the way, had proven himself to be somewhat more of a gentlemen with some self-control in the presence of ladies and children.  Thanks to his upbringing, training, and show experience, he is also very well-mannered and gentle, which made feel much better.  I felt like I was hauling a horse stallion in my minivan as massive a beast as he was!

Alas, gentlemen or not, he still smelled!  For the two hour drive home, I had to rotate between blasting the a/c, cracking windows, and opening rear vents, in addition to making lots of funny faces as a direct result of Stallion’s smell.  JR was a good sport, until Stallion decided to dump a nice big pile 2 feet from our seats.  The smell of pungent, processed alfalfa mixed with buck cologne was almost more than we could bear!  Finally, after failing to hold our breath for the remainder of the drive, we finally reached home.

I forewarned S that the pictures we had seen were slightly different than reality.  Then he got his first view of Stallion:

Although quite surprised, I think S was genuinely impressed with the sheer masculinity of this new addition.  He wasn’t quite so impressed later, however, when he tried to get the putrid buck smell out of our van.

So we are now the proud owners of a top-quality buck, and look forward to having some beautiful babies out of him next spring.  After a few days in quarantine (or as long as we can stand his odor that close to the house), he will be introduced to Lilac and shack up with her for awhile.

There is just one more issue I have to figure out.  Our children have been quite sheltered from knowledge of the birds and bees of life.  It is easy to hide that kind of thing with rabbits who just like to “play” and nothing is visible.  Goats on the other hand aren’t going to be quite so simple to explain.  JR got one look at this angle and asked, “Uuh, Mom, WHAT is THAT?!”

At which time, M promptly spoke up and asked, “Why does he need that?” Oh boy.  Welcome to a whole new realm of farm life.