Friday, July 27, 2012

Livestock Concerns of Tooele

As I've spoken with representatives of Tooele City one of the concerns they've voiced is that legalizing goats may open the door for people wanting to legalize other "farm animals".

It's a pretty resonable issue to stare down. What is the difference between goats and sheep? If we were to legalize goats, then would somebody want to legalize sheep next? Or pigs? I've never figured out how to define the difference between goats and sheep effectively. But the fact remains that there is one. If you Google "urban goats" the search returns story after story about people who decided they wanted a goat in their city back yard. However, if you Google "urban sheep" a yarn store tops out the search with a few stories and videos about sheep grazing at a city park, etc. In three pages of Google I could not see one story about somebody trying to keep a sheep in their city back yard.

Of course its pretty commonly known that there are severall small breeds of goats, whereas I had to do some research to know that there are also small breeds of sheep.

My personal experience has been that goats are more friendly. The year after I had to get rid of Ms. Billy I attended the County Fair where there were both goats and sheep. The goats came right over to me and were very friendly. The sheep shied away from me. But its possible that the goats had been around people more since they had been brought specifically for the petting area. Whereas the sheep were in completition.

I'd love feedback on this. It would help me define more clearly the difference between goats and sheep. Any thoughts on on why goats are more popular as a backyard than sheep? Or pig? You hear about people keeping pot belly pigs as pets. Where do you think that fits?

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