Johnson, Pig Place Second In Fort Worth Stock Show and Rodeo

Anh Trinh, Staff Writer

As she tugs on the chain, her goat quickly follows her lead. The shuffle of hooves come to a stop as others line up in the ring. Then the judges start walking by, ready to critique. As her goat repeats the routine they have been practicing for hours, she lets out a sigh of relief.

“As the judges narrowed it down, I was in complete shock when he pointed at me for second place,” junior Kendall Johnson said. “I couldn’t stop smiling because I was so proud of all of the hours I spent working with my goat.”

On Jan. 24, Johnson placed second out of 68 contestants in the Fort Worth Stock Show and Rodeo with her Boer Goat named Pig.

“Most people don’t understand that you actually don’t do tricks,” Johnson said. “Instead, you’re showing off their meat, at least when it comes to goats, but you have to have patience and bond with them. Only then can you teach them to brace and walk with the chain, which takes a lot of patience and time.”

This is Johnson’s second time in the Fort Worth Stock Show.

“I know it’s extremely good to get second since the show is very competitive, but this time I had a better goat than I did last year,” she said.

Johnson visits her animals every day.

“I feed them at 6:30 a.m., and then sometime in the afternoon as well,” she said. “Once they are done eating, I’ll work with them for usually a minimum of 30 minutes, which consists of walking, running and bracing.”

She said spends as much time with her goats as she can.

“I can’t drive yet so my mom takes me to feed them at the barn, in the morning and the night,” she said. “My whole family is very supportive of what I do and they are glad that I enjoy it very much.”

Johnson is a part of the national Future Farmers of America (FFA), which is an organization that helps prepare students to become leaders and promotes agriculture education.

“I started shows when I joined FFA last fall,” she said. “I started taking agriculture classes around the same time at Ben Barber. I knew even before I took the classes that I wanted to show animals.”

Pig, and her other farm animals take up all of Johnson’s time.

“I used to play volleyball and soccer when I was an underclassman, but when I started showing last year, it was so much to do all at once,” she said. “I don’t have time to do many other things, so a job is not a possibility right now.

The livestock require daily care.

“I have to work with my goats every day,” she said. “I constantly teach them to walk and brace in the ring to the best of their ability.”

Animals have always been a part of her life.

“I have had many pets before and even now I do as well,” she said. “I love caring for animals so much because they deserve as much as an amazing life as humans do. They are very intriguing to learn about.”

Junior Katherine McKenzie, also a member of the FFA and the rodeo team, said Johnson is dedicated.

“Kendall works with her animals every day and her work ethic really contributes to her success,” she said. “She is so motivated to be great and she will do well in whatever field she decides to go (in).”

In the future, Johnson plans on becoming an agricultural teacher.

“When I graduate, I’m considering being a state FFA officer a year before I go to college,” she said. “If that doesn’t happen I plan on attending A&M or possibly Tarleton. I will be majoring in animal science or agricultural leadership and development.”

The animals had a lasting impact on her, Johnson said.

“By taking care of these animals, I’ve learned the important lesson of responsibility,” she said. “From showing, I’ve learned how to be patient and that is something I’m so thankful for.”

Johnson said FFA changed her life.

“I am doing this because I love it more than anything I’ve ever done,” she said. “It’s (FFA) an amazing atmosphere to be around. Who I am as a person is mostly because of FFA and it has definitely influenced me for the better.”