TEWKSBURY, Mass. (WBZ NewsRadio) — The owner of three goats in Tewksbury is in a fight for their lives.
Vilmaria Maldonado said her goats — named George Washington, Republican, and Democrat — are in peril after a state agriculture inspector said they were designated "slaughter-only."
The goats came from out of state and the state Department of Agriculture argued that they could be carrying disease, and weren't inspected by a vet — which means they need to be killed.
Maldonado said she did take the goats to the vet, and got them all of their necessary shots. She said she uses the goats as therapy animals through her work at the non-profit Advocates for Authenticity.
"You wouldn't kill your dog or your cat, would you? You wouldn't kill your child, because that's how we feel about it," she said.
Maldonado's goats were a gift from her boyfriend, who bought her the animals when she was recovering from respiratory problems. The goats lived in Maldonado's Lowell apartment when they were small, but became too large and have been moved to her boyfriend's father's farm, Oliveira Farm in Tewksbury.
She was given 72 hours to kill the animals, ending on Monday, but the deadline passed and a visit from state and local animal control on Tuesday proved uneventful.
Maldonado said she wants a fair hearing in court before anything is done to the goats.
WBZ's Karyn Regal (@Karynregal) reports:
WBZ's James Rojas (@JamesRojasWBZ) contributed reporting.
Written by Chaiel Schaffel.