Lake Martin island goats threatened by dog attacks | New
Lake Martin Goat Island, an Alabama Power property that has become a tourist attraction, is threatened by dog attacks on its goat population.
The open-use island is frequented by Lake Martin boaters for the novelty of its free-range goats, which are brought there to graze each summer by several local goat owners, including Ricky and Stacie Baker. According to the Bakers’ Facebook page, last week, a visitor’s dog attacked Rosie the goat and chased her through the water, before Rosie was rescued by two other boaters from drowning.
“Rosie is fine but she is very tired and has several dog bite marks on her face and a bite mark on her chest,” the Bakers said on Facebook. “All the wounds were cleaned up and medicine (was) put on them. I will not continue to allow them to be hurt.
“These goats bring so much fun to the lake community, but you always have a handful of them who laugh and will ruin it for everyone. We work really hard to keep them safe and healthy. thank the two guys who dove after Rosie and saved her from drowning after being (run) into the water by the dog. “
The Alabama Law Enforcement Agency (ALEA) issued a public statement on Sunday reiterating that the island is for open use and can be accessed by any member of the public. Despite the “Please Keep Dogs Away From Goats” signs, Alabama Power does not prevent visitors from bringing pets off leash.
“Law enforcement cannot quote or arrest people for allowing their dogs on the island,” ALEA said. “We ask boaters to follow suggested signs and keep their dogs away from goats, but we also ask people to refrain from confronting each other in a hostile, verbally or physically threatening manner – as these actions may be illegal and may bring charges against the parties involved. “
Ricky and Stacie Baker also followed up with another Facebook post on Sunday.
“We’re doing our best to find a way to protect (the goats) and everyone else because we don’t want this tradition to end, but I’m not sure if that will be possible,” the Bakers wrote. “(We) will not continue to let them be in danger. We will try to find something in the next few days, or they will leave the island.”
The Bakers said Rosie’s medication was covered by the money they raised from selling Goat Island t-shirts.