Goat yoga is baaa-ck at Lavender Farm this summer, but now with extra cuddles.
Owner Alan Mayfield has been hosting the goat yoga classes for three years, but because of his retirement cut the four classes a week to one.
“It’s fun. The only people who are disappointed are those expecting some kind of zen-like experience,” laughs Mayfield.
“If you’re a sort of Mahatma Gandhi type, you just shake your head and walk away, as there’s baby goats bouncing all over you, which kind of detracts from the state of zen those people strive for.”
Regular visitors will know that the standard of yoga is high, but interaction with wobbly balls of cuddle are part of the experience.
“This year we acknowledged the fact that many of the students who come are not here for the yoga, they’re here for the interaction with the baby goats, so we started goat cuddling classes too.”
For $25 you can have an hour of yoga and 30 minutes of goat cuddling, or you can skip the bendy stuff and go in for just the goat cuddling, for less than half the price.
Yoga takes place Saturdays at 10 a.m., with Goat Cuddling priced at $10 for adults and $5 for kids, happening between 2–4 p.m. Lavender Farm run free private Sunday morning sessions with the children of Victoria Autism.
Mayfield says their season started May 4 and although there was an initial rush to book classes, demand drops for a couple of weeks before the summer break. He advises any yogis preferring a quieter class to book before the summer. The season finishes on Labour Day.
“We schedule the birthing of the babies throughout the summer so we have a steady supply of the little ones, like for example, last night I birthed quadruplets, which was quite amazing.”
Mayfield laughs when asked what people are most curious about.
“The biggest question people have is ‘what happens to the babies at the end of the season?’” he says.
“Two things happen. The particular breed, called the Nigerian Dwarf, is absolutely useless for meat as they’re so small and that’s its saving grace, and they also have the richest milk. So their future lies in cheese production. So the females go to dairy herds where they live out their life, and secondly the males go as farm pets, usually to family farms with children as they’re incredibly socialized by the end of the summer, and come over wanting to be picked up like little toddlers.”
So no lies to children about them going to a nice farm on a hill, when really they’re for the pot?
“It’s nice to have really good, and truthful, answers,” says Mayfield wryly.
To book call (250) 857-2525 or for more information visit facebook.com/goatyogavictoria.