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Happy Tail: Hamlet & Daiquiri, goat & horse animal odd couple

Hamlet the pygmy goat and Daiquiri the quarter horse were Peg's Odd Couple. Hamlet was outstanding at King of the Mountain and Daiquiri became Hamlet's partner in an unending performance of an acrobatic skit that might win the $10,000 prize on America's Funniest Videos. There's a bit of a twist to the story and we won't spoil it. This is a very, very special Happy Tail. (Though all of them are wonderful) - CM
Click on headline for complete Happy Tail. Then to continue reading more Happy Tail columns by Peg Schaeffer, including the next previous ones, scroll beyond the end of this column and links to others will appear. Each time you read another column, that list changes to allow continuous read as far back as you wish.

By Peg Schaeffer

When I was a kid I used to spend the weekends at my Cousin Gus' house. Gus always had goats. His wife, Shirley, would milk them and she used the milk in their coffee. She said it helped her hands from getting dry. His sons always drank the milk and although I turned up my nose at it in the beginning I learned I could drink it if it was cold.

People who came to visit Gus always hated his goats because they would jump on the hood of their car, then the roof, and then back on the hood, and then back on the roof. Their game of King of the Mountain on everyone's vehicle left little hoof prints and one time they even crashed through the roof of Uncle George's Cadillac convertible.

So when my parents bought the farm next door one of the first things I got, beside horses, was a goat. I had a few different goats throughout the years. I had Nubians and an Angora, and a few Togenbergs, but my favorites were the pigmy goats. The pigmy goats were the size of dogs and would follow me everywhere. It was just like having another dog.

Hamlet was a black pygmy goat

Hamlet was a black pygmy goat I got as a goat kid. He was the cutest little guy and trotted after me where ever I went. He'd help me feed the horses and loved to go for rides in the back seat of my convertible. One day I was driving down the road and almost died when I looked in the rear view mirror. Hamlet had butted the dogs out of the back seat and they were balancing on the trunk of the car to avoid his horns. I quickly pulled over to the side of the road and got the dogs into the front seat this time, before any of them got hurt.

Hamlet figured out at an early age how to get onto the roof of the barn. He would jump on the roof of the dog house and then onto the roof of the barn. He loved to race along the roof at top speed. Inside the barn it sounded like thunder with his little hooves pounding. The first few times he did it the horses freaked out. They would race around their stalls in a panic. After a while they figured out it was just that stupid goat and they learned to ignore it.

At the same time as Hamlet, I had Quarter Horse mare named Daiquiri

At the same time I had a Quarter Horse mare named Daiquiri. Daiquiri was a halter horse so she was a solid, stocky mare. She was as wide as she was high. And she was a sweetheart. Nothing bothered her. She and Hamlet became friends. Don't ask me how, but she and Hamlet came up with a neat little game all on their own.

Hamlet would jump onto the roof of the barn and go to the very edge. Daiquiri would back up to the roof and he would leap off the roof onto her back. Since her back was so wide he didn't have any trouble balancing on her butt and she would give him rides around the corral. If she stopped he would butt her mane with his horns and she would start up again. They never tired of the game and became quite the team.

Hamlet was huge help as vet's assistant on doctor's farm calls

One day one of the horses needed stitches so the vet came out. When he got to the barn Hamlet greeted him with me. We went into the barn and the vet starting prepping the horse for her stitches. Hamlet was a big help going through his bag, playing with bandages, needles, whatever interested him. Dr. Reilly looked at me "Peg, get him out of here." So Hamlet was booted out of the barn and I shut the door. A few minutes later you could hear the sound of his hooves on the roof, racing back and forth.

Daiquiri was concerned about the welfare of her equine friend. She kept putting her head over her stall door and nudging Dr. Reilly. So she was locked outside too. She went to the side of the barn, Hamlet jumped on her back, and she stuck her head in the barn window to observe. Hamlet looked over Daiquiri's neck. Dr. Reilly looked up at the pair both watching him intently and laughed "only at Sugarfoot Farm, Peg".

We videoed Hamlet & Daiquiri's games

I was at the hairdresser's one day and I was telling him about Hamlet and Daiquiri. At the time not everyone had video cameras, but Ben did. So he volunteered to video their game and we would send it to America's Funniest Home Videos.

He came over and Hamlet and Daiquiri were proud to show him their little skit. I never had to put a halter on Daiquiri or put Hamlet on the roof. They had come up with this idea between the two of them, I was just an observer. He videotaped it and you could hear his chuckle in the background. You had to see it to believe it.

Agreed that if we wond AFH's $10,000 prize if we won it

We agreed that when we won the $10,000 we would split it. There wasn't a doubt in either of our minds that this was a winner. I received a receipt from America's Funniest Home Videos that they had gotten our video. Week after week I watched and it finally was shown. It didn't win the $10,000 or even $1.00 but it gave Daiquiri and Hamlet their 15 minutes of fame. I would go to the store or a restaurant and someone would say "aren't you the owner of the horseback riding goat?"

Tape still part of Sugarfoot archives, but farm has no VCR to play it

I still have the video but haven't been able to watch it because it's on a VCR tape and who has those anymore? But I still have this photo and I can still hear Ben chuckle as he recorded the duo in action. Who can ask for anything more?

- Peg Schaeffer, President and Founder, Sugarfoot Farm Rescue

Contact us if you would like to help.

Peg Schaeffer, Sugarfoot Farm Rescue,
860 Sparksville Road
Columbia, KY 42728
Home telephone: 270-378-4521
Cell phone: 270-634-4675

This story was posted on 2015-03-15 03:50:21
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Happy Tail: Hamlet the pygmy goat's launch site. I

2015-03-15 - Connecticut - Photo by Peg Schaeffer.
Hamlet the pygmy goat member of the animal odd couple Hamlet & Daiquiri, getting ready to ride. - - Peg Schaeffer

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Happy Tail: Hamlet the pygmy goat's safely lands on Daiquiri - II

2015-03-15 - Connecticut - Photo By Peg Schaeffer.
Hamlet on the landing deck - Daiquiri the Quarterhorse's back. -
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