I have not been able to write this post. Three weeks ago our sweet goat, Dina, died. I loved her so. She was 14 years old, maybe more. She was arthritic and slow, and we had worried at how she would manage the winter. I had also fretted over the summer that she might leave us while I was away.
When I came home from my course we had several lovely evenings together; I took the goats out on walks and Dina followed slowly behind. I fed her grape leaves and pears and stroked her ears. She mostly took to sitting quietly in one spot up on the hill, where she could enjoy the fresh breeze and look over the landscape, practically to where she had been born, on a neighboring property. On the Tuesday she died I greeted her in her spot on the hill when I came home, and she was breathing heavily. Later, she stood and walked toward the shed, but did not make it in. She fell and David and I ran to her- she died quickly, was not in pain long, and I stroked her and sang to her at the end. It was a lovely early fall evening, and she had enjoyed the most lovely summer here. I will miss her very much.
We had also been in the process of looking for a new home for Lucky and for one of her girls, Ajla. We had thought that our little shed would be cramped with all five goats, and had decided to breed just Kara and Izzie, since Ajla continued to be so shy and skittish. Ironically, we received a call from an interested party the same evening Dina died. They came over two days later and bought Lucky and Ajla- she works for the our veterinarian, and lives nearby, so we will have the opportunity to visit from time to time.
Kara and Izzie, and I, have spent some time adjusting to being only two. I miss our big goat family, and most of all I miss Dina. I think they do too. Our plan is to breed Kara and Izzie in the spring, and welcome new kids next August. I am happy that Dina’s lovely character lives on in our sweet Izzie, and that we will have the chance to carry her line into a new family of goats. For now, David and I are still grieving. It is remarkable how much a beloved animal, and its loss, can affect you. I find myself thinking of Dina as an old soul- she was so calm, and affectionate, and present. I am very grateful for having known her and having had her in my life. Goodbye, my lovely friend.