Tales from the Goat Birthing Pen!
Sometimes we don't know what is wrong!
For the LOVE of Pita our baby Boer goat! This is the struggles of being goat parents. It was a hard few days but we are excited to announce this beautiful Boer goat doeling is thriving despite her challenges at birth. We don’t know what happened or why, but thankfully we were dialed into this baby goat and realized something was wrong.
Here is the short version!
- Lilith our experienced Boer Nanny goat gave birth to Pita a beautiful traditional red headed Boer baby doeling and a huge, solid red, Boer buckling who was dead when I found them at 2 am.
- Pita was able to escape the birthing pen at less than an hour old. I found her at 2am, Sunday, 2/9, on the outside of the pen talking to her Boer Nanny.
- We never saw Pita latch and nurse. She tried to nurse Lilith’s chest as soon as I put her back in with her Dam. Her instincts were on point!
- Milked her Boer Mom to get colostrum to feed her and syringe fed her to ensure she got something.
- Temp dropped by 11:30 am Sunday and she was brought in to the farm house be warmed. We got her warmed using a tented towel and blow dryer. Gave her some of Mom's milk via syringe once she was 101.5 degrees.
- Her temperature dropped again and this time I had to bathe her in a garbage bag to get her temp up. Gave her some more goat colostrum when she reached 101.5 and made sure she maintained her temp for a while. I took her back out later to visit with Lilith. She still didn't nurse. As you can imagine Lilith is a wreck which is so heartbreaking!
- Noticed she was laying around at the gate in the sun so I took her in for a temp check. This time she was 99.0% degrees, again warmed her, got her stable and set her up to stay inside for the night. We were up every 2 hours bottle feeding her.
-By her 6 am feeding she was coughing/wheezing. Gave her some OTC antibiotics and waited for the vet to open. I didn't have any strong antibiotics on hand. She got lots of supportive care and antibiotics from the vet. Brought her back home to Cotton Bean Goat Farm and within 20 minutes she crashed, went floppy. Checked her temp, it was good but she wouldn't eat and she was just laying limp in my arms. Gave her molasses numerous times and nothing, just a floppy baby Boer doeling. The hubby called the vet and I ran her out to Lilith hoping she could stimulate her. I held her while she talked to her and licked her. I dropped to my knees and prayed to God while crying. The hubby came out and said the vet was in surgery. I ran back in with her, called the vet back to tell them we were on our way back. I held her and kept telling her to fight to live on the way back to the vet. Every once in a while she would make this awful scream. I call it the death scream. I wasn't even sure she was breathing at times.
- She was alive when we arrived. He said she was hypoglycemic and tube fed her. He taught us to tube feed her which has come in handy a few times during this birthing season. I held her the entire way home not thinking she would make it. We started tube feeding every 2 hours. After the third time we tub fed this newborn baby goat she stood up!
- I got the best text ever from Farmer Jason while I was at my day job, We finally got a pee and a poop! This is by far the best text I have gotten in a very long time. She can now walk in and out of her goat crate without any human help.
- She got to spend some time with Lilith Monday afternoon with human Dad watching closely. She was maintaining her temperature and nursing like a champ! Pita goat is healing.
- We continued to tube feed her but she took 4 ozs and is walking around. She still will NOT bottle feed despite trying every trick in the book. I have also tried to syringe feed her. She is not having that either. She is fighting to NOT have the tube put in which is a good sign. She also gives me these looks at times and I am not sure if she loves me or hates me but I'm okay either way because she is alive!
- I was able to get her on a bottle at her 2 am feeding. Can I get her nurse her Momma Goat? YES!!!! After days of leaving her with her goat Mom during the day we gained the courage to leave her with her overnight. This was a really HUGE step for us as Human Goat parents. Lilith is an experienced Nanny goat and she stepped up, picked up where she left off, just like she was never a sick house goat.
Pita is now 3 months old and close to 50 pounds! We LOVE you Pita Goat!