Greta

Greta was our 11th rescue – we are so honored that she spent her later years here with all the care she deserved! She came from a neglect case in Cincinnati, OH and due to the circumstances; there is not a lot of information. She was rescued by Speak Up for Horses out of Falmouth, KY with several horses, and they contacted us about providing Sanctuary for her. Greta’s previous caretaker has very progressed Alzheimer’s, and the animals had been neglected for some time. Fortunately, a neighbor finally reported the neglect of the animals, as their body conditions had greatly diminished. We held off on providing Greta with her name, as we had hoped to find out the name she had most of her life, but it isn’t possible with her previous caretaker’s condition.

The caring neighbor did report that Greta had lived there for about 13yrs – which is pretty old for a goat. At some point, she was with other goats, but of late, she was a sole goat. She had definitely had babies and could have possible been used for her milk – but we aren’t sure.

Greta’s hooves were grossly overgrown, causing pain when she walked, in addition to her arthritis – her bones pop when she walked too. Due to their condition, it was a slow process of small trims to her hooves for many weeks. She was a very large girl but underweight and bony. We started her on a senior feed, daily medication for her arthritis, and probiotics. We  got a full blood panel and nutritional profile as well, that helped us address specific nutritional needs.

She is settled in nicely and started to become very vocal, especially when she heard the lid to the alfalfa cube can! She loved fresh vegetation we gathered and brought to her from the sanctuary grounds.

Greta passed with our Vet’s assistance on Monday November 23, 2015. While decisions like this are extremely difficult, they are a necessary part of our work. Greta passed with Mark and Michelle cradling her head and body, comforting her, and reminding her of how much she is loved. While Greta was only with us for seven months, she left a huge impression on our hearts. Greta embodied peace, serenity, and grace.

It was a true privilege to care for her, especially in her senior years, when she needed TLC the most. We will miss her curious and smiling face greeting us every time we entered the barn — making sure we didn’t have a treat to share. While our hearts are aching, we find some solace in knowing Greta knew we loved her, that she had comfort and honor in her last months, and through her passing. While she was nearly fourteen (very old for a goat)when she passed, she still had a very strong will. And she certainly loved her treats! We gave her medications in a banana, and she always looked for more.

Greta being the strong-willed girl that she was still moved about her stall slowly. When the weather turned really cold, she didn’t move much during the nights. On the 23rd when we made our rounds for normal feeding, we found Greta still lying down and extremely bloated (death for a goat if not treated). We immediately got her up, treated her with anti-bloat medication, moved her around a bit, rubbed her stomach, until the gas started releasing. While, the bloat was released, she was still very uncomfortable, partly because she had been up on her legs way too long without much rest. Most of that afternoon she moved back and forth between her straw piles in her stall, changing up her positioning in an attempt to get comfortable. She wasn’t interested in food except her beloved bananas. Then around dinner time, we noticed that she started bloating again, which was devastating news, her rumen just wasn’t able to get going with her lack of movement. We treated her with anti-bloat medicine again and called the Vet.

We knew the kindest thing to do was to euthanize her, so that she didn’t die a horrible death by bloat. We had a few hours before the Vet would arrive …. So we sat with her rubbing between her horns, hugging her, and just being present with her. Mark and Michelle were both were both holding her and telling her she was loved as she passed.

Be free, Sweet Greta, you will be missed and forever in our hearts!