Saturday, May 12, 2012

Bella Goes to Jail

My good friend Terri in Virginia sent me a great idea for dealing with Bella.  Terri's daughter lives in the Seattle area and Terri met a woman there who runs a goat rescue.  So, Terri contacted the rescue lady to see if she could offer any advice about the Bella jumping problem.  She said she gets a lot of goats with jumping problems.  Imagine that?! Are you listening Bella?  Want to live in Seattle?

The way they cure their goats of jumping is by using a tie line.  When the goat jumps out, they are tied to the tie line and segregated from the herd.  They have access to food and water, of course, but they remain on the tie line for 24 hours.  Then they are let loose to join the herd.  If they jump out again, they get tied up again.  She said that within a week or two, the goat figures it out and stops jumping.  Brilliant!

Friday, Bella jumped out.  We didn't have a tie line set up yet so we put her in the goat shed with food and water, and locked the door.  The weather wasn't too hot and there is a screen door Brett built that fits in the lower half of the Dutch door.  She has ventilation, food and water.  She didn't have her herd or the ability to roam.  She was ANGRY.  She cried herself hoarse (which was difficult to listen to).  She managed to get one corner of the screen unlatched and pushed her way out.  We found her sunning herself on a boulder inside the goat pen.  We went out to investigate and while we were in the pen, she jumped back out.  So back into the shed she went, screaming bloody murder as we shut the top of the door.  She screamed herself hoarse.

This morning, Brett set up a tie pole we used with the dog when we used to go camping.  It is a metal stake driven deep into the ground, with a swivel top.  Brett tied the rope to the swivel and when Bella jumped out (immediately), she was snapped to the other end.  She didn't scream, she can be with the herd  but she can't roam around and she can't jump out.  She did try but it didn't work out too well for her.  She landed, ka-thunk, on the same side of the fence as she started. 

Thistle checked out the lead rope we used to tie Bella to the stake.

She can get to the hay, the water and shade. 
The best part was that we didn't have a jumping or a screaming goat during the clinic with Gayle.  Success!

Thanks Terri!


  1. sure hope they don't figure out to chew thru the rope! hope it works!

  2. That is a great idea! I hope Bella learns her lesson.

    Looking forward to hearing about the clinic.


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