Someone may have taken baby goat snuggles too far.
The owners of Yellow Point Farms south of Nanaimo allege that one of their baby goats, just 12 days old, was stolen on Saturday during a baby goat snuggles program at their farm.
“We didn’t want to believe that,” said Rebecca Dault. “We were like, there’s no way someone would steal a goat. But after looking for hours and hours, there really is no other explanation. There’s no sign of him. There couldn’t have been predators because there was so many people.”
The goat snuggling program is exactly what it sounds like, a chance to “hold and snuggle the baby goats to heart’s content.”
Rebecca and Justin Dault said Saturday’s baby goat snuggles was one of their most well-attended yet, with about 50 people there, mostly families, between 1-3 p.m. Many of those who attended have sent photos to help the Daults pin down the time the goat could have been taken, perhaps 1:30-2 p.m.
Justin said he looked for four hours yesterday and throughout the day today.
“It’s kind of like kidnapping. We feel violated. We couldn’t even sleep last night over it,” he said.
He said that at the baby goat snuggling and goat yoga programs, visitors to the farm commonly joke about ‘kid-napping.’
“People always joke about, ‘oh, I’m taking this goat home’ or ‘I’m keeping this goat’ and fake like they’re smuggling one out,” he said. “It’s all fun and jokes, but someone took it too far and actually did.”
He said he’s considering setting up a security camera in future, but the couple aren’t even certain they want to continue with the snuggle program.
“Its mom is crying. She’s been crying ever since; she’s looking for him, and if he was stuck somewhere, he’d be crying too,” Rebecca said.
She said the photos don’t quite get across how small the baby goat is; she estimates five pounds. The allegedly stolen goat has “very rare colouring,” Rebecca said, gold with “moonspots” and blue eyes. She said with such distinctive colouring, no one will be able to sell the goat. She said the baby goat needs its mama’s milk.
“Unless someone was well-versed in raising goats and bought powdered goat milk replacer or something, it’s not going to survive. It’s not weaned. It’s only 12 days old. It needs it till eight weeks. It’s going to have to be force-fed to learn a bottle,” she said. “It’s pretty tough for it to survive without that, or a very experienced goat owner.”
The farm owners say they won’t ask any questions if someone returns the goat to their front pasture.