Bucks, coming out of rut (April 2017)

Bucks crack me up. Mostly because they’re scary and bonkers all in the same moment.

‘Coming into rut,’ in case you don’t know, is the hormone surge that happens to bucks during breeding seasons. If you’ve ever seen a buck in rut, you’ll know that they do extremely lovely things like pee on themselves and blubber at anything on four (or even two) legs that wanders past. That stereotype about goats smelling? Yeah, it’s from them.

Right now I have two bucks in the barn: Aztec and Sauvie. Sauvie I bought two years ago because I absolutely loved his color (blonde!) and his conformation was excellent. I’d been eyeing him for a few months on craigslist… and my fiancee bought him for me when I moved in with him (moved in with the fiancee. Not Sauvie). Sauvie came to me at 8 months as the sweetest little buck who ever lived. He just wanted to cuddle and be next to you.

Aztec I raised from a baby long with his sister, Magnolia (who unfortunately died from a freak accident I’ll someday share). So he’s VERY tame and well behaved. He inherited some of his father’s bossiness, but his mother’s shy affectionate character is definitely in there too.

Then September and the hormones arrived.

That’s what bucks do, so I expected it. I knew what was going to happen. I was just more surprised as how much of the horn-dog mania could be seen in there eyes. I mean, the peeing on themselves was bad enough (Sauvie? Not so white anymore…), but they raced around and fought and snorted at everything that moved. It was a little difficult to get into their pen without being covered or knocked over (some lessons in who’s boss had to be taught — the downside of friendly bucks). Half the time the whites of their eyes showed and they looked like they were high on some serious drugs. I couldn’t pet them (with gloves of course) without being attacked by their tongues as they attempted to impress my hand with their blubbering.

Now it’s April. I’d been noticing the lack of fighting and general carrying on, but I’d been so used to them being insane I wasn’t really paying attention.

IMG_3643.JPGThis evening, I was tickled to notice Aztec watching me move around, alert and attentive. So I wandered over and gave them both some attention.

They nearly fell over in shock when I stroked their noses and chins. I guess it has been a while since I’ve actually touched them. Sauvie’s eyes actually glazed I stroked his cheeks for a while, which was kind of endearing.

Shockingly, they don’t smell so much anymore. My hands smelled a little bad after giving attention, but their faces (along with their front legs, usually the worst of the pee-targets) were only a little musky.

It’s nice to know my boys are back to the realm of the sane and friendly! They’ll be needing baths before I’ll really spend time with them (drat it weather, warm up), but I’m looking forward to actually knowing their personalities again.

Side note: The fur on their noses is so soft… it’s amazing, almost like baby fur! I’m not sure what that’s about, but definitely makes me want to pet noses…

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