4 Gendarmes, 3 goats and a mayor!

Sounds like it could be a title for a spoof film, but - at lunchtime on Monday we had three large male goats arrive at our front gate. Our "very strange" neighbour has been "keeping them in his house" They had managed to escape through an open window in the top floor, and by the time I found them they were careering along our road heading for the not too distant route nationale! It was 1pm - not the best time to call the gendarmes, but in order to avoid an accident, I thought it was worth a try. As anticipated, they finished their lunch and arrived from the village that is normally just five minutes away - at 2.10 - just an hour and 10 minutes after the call. Buckets at the ready, with the mayor and his cronies in tow, they took just two hours to catch one of the goats, leaving us to catch the rest ( of course - it was goute time)
To cut a rather hilarious afternoons entertainment short, the gendarmes suggested that we have three options

1 - to put the goats back in the house where they had come from - ( I'd discovered there was no food or water there)

2 - to keep the goats on my property ( not an option as we are open to the public, and it would be illegal for them to be at our animal park without the correct paperwork)

3 - to call the chasse to shoot them - also not really an option as they're not my goats to shoot

4 - for me to attempt to rehome them - also an illegal option as they're not my goats to rehome.

2 days later - 2 buckets of feed, and several buckets of water, ( supplied by us) and the goats remain inside the house over the road. A visit to the mayors office and I was advised options 1, 2 and 4 as they are unable to find the owners of the property and thus, the legal owners of the goats.

So - over to you SFN survivors - what would YOU do... alternatively - does anyone want a goat?

I have often wondered too what happened to the poor goats. Thx for reviving this post.

I wanted to write up this story in a column I do for a Russian radio network. Has anything happened since last October?

There's a good idea Glen - I've tried the SPA - but not Phoenix. Does anyone have their contact details please?

Ah Sue - you seriously don't have to defend their reticence with me, our local SPA are amazing, they do phenomenal work under very hard circumstances, in the first instance they simply cannot accommodate goats, they are overloaded with dogs and cats, and there seems to be no one else who can help.

In the meantime, I'm having to feed and water these poor goats, that the owner has only got in the last 2 weeks, so I can't imagine they want to rehome them - something in the back of my mind indicates they've been obtained for "Christmas fodder" and in the meantime, it's me who's feeding the poor things!
It's catch 22, and I really can't work out a solution for the situation!

Oh yes a photo... Jolly good idea!

We are most definitely on speaking terms with the owner ( despite the fact that they're Spanish and COMPLETELY mad), but this is half the problem - whilst they own the property they're never there, it's derelict, hence there are goats living in it - and whilst they're neighbours - they are still some way away from our property so it's difficult to catch them, the gendarmes have left notes on the door asking them to contact them, as have the mayors office who also have no contact details!!

In the meantime I'm stuck with feeding and watering the bloody things!

I can't let them loose or I end up with the same problem - either they go on the main road and cause an accident, or they come our way and break into our goat herd!! Tempting as it is to liberate them, it's really not an option - for now I'm taking buckets of food and water to the house, which is also illegal as I'm effectively breaking in!

Much as i am enjoying the goat recipe page and have genuine sympathy for your current predicament, i am a regular volunteer at our local SPA to the extent i am off there this morning to do some work. I feel obliged to defend their retiscence. Our local one is quite literally inondated with Dogs and Cats, this week alone some 18 puppies have been dumped on the doorstep, merely to abrigate responsibility to someone else to whom you probably never contribute is not a solution. I know the SPA movement would love to help but sometimes in fairness for the already dumped animals the answer has to be NO, regretable though it is. Best wishes and well done for not dumping the problem

Ohhhh, I am so sorry you have to deal with this. Yes, goats are jumpers - hence their escape from the top floor of a home. I know you are concerned for their welfare but the powers that be don't seem to care and with tomorrow being Toussaint nothing will happen til Monday. So maybe on Monday you just let them loose and some one else will have to deal with them. Cruel? Practical? I don't envy you the decision. Bonne chance...

Mrs Bird....As I happen to know you have one very gorgeous photo of you looking very, very, very attractive, taken by one of the very best photographers in the world (well okay Benesse les Dax) - would ya please upload it!

Re the goats - are you on speaking terms with the owner? Could you offer to 'help' re-home them? If so, we could put a shout out? xx

This is true, but I already have my own very settled miniature goat herd, to introduce 3 males to the park would be catastrophic - as you may know, goats are great jumpers and climbers, it's taken us a great time to establish a herd, and to have giant goats, the cost of fencing alone would be prohibitive, let alone worming, vet visits and the like, not to mention the smell! Further, these goats don't belong to us, despite the gendarmes suggesting we take them, it's not legal. Male goats are not easy to rehome, our nearest SPA is 40 minutes drive and they don't want to know! But thanks for the suggestion!
Goat byriani is delicious, but again, the goats are male, mature and don't belong to us!

You have an animal park, they are animals. Can't you obtain the proper paperwork to keep them?

I would love to have them if we had the room.....

Goat roti even nicer!!!

Don’t know when your neighbour is going to be back, but I’d be tempted to get them to the local abbatoir, and then, get them in your freezer! Goat curry…heaven!