Christmas goes to the goats

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CHAFFEE COUNTY, Co. (KUSA) – If a winter wonderland truly exists, it might just be Chaffee County, Colorado.

“These peaks will just take your breath away,” says Dawn Jump, a resident of Buena Vista. “There’s a saying in Chaffee County, ‘Now this is Colorado,’ and I think there’s a lot to that.”

Even when the wind whips off the many 14,000 foot mountains that tower over town, Jump says there is no other place she would rather live and own her goat farm, Jumpin’ Good Goat dairy.

“It’s a little chilly out here so they’re probably not willing to stand in the wind very long,” Jump says, while watching her goats huddle in their barn.

But Jump, who has raised goats since she was a child, knows one way to coax them from their warm spot.

“Christmas trees are high on their list for a good snack,” Jump explains. “They’re going to strip these trees, recycling and repurposing Christmas trees into goat snacks.”

Jump has owned the farm for ten years, and every year she feeds her goats Christmas trees. She said the past two years the donations from her community have picked up. Jump asked for the trees after Christmas, by placing flyers around Buena Vista and posting on her Facebook page. She said she has fed her goats about 15 trees so far this year.

“I think it’s a little bit sad after Christmas is over, and you’re trying to figure out what to do with the tree, and you’re kinda melancholy anyway,” Jump said. “If you can haul it out here and give it to the goats, it’s just one more way to feel good out Christmas, I think.”

Everything in moderation, Jump said. Though she said her goats have never had any health problems due to consuming Christmas trees, she only gives them to the animals as snacks. And she carefully inspects each tree before giving it to the goats.