Yesterday I heard quite a ruckus coming from the goat pen. thinking I needed to check them anyhow, I grabbed my coat & the devil dog, and headed out. After putting Gus in his pen, I headed toward the goat pen. Immediately they all started telling me in no uncertain terms of their displeasure in the fact that I was not coming to see them with bucket in hand.
I have been watching one wide-bodied girl for a few weeks now, thinking if she got much bigger she might pop like a tick. We decided a couple of weeks ago that she was for sure carrying twins.
When I got down to the pen, she had just dropped her first baby. Tiny little thing it was. With it being so cold I was worried right away. I ran in the house to grab the camera & headed back down. I was glad to see that she was starting to clean the little thing up.
It was trying so hard to stand up, and I was reminded of tubby struggling out there. You can see, she is still quite wide. She kept walking off, having contractions. At first, she just went a little ways away.
It tried and tried, but just could not get the strength to stand. Just ended up scooting it’s little self across the pen. With every five minutes that passed, I could tell not only by the failed attempts to stand, but also by the feeble little cries it was losing strength fast.
At this point, I could not stand it any longer. My hands were frozen, and I knew that baby had to be completely chilled, what with being covered in afterbirth and all. I watched Momma drop number two, and I could already tell that baby was twice the size of number one. It was time to put the camera down & take action. I ran in the house, put camera in my bag, grabbed a clean towel and headed back out.
By the time I got back out there, Momma had dropped number three in the shelter as well. At first she just took care of number two, who was obviously the strongest of all three. Dusty ran to grab feed to distract the big goats, and I clambered to the top of the gate sitting on my perch waiting for him to get the big goats away. I quickly went out, scooped number one up, and took it back to the shelter.
Once inside the shelter, I could see Momma was only tending number two, three was still completely covered in afterbirth. One was weakening by the minute, but when I roughed it up good, it would cry a faint little bleat, and Momma seemed to be going to tend it. I just wanted her to let them all three eat at least once. They need that first milk from the Momma. Three was not quite as big as two, and one was only about half the size of three.
I stepped back & watched from across the pen, silently willing her to take care of all three.
Within a few minutes two and three were standing and nursing. One was just laying there on the ground. I tried one more time to get one to nurse, but I couldn’t get a cry out of it. At the same time, Momma showed a little interest, so set one down, and stepped back some more. No luck, two and three were just stronger and more demanding of Momma. When Dusty finally said we best bring it in, it’s little nose was in the dirt, I scooped the baby right up and headed to the house.
We needed ingredients to make the rich baby milk, but I was able to get a little bit of whole milk in it’s belly. Then, we headed to Atwood’s to get some colostrum, and to the store for rich baby milk ingredients. I was so worried when we got back it would have just not been strong enough. It obviously wasn’t quite done cooking, it’s little hooves were soft and tore easily. I was literally elated to see that not only was the baby alive, but STANDING! YESSS!
So, that was the excitement on the farm yesterday afternoon