January 14, 2015

RIP Gruffy


I'm sad to have to tell you that Gruffy crossed the rainbow bridge last night. I kind of knew it was coming. He'd been slowing down and for the past couple days didn't leave the buck barn. His appetite was still good and he was just as talkative as ever. But at chore time yesterday afternoon I found him down and not interested in getting up, not interested in eating. He passed on shortly after that.

Pygmy goats have an average life expectancy of 8 to 10 years. Gruffy was going on 8. Bucks often have shorter lifespans because they tend to wear themselves out during rut.

He was Dan's favorite goat and has been a fixture on our homestead for the past three and a half years. We bought him to make Kinders but that never happened, so sadly, he leaves no legacy.

RIP Gruffy.

35 comments:

Michelle said...

I'm sorry; do you have any idea of the actual cause? I'm glad he had a good home, a flock, and good caretakers.

PioneerPreppy said...

Losing stock of any kind is sad. One of the favorites just makes it worse.

RIP Gruffy

Jake said...

Sorry for your loss. Animal husbandry unfortunately has low points like these in the cycle. Hopefully the indomitable cheer of spring is not too far away!

1st Man said...

Awww, that's too bad. He had several wonderful years with you and I'm sure he was one spoiled baby. Thinking of you!

Sarah said...

So sorry! It's always hard to lose an animal...even when you know that's it's coming. Sending hugs.

Jayne Hill said...

So sorry, never easy to lose a four-footed member of the family.

Dawn McHugh said...

RIP Gruffy what a fine looking fella he was

Frugal in Derbyshire said...

Always sad to lose an animal, but he died from old age, something I think we all aspire to and a testament to your husbandry.

Leigh said...

Thank you everyone for your kind words. Loss is never easy, and even though I'm pretty well able to remain someone emotionally detached to our critters, I always feel sadness.

Michelle, unless we had an autopsy done there's no way to know. He did not display any symptoms that caused me to think there was a disease process going on, although with animals I know it can be hard to tell. After I started him on the new mineral regimen he really perked up and started to get around better. Considering his age, I tend to think it was that. Rut was always hard on him and sometimes he would barely eat for weeks because his mind was on the does. Good Ol' Gruff.

Gill, I'd like to think that. I've lost a number of young animals so having them live to their life expectancy is a comfort. Still, I always wonder if there wasn't something I could have done to extend that somewhat. I suppose that just comes with the territory as they say.

Farmer Barb said...

Good-bye Gruff. You taught us many lessons.

The Weekend Homesteader said...

Oh no! I'm so sad. He was such a cutie.

Kris said...

Always hard to deal with death of a critter, no matter the cause. Gruff was a good boy and engendered many a post from you. Glad he slipped away peacefully surrounded by familiar surroundings. Gosh, we can all hope for that. The Gruffster will be missed.

Izzy said...

So sad to hear of his passing. I don't believe there's really anything I can say to make it easier, other than I am thinking of you. Hugs from Orlando.

DFW said...

I am so sorry about Gruffy.

Sandy said...

Leigh and Dan,

I'm so sorry to hear about Gruffy.
Our animals are like family. As animal owners we get to enjoy all their qualities while their here with us.

Gruffy leaves you and Dan with great memories.

RIP Gruffy!

Hugs to you and Dan.
Sandy

the Goodwife said...

I hope this doesn't come across as wrong, but I remember a while back you mentioned you were going to have to find Gruffy a home, as you were switching over exclusively to Kinders. God made that easier on you! Now you don't have to worry about him being in a good home, where he is being taken care of. He's lived out the last of his days with you, in a wonderful home, with great care! :)

Dani said...

Sorry to hear about Gruffy. Animals have a way of getting under our skin, don't they?

Mama Pea said...

I'm so sorry, Leigh and Dan. It's inevitable when we keep livestock, but most of the time is a very sad event. I always liked the looks of Gruffy, he was marked so nicely . . . a little Billy Goat Gruff.

Susan said...

Such an outstanding little fellow. I'm glad he landed with you and Dan.

Leigh said...

Thank you for all the kind commiserations. It's nice to have others out there who understand.

Goodwife, I actually thought the same thing. In fact, considering his age, I was thinking it wouldn't be right to sell him. For his sake, but also because being a registered Pygmy, his price would be higher and it wouldn't be fair to sell him to someone only to have him die of old age on them. Things really did work out for the best.

Benita Story said...

Are you going to keep his beautiful pelt?

Mark said...

Leigh and Dan, I'm so sorry to hear about Gruffy. It is hard to lose an animal, even you know it's an eventual certainty. The intellectual bit doesn't ease the pain of losing the emotional connections.

Judy said...

It's always tough to lose an animal no matter the circumstance. Hugs to you and Dan.

Michelle said...

I'm so sorry, Leigh. I know it isn't easy to loose one of our beloved stock. (((HUGS)))

Primroses Attic said...

Really sad to hear about Gruffy Leigh. But at least he had a happy life with you. Take care.
Rosezeeta.

Harry Flashman said...

I am surely sorry to hear that Gruffy passed on. It like to killed me when I lost my favorite ferret this past summer.

But you know, I'm not Catholic, or even Christian but the Pope said a month or so ago that there is a place in heaven for animals too.

That made me feel better. I always figured that they'd be waiting at Rainbow Bridge for me.

Chris said...

This is the saddest news. I feel like I've lost a friend. I can imagine how you guys must feel. We try and be pragmatic about the animals we keep, knowing they are livestock. But the ones you grow attached to - who are constantly part of your daily life, they are sincerely missed when they aren't there any more.

I will be sad not to hear the mischief wonderful Gruffy would've gotten into this growing season. Such a character.

RIP Gruftster, and big hugs to everyone at your Homestead.

Leigh said...

Well, ya'll, I buried him this morning. Randy and Clark stood by to watch. Clark gave him a good sniff but Randy has been calling for him all day. I reckon Randy misses him most, although Gruffy and Clark were sleeping buddies.

Benita, we always say we should have kept the pelts but since Dan is on the road I did not feel like doing that. It was too cold and damp for one thing, and I just wanted to get the job done for another. Elvis (our first Kiko buck) had a beautiful coat and we've regretted not keeping his. But it was our first goat to process and we had enough on our minds without doing that too.

Harry, the Book of Revelation in the Bible mentions horses coming out of heaven being ridden by a great army. So there must be animals in heaven!

Nancy po said...

Glad he was so well cared for and loved :)

Cozy Thyme Cottage said...

I am sorry. Nancy

Tyche's Minder said...

Ohhh, so sorry.

Mare said...

So sorry for your loss. Animals are just as much a part of our lives as are people.

Ngo Family Farm said...

Sorry, Leigh and Dan :( We've had some losses this past year, too, but I'm always so thankful when an animal in our care passes peacefully and naturally, just as Gruffy did. I always say a prayer to St. Francis for our sick or dying animals, mostly that I would know the right thing to do for them, and it's given me a lot of comfort over the years.
xo, Jaime

Kathy said...

Leigh, I am so very sorry to hear of Gruffy's passing. You gave him a good life and I know he's running the green pastures on the other side of the Bridge.
May the emptiness and hurt in your hearts be, with the grace of time, be replaced by fond and happy memories of your beloved Gruffy.
Blessed be.

Quinn said...

Very sorry, Leigh and Dan. It's never easy to lose an animal, but it's such a gift when the passing is a gentle one. RIP Gruffy.