Goats In Lust: They’re Just Like Us!

We’d all like to think we’ve evolved way past our animal antecedents, having transcended the baser survival instincts that propelled us from the primordial ooze to this moment. These very instincts have been variously invoked by relationship experts, who will one day have us believing that we’re not that different from our mammalian brethren and the next consoling us with the alleged ocean that exists between our higher selves and our need-driven beast counterparts.

All that stuff about how men can’t be expected to be faithful because they’re programmed to spread their seed much like our ape ancestors did … I mean who the fuck knows? Seems like a pretty convenient theory that leaves out a lot of female agency.  I’m hardly an expert in matters of love, human evolution or animal psychology, but I did recently begin a new career in goat husbandry, and if my weeks inside a barn witnessing the aforementioned ruminants breed is any indication, we’re really not so far off from our quadripedular (not a word but it stays) friends. Here are some things that I found eerily familiar in simultaneously distressing and comforting ways. Being that I’m totally objective and trained in these matters, I will say authoritatively that these observations basically reaffirmed my suspicion that dudes are by and large totally addled idiots when fueled by lust, and that sex makes bitches act cray. Highly scientific stuff. I’m probably going to be awarded an honorary degree from somewhere any minute.

1. Lust-drunk dudes/goats are truly dumb and terrifying. Have you ever seen a buck in rut before? I hadn’t either. Let me just say: motherfucker is scary as hell! Not only is he all oily and smelly, but his eyes are wild and rolly and his tongue lolls out of his mouth and he makes the most terrifying noises imaginable. I am an animal lover to my core but I have never seen anything quite as disgusting and unnerving as a man-goat hell bent on inseminating as many does as he possibly can. I have seen bucks in their relatively normal states and they are imposing but otherwise totally cool, even cuddly! But when they’re ready to get their swerve on they appear … how to put this politely? Mentally compromised. Brain damaged. Borderline seizure-y. While I’ve not necessarily seen my human bros pulling quite the same faces when they’re out trying to score, I have seen them behave in utterly mystifying ways that are without question the barely sublimated dude versions of the berzerker goat countenance thus described.

2. Sex can be violent, aggressive and shame-filled. In goat sex, a buck will do a lot of grunting, sniffing and persistently trying to mount the lady of his momentary passions. Sound familiar? He also tends to sometimes get a little carried away in the act of love-making, literally banging the poor lady goat into the wall or whatever. And sometimes, AFTER the deed is done, homeboy actually goes so far as to “scorn” his recent conquest. The other day, this buck was all about getting into the (non)pants of one of the older does in the herd. She’s a sweet little thing, but she’s def seen better days. Ratty ears, dull eyes, uneven udders. Whatever, this buck was into it … until immediately after he’d had his way with her, after which time he kept ramming (pun intended) the poor do(e)wager into the side of the pen, chasing her around and generally being a total dick. It was like as soon as he busted a nut he got all embarrassed or something. Like she lowered his worth and his friends were gonna give him shit or something. Sex remorse followed by scorning: a legacy passed down from the animal kingdom!

3. Girls in heat are a pain in the ass. Even before the breeding officially started, in the days leading up to it, the does were getting progressively more and more difficult to handle. They were fighting with each other CONSTANTLY (even the ones that were besties), stirring up all sorts of trouble, refusing to eat and generally being total fucking divas. I don’t know about you, but when I’m sprung on a guy I am positively intolerable. I don’t eat (my usual mass quantities of food), can’t focus on what my friends are saying and am outright rude to people who distract me from my daydreams. I am not saying I’ve head-butted people. But I’m not saying I haven’t.

Goats In Lust: They're Just Like Us!

4. There’s no accounting for taste. Sometimes you put a buck in the pen with a girl who’s in heat. She’s young and fertile and “goat pretty” but he’s just not feeling it. Even with hormones raging, sometimes you just can’t fake chemistry or force a lurv match. I’m sure Patti Stanger would have some theories about the color of the goat’s hair or something, but I give dude goats a little credit for being discerning, even when they’re simultaneously being utterly maniacal and vaguely rapey.

5. Men come and go but ladygoatfriendship is forever. Ultimately two weeks of breeding subsides and the girls get back to kibbitzing and hanging out with each other and all but forget about the bucks, who have served their purpose and are dispensed with for the season. Not murdered, geez, relax. The really important things become important once again — eating, sleeping, pooping, complaining about their boobs, occasionally getting into mischief and just living their lives, free of those pesky buck guys. In other words, coupling serves a purpose, but that purpose is specific and finite and fleeting.

And thus concludes my first impressions of the goat-human interface. Please feel free to forward any other goat-related questions to me and I will use my limited expertise to probably make something up. Til next time!

Lauren Gitlin is a writer, cheese-maker and goat matchmaker. Follow her adventures on her blog, Gittles In Dairyland.