Wednesday, January 21, 2009
Answering Your Questions
After surviving a night temp of 18F the little newborn kid is actually doing very well. She spent the night with her mom Bridie and Bridie made sure her baby stayed next to her and was warm. I went out 3 times during the night and even covered baby with a blanket at one time knowing it wouldn't stay on. I did make sure their stall was draft free, snug and warm. Little one is nursing well, walking around, and acting just like the other kids at Hidden Haven. She is still getting antibiotics each day just to be safe. And little one has a name now. Since it was by the grace of God I found her in time on that snowy morning we decided to name her Snowy Grace. It has been such a busy day here I didn't get a photo of her today but will post one tomorrow to show how well she is doing. As for DiDi's twin boys, one went to a new home today. The other one we named Salem which means at peace. DiDi had a very peaceful labor and delivery this year. One of Sonya's triplets has a new home so she only has 2 now. Its much easier on her to nurse. We named the buckling Marvel and the doeling Faith. With the labor and delivery she had those are perfect names. Someone ask if the goats get mad when I sell their babies. They get upset for a few hours and keep looking for the kid. Sonya makes sure if someone new comes in to look at her kids she is right there so they don't take anymore. DiDi cried for about an hour and then went back to munching hay and is now curled up next to Sonya sleeping. Their kids are close and sleep and play together. Sammi and her triplets are doing well. I will be selling one of her doelings. It will leave her with Frosty and Jan which will make it easier on her to nurse. Diva's twins, Sunshine and Leo are running around playing and even nibbling on hay. And yes, we are through kidding until May unless there is another surprise I don't know about. We try very hard to plan our breeding dates so we know the kidding dates but things happen, goats get out, etc. You just do what you can do. Someone ask about the coffee. Its not given as a shot. I put it in a syringe and give it orally. Make it as warm as you can without getting it too hot for the kid to swallow. Put the syringe in the side of the mouth with the tip on the middle of the tongue. Let a little of the coffee out at a time so they don't choke. This gives them the warmth they need and it also gives them a caffeine boost to their system to jump start it. You can do this with any animal. Just make sure you don't choke them by giving it too fast or too hot. Make it strong and you can even add a little molasses. Now for the question about rumen. The goats stomach has 4 chambers and they are like fermenting vats. You will see goats belch alot.They belch and the food particles come up and they chew what is call cud and swallow it and it goes to the next chamber, then the next, etc. When they aren't burping or passing gas then their rumen isn't working. They get the heat for their body from working their rumen. (chewing their cud). This is dangerous for them if they aren't chewing their cud. They can get chilled, their food isn't digested and just comes out in big clumps of poop. So you need to do something to make them burp and get the rumen working again. Giving them baking soda helps balance the pH in the rumen and keeps the digestive system flowing. By giving them veggie oil or peanut oil (some type of oil with a taste so they know to swallow and not let it go into their lungs) you break the bubbles in their stomach chambers or fermenting vats so they will start burping and passing gas. Also give them some good hay to eat as this will give them much needed fiber. As for knowing when and what to do to help a goat kid. I always try to be with each one when they go into labor. You never know if they will need help or not. Most kids that are lost die at birth because the doe had problems. Either from kid being in wrong position, tangled with other kid inside doe, or lodge and can't pass thru cervix. If your goat is really pushing and no kid or bubble is appearing she is in distress. Glove up, use ob gel to lube the glove and very gently put your hand inside the goat. Make sure the kid is coming feet first. Either front feet and then the head or back feet and then the butt. If the kid is lodge against the cervix, gently push it back and straighten out the feet so it can pass through. If another kid is trying to push its way past the first one, gently push that kid back so first one can come out first. If the kids are tangled together say a prayer, take a deep breath and find one foot and gently trace that foot up to the body it belongs to. Gently find the rest of its legs, etc and untangle it and gently pull as the doe pushes until you have it out. I always clean the mouth, nose and airway of each kid born so it can start breathing right away. I then place in front of the mom so she can clean and bond with it. I will use towels and help clean the kid so mom doesn't use all her energy. I always give the mom warm molasses water and grain after kidding to restore her energy and heat her body has lost during kidding. ALWAYS make sure the newborn kid doesn't get a chill. Even in the summer they can get a chill which is very very hard on them. They may act fine for a day or so then you will find them dead and not know why. Its easy for them to get respiratory infections and very hard for them to fight off. Make sure they are good and dry before you leave them with their mom. Always make sure they have nursed before leaving them with their mom. If its cool or damp put a sweater on the kid to keep it warm. This is a simple way of saving a kid. Make sure if the mom doesn't bite the umbilical cord you cut it down to about an inch and dip it in 7%iodine. This will keep any bacteria from traveling up the cord and will help it dry faster. Goats aren't hard to take care of but do need to be checked on each day. I go out in their pens and just talk to them and see how they are eating, breathing, pooping and peeing. Just by observing you can catch and treat things quickly before they become too serious. For the one that ask if we have anyone helping now the answer is no, not yet. I am doing fairly well by myself. I just am not visiting all your blogs as much as I use to or posting as much as I want. I am enjoying knowing the animals are getting fed and taken care of the way I think is best. And I am really enjoying raking the pens and watching the kids learn how to run and play! I think I have answered all the questions, if not please ask again.