|Born between 6 & 6:30 this morning.|
|Surprise is an excellent mama.|
|They are Kikobains - half Nubian, half Kiko (sired by Hooper)|
|I am so relieved everything is okay.|
|Now comes the all important task |
of learning where to find the milk.
Yesterday afternoon Surprise was just standing near the barn with the spaced-out look she gets when she's in labor. Her due date was March 26 so I figured this was it. I had to so a quick kid shuffle, put Ziggy and her crew in the larger far stall, and Surprise in the nearer kidding stall. I made sure everyone had plenty of clean bedding and then hung around to keep an eye on things.
Several hours later Surprise laid down. There was no discharge and no pushing, so we waited. And waited. The longer we waited, the more disoriented Surprise became. She became unresponsive to my voice and could not stand up. Something was clearly wrong.
The first thing I did was to shoot an email off too the Holistic goats Yahoo group asking for diagnostic and treatment help. Two hours later the message still hadn't shown up and, by that time, I had this horrible feeling that Surprise was dying. I weighed my options but since my vet doesn't do house calls and I couldn't get her into the back of my jeep by myself, I knew I was on my own. A quick internet search of "pregnant doe lethargic" got me what I was looking for.
Surprise's symptoms fit those of pregnant toxemia. The best information is at Molly's Fias Co Farm. I followed her treatment recommendations, starting with 20 cc of molasses/corn syrup every two hours by moutn ( I didn't have Karo but did have organic corn syrup). I also gave her calcium gluconate subcutaneous injections (40 cc total over 4 sites with 10 cc each location). I tried the Nutridrench too, but she really fought me on that one. The next time I went to check on her she was alert and turned her head toward me. Within a couple of hours she was back on her feet and I gave her a vitamin B-complex injection.
It was a relief she was okay but there was still no sign of labor. More research indicated that unborn kids rarely survive pregnancy toxemia so I had to prepare myself for the devastating consequences. Still, I checked on her every several hours during the night. She remained standing and shifting her weight like she does when in labor, but there was nothing more to indicate kids were imminent.
A little after 6 a.m. I got up, started the coffee, and headed back out to the goat shed. There, on the ground, was a live black and white baby! I ran to get Dan and shortly after we got back the second was born. Both doelings! A miracle and a blessing all in one.
I'll do a blog post on pregnancy toxemia soon, explaining what it is and why I think it happened to Surprise. It's something I need to research and understand fully, so I'll pass it all on to you. For now, I need to go admire some brand new baby goats. :)
UPDATE: Sept. 10, 2014 - The promised blog post, "Hypocalcemia & Pregnancy Toxemia in Goats"