‘Life-changing experience’ in Rocky’s backyard
SPENDING time with goats put The Caves farmer Svetlana Mitin on the highway to recovery and she wants to use her experience to help others.
After fracturing and dislocating her ankle, and shattering her spine, Svetlana, found herself in one of the most challenging times of her life, but it was nothing a busy kidding season couldn’t fix.
A kidding season is when female goats, does, give birth to kids.
“The goats looked after my mental state and I was left to look after my physical state,” Svetlana said.
Known to “not sit still”, being physically restrained with injury was a tough, but the experience made her realise the positive effect animals had on her mental state.
“I had no time to feel sorry for myself … goats are so needy and at the same time they’re very innocent,” she said.
With physio one of her daily activities on the road to recovery, Svetlana wanted to combine her two forms of therapy and offer goat yoga to the public.
“It doesn’t matter how sad you are, you just feel relaxed with all the goats around,” she said
Participants have the option to bring a yoga mat to the Mitin Grove property and stretch beneath the olive trees with kids and goats to keep them company.
While offering goat yoga was a starting point, after seeing visitors interact with the goats Svetlana knew the farm had more to offer.
After seeing the face of a boy with special needs light up, animal therapy was added to the list of services offered on the two-hectare property.
“It was a life-changing for him and we noticed that,” she said.
“That’s when we decided to share the joy.”
They now invite the public to pat, play and dance with, and bottle-feed the kids in the breeding program.
“We just need to get people informed about the benefits of animal therapy,” she said.
Rockhampton mum Amanda Marshall has attended two sessions with her family.
“It’s so nice to spend time with the goats,” she said.
Once the animal therapy sessions are finished, Svetlana and her husband are hard at work behind the scenes.
The pair also practise intensive farming on the property by tailoring the goats’ diet to generate ultimate outcomes in dairy production.
They are in the process of registering to become official goat milk suppliers, but in the meantime they are focused on sustainability.
The pair use the olive branch trimmings to feed the goats and in turn use the manure compost from the goats to combat soil corrosion on the farm.
Animal therapy sessions are available on Saturday morning by appointment on 0427 028 704.