This afternoon, I was keeping an eye on an Alpine doe named, Lola. After losing Zelda's kids, I am paying more attention. While she was showing signs of early labor, I moved the bottle kids out to their new pen outside. I re bedded the inside stall and by the time I got that done, she was really in labor. I moved her inside the barn to the stall and sat down to wait.
Labor was really dragging and I began to suspect trouble. Goats are generally pretty quick about having kids. Lola had been acting peculiar for about 3 hours before she honestly started showing strong contractions. There really isn't anything that you can do to assist until they begin to try to push the kid out. By then, it is a pretty safe bet that the cervix is dilated.
Lola began to push pretty hard and wasn't making much progress. After a bit, I decided that it was time to check things out. Sure enough, with two fingers, I could feel a solid mass of kid. That is not good. There should be at least one hoof ( preferably two) and nose in the pelvis. It didn't take much to figure out that this was a tail coming first so I had to reach in and find the hind feet and pull him out---- quickly. A breech birth is hard but not impossible as long as you can get both hind feet and do it quickly with out causing damage to the doe. Lola was delighted with her buck kid when I plopped him down at her head. Since she was still lying down, I felt her belly just in front of her udder and could definitely feel another kid--- besides, she was still enormous!
After just a few minutes, she began pushing again. A quick finger check indicated a nose and one hoof. Not ideal but with a little tug, another buck was born. This one was dramatically bigger. Lola began to work on cleaning him up, too. I bumped her belly again and could feel a third kid.
Almost immediately, Lola started pushing. After about 3 pushed with nothing to show for it, I knew we had more trouble. When I reached in, there was a head but not feet. I have known them to be born this way but usually the strain of trying to push the kid out, kills it because it is so slow. It didn't take much effort to find those front legs and slide them up into position. This makes the body more streamlined. This kid was smaller and after getting its feet up and in the canal, I grabbed the head and just eased a lovely little doe kid out.
Lola is an excellent mama and very good milker. When I went back for evening chores, all three were wobbly standing up and had full tummies. Since she had such an ordeal, I will leave her in the stall until tomorrow so that the other curious goats won't intrude on her bonding with the kids. Normally, I don't leave triplets on a doe because it very often causes them to have lopsided udders. I like having the does raise the kids but I sure do hate how wild the doe kids are. Getting first freshening dam raised milkers on the stand is guaranteed to make me blow a gasket.
It won't be long until Inga also has her kids and she is one of the does that refuses to raise her babies. Very heavy milker but absolutely no maternal instinct. I am thinking that I will just go ahead and raise Lola's doe kid along with Inga's.
So, right now, we have one bottle calf and eight goat kids on the bottle or lambar. At least the puppies are weaned! By the way, there are only three pups left and one of those is leaving on Monday.
I realized late this afternoon that today is Friday. I guess I should be excited that the weekend has started but honestly, I can rarely tell one day from the next!! Hope your weekend is wonderful.....