In the summer of 2012, a neighbor of Carol and Julian's dropped off a nanny goat which had suffered serious complications in the process of giving birth. The owners had unfortunately tried to birth the kid themselves, though they had no idea how to do so. In the process of trying to pull the baby out, they tore the mother's uterus, which is fatal, and sadly, the mother died, leaving behind a tiny goat, less than one day old. Carol and Julian immediately went to work to save the baby, which had not had a drop of mother's milk or colostrum - the special substance which strengthens a baby's immunity and digestion - in her first 23 hours of life. Immediately, they began feeding the baby by a dropper with goat milk from their farm. The baby goat was presenting with a strange tilting of the head to find the dropper, which led Carol and Julian to understand she had been blinded by the amniotic fluid, which permanently damaged her corneas when the mother's uterus ruptured. Furthermore, her lungs were flooded and she was having trouble breathing, and she had developed "joint ill," which is akin to infantile arthritis. Many people would have simply put this goat down, as there were so many grave problems happening concurrently, and the baby was barely hanging onto life.
Carol and Julian went to work administering critical care. They fed the baby a few drops of colostrum and milk every hour, while administering medicine to clear the lungs, and giving intravenous antibiotics for the joint ill. They went along in this way, working with her many hours a day, and very slowly the baby showed more and more signs of life. After two weeks of intensive care, it was clear the goat was going to survive.
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At this point Carol and Julian realized they had to address the blindness. The little goat had become more mobile, but frequently became terrified when she bumped into things. Carol and Julian began gently training her to stop and move around objects when she walked. They also taught her verbal commands like "step down," "step up," "go left" and "go right," in much the same way you might teach commands to a dog. In this way the little goat, though completely blind, learned to navigate through her surroundings. Gradually their patience paid off, and the goat became more mobile and confident. .
Carol and Julian named this very special goat "Hope," because they so fervently hoped she would survive. Though she was on the verge of death several times, she had such a strong will she pulled through. Hope is now a regular fixture at the Hollywood Farmers Market, and she is not shy about showing off her spunky personality. In fact, many people visit Soledad Goats' cheese booth just to give Hope a cuddle as they are going about their shopping! Hope is living proof that when you combine an expert knowledge of animal physiology and proper medicine with plenty of love, an animal can survive almost anything.