The very bottom of the Totem pole..
This line up is how things work here...
When I first got goats of my own I had Sunshine and her twin sister. They were pals but Sunshine was boss. Then I brought in 4 new does one of them being April who is older than Sunshine but is more easy going. She is second in command though. No one crosses her much. NO ONE Crosses Sunshine period!lol
So then after those 4 new ones of which I only have April now I added Dottie who was tough stuff but did not demand to be crowned queen or she may have given Sunshine a run for her money. Ethel(out of Dottie) and Hope(out of April) were born into the herd so they have an automatic place some where in the middle being some of the higher up's babies!
So then we keep Pixy(out of Sunshine) and Kate(out of Hope). Pixy was automatically Princess! Everyone makes way for her when she is walking with her momma. When she is playing with the babies they give in to her. Kate gets a little sassy but always gives in to Pixy. But they are buds..
When the goats go out into the field Sunshine leads them out.. If she gets spooked and runs back to the barn they all follow... If they are laying in their rocky place she lays farther up the hill watching everything from here spot she can see the back door to the house and the whole field.. When I feed grain she follows me to each feed pan and taste the grain and runs to the next one. Then goes back to the first pan to start eating..
So then I bring in poor little Dollie.. It really is better to buy goats in pairs if possible so they have friend to dodge the Mean Girls with and some one to bed down with at night to help keep warm. So until she bonds with some one she will be out in the cold if we aren't careful..
My plan is that hopefully she will bond with Kate and Pixy while they are all 3 locked away while the buck is visiting. Then in 2 months I will put them back out in the herd. Hopefully by then Dollie will have her sass back and be able to stand up to the Mean Girls. All she has to do is give in a few times after butting heads. Then all should be peaceful...... I can Hope!
They just want to know that she is not there to take over or take their share of the food. They are all coming into heat right now and are extra cranky! Mariah seems to have developed a bad habit of biting tails.. I cant blame her because when she started getting bigger last year Ethel had a bad habit of biting her ears to put her in her place! I just hope that Pixy and Kate don't pick on her to much..
So you see a goat herd is a complicated thing.. They have a definite order to things and you DO NOT buck the system! When introducing a new goat that is of a capable size its better to just keep an eye from a reasonable distances because if you interfere to much it will just start all over again. Its better to just get it over with and hope it doesn't get to crazy.
Sometimes its probably better if you put them in the new herd later at night when they are getting ready to bed down and not to interested in new goats. you have to watch the goats at the bottom because sometimes they don't get all the grain or hay they need. Because no matter how big of a hayrack you may have or no matter how many feed pans they can still get chased out. Then you may find them standing off by themselves and a stressed goat can be a sick goat in no time...
So there you have it how The Goat Hierarchy works here on our little farm....