Portales resident, pet goat reunited

Freedom New Mexico photo: Karl Terry Robert Villanueva and Margie, his pet goat, sit Wednesday on the deck of Villanueva’s home.

By Liliana Castillo: CNJ staff writer

A Portales resident and his pet goat are back together again.

Robert Villanueva said his nanny goat was missing for three days last week before she was discovered Thursday trapped between Villanueva’s barn and his neighbor’s fence.

Margie usually hangs out on the deck in Villanueva’s back yard.

“I called her name around the yard, but she didn’t make a noise. She usually baa’s but she didn’t,” said the 59-year-old Villanueva, imitating a goat’s bay.

Margie had a little room to walk and some grass to eat, but that was it, Villanueva said.

“I broke down the fence and she leaped out and ran for her water bowl on the deck and she’s been there since,” he said.

Margie was the start of Villanueva’s herd of goats. Recent lung surgery kept Villanueva in Lubbock for a month and a half and in constant health care in Portales for another three months. He said he wouldn’t have time to take care of all the goats, so he sold them.

“But I couldn’t sell Margie. She was my first one. She was wild like a deer when she was a kid, but I started feeding her grain from my hand and she became real tame with me,” he said. “Now she follows me everywhere around the yard. She waits for me when I go check the mail. I try to sneak to check the mail because I have to cross a highway, but she is always behind me.”

Besides paternal affection, Margie follows Villanueva around seeking treats, particularly cookies and candy.