This is our journal of what we pray is our sojourn of life (Hebrews 11:8-10) along the narrow way (Matthew 7:14), even the old paths (Jeremiah 6:16), submitting to the Bible as a light unto both (Psalms 119:105). It is our prayer that these documented moments in our earthly time benefit whom God might choose to edify, but ultimately that God glorifies Himself through them.

Providence’s Perpetuation Provisions: New Kids “Ralphie” and “Alice”

So, a little over five months ago, Sue saw Minnie, one of our does, with her hind-end backed up against the fence, and one of our bucks, Shatner, her sire, trying to perform his male duty. From a distance, it looked like he was able to accomplish his task — through the fence; but after Sue told me, I just couldn’t see how that was physically possible. But over the past couple of months, we saw Minnie looking pregnant; and I believe I felt one of the kids through her side.

Well, about a week and a half ago, I was looking over at the goats from our orchard and saw a black and white goat laying next to Minnie. I thought, “Wow, Minnie and Adeline (our black and white doe that is in the same pen with her) are sure cozying up.” But then I realized that the goat next to Minnie had long, floppy ears, whereas Adeline has the tiny LaMancha ears.

I ran up there, and sure enough, Minnie had given birth…to twins — a male and female.

Introducing Ralphie and Alice. Here’s Ralphie:

New Goat Kid Ralphie

And here’s Alice:

New Goat Kid Alice

And them together:

New Goat Kids Ralphie and Alice

And here is a video of them a few days old:

Although the inbreeding situation wasn’t what we had planned, we are thankful to the Lord for the new provisions, and that they appear to be healthy, and for the safe and healthy delivery for both Minnie and new kids.

— David


  1. Ernest

    Inbreeding in goats is not as big of a problem as some people will tell you it is. Unless there are obvious abnormalities (in which case they probably shouldn't be allowed to breed anyway) then it will take generations to create problems.

    Congratulations on the new kids! I love to see animals grazing and I love to see babies following their mommas around in the pasture. It's a very visible sign of God's providence and the wealth of the homesteader increasing.

  2. David and Susan Sifford

    Hi Ernest,

    Thanks for the info. Yes, our plan right now is to inbreed every other generation, in hopes that is enough; and then I figure that by the time a higher number of skipped-generation-breeding occurs Lord willing, the buck will be too old to breed or otherwise.

    And yes, it's a joy to watch the growing-up process.

    Thanks again, and for saying hello.

    — David

  3. Ernest

    A great trick for homesteaders is to find a neighbor (like myself) who has a buck with qualities you like and bring him over to visit your herd every other year or so. So long as the traits are good you can keep problems from your herd forever.

    If all you're looking for is freshening your does then you wouldn't really care about problems in the kids as you'll be eating them anyway.

    Those are some great-looking goats. I see no evidence in the photos of physical problems. You are blessed!

  4. Ann from KY

    I had also heard that inbreeding in goats did not affect them as much as other animals. The big fancy breeders actually do that on purpose and call it "line breeding."

    Have you ever considered disbudding the horns on the babies? Especially on a girl you will use as a milker. It's a little safer for the milking humans!

  5. David and Susan Sifford

    Hi Ann,

    At this point, we've decided to not disbud. While it probably helps with the fences, we haven't had trouble really with goat horns and us, and we think it's more natural to let them be in that regard.

    Thanks for the info and for saying hi.

    — David

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