You are here:

Goats/goat false labor


I'm wondering how common it is for a goat to have a false pregnancy.  My french alpine did this last July and did not give birth to a baby.  She had all the signs of being in imminent labor, mucus discharge, bagged up, even panting and grunting.  No blood ever came.  No dead baby, no bloody discharge.  Now, my lamancha is doing the same thing.  She bagged up Dec 28 and we checked her that night and the next night during the night and no baby.  On the 29th, we went out and she had a big bulge and was crying like the baby was on its way.  My children came out to see the baby being born and it was like she pulled it back inside and stopped her labor.  She had mucus discharge then, but once again, no baby, no dead baby, and no blood of any sort.  I know that was the weekend of the full moon, do you think maybe that causes a goat to go into labor?  We are wondering if we should start milking her.  She looks bagged out, but not all tight and shiny.  Should we get a vet to look at her?  It would be nice to know if she is carrying a dead baby.  Do their bodies just absorb them?  My french alpine is pregnant again and is looking like she will be due in about a week or so.  I've bred dogs for years and know that they can exhibit signs of pregnancy and labor and have no pups.  Is this like that in goats?  
Also, we have been battling mastitis in the french alpine since July.  We dried her off last summer, and she is still swollen and hard with lumps on her right side.  We have tried LA-200 and today/tomorrow products as well as penicillin.  Will she ever produce milk for human consumption on that side again?  She is a pet and we could make her a nurse doe if we had to.  We would like her to heal from the mastitis completely.  I wonder if it is because she never passed a dead fetus last July.  
Thanks for you help.

Are the LaMancha's pelvic ligaments gone? It is certainly possible for goats to have a false pregnancy.  The doe may have been pregnant with a kid inside and then the kid died and she absorbed the fetus but her hormones still make her think she is pregnant.  Did she ever go off feed? Is she up to date on selenium/vitamin D and E.  Did you ever feel kids inside the LaMancha? At 3 months you should be able to feel a kid on the lower right side of the abdomen.  Does the LaMancha still look pregnant? The issue with the possibility of a dead kid is two fold - one is why did it or they die - infection or abnormalities - and the possibility the doe could have an infection from that/still has a dead fetus or fetuses inside.  Is the doe eating and drinking well?  No more discharge?  When you say "big bulge" did this look like a bubble with fluid in it?  

Re the Alpine with mastitis - the usual remedy I advise is 3 cc/ 100 pounds body weight of penicillin twice a day for 7 days along with use of the Today or Tomorrow product at use of 1/2 of the tube to each side of the udder or to the affected side only once and then two days later repeat the intramammary infusion of Today or Tomorrow.  

Did you use the same buck on both these does?  Have either been checked out for Chlamydia? Are both in good lumbar score, that is not thin and not fat?  Selenium/vitamin E and D supplement deficiency can create reproductive issues.   

Hope this helps - let me know - Donna


All Answers

Answers by Expert:

Ask Experts


Donna Ruelas-Semasko/Edelweiss Acres


All goat health care, nutrition, judging questions about all goats - packgoats, dairy goats, pygmy goats, meat goats, fleece goats.


27 years health care/nutrition of all types of goats, 17 years experience in packgoats, 20 years experience in 4H goat projects as leader, superintendent and judge. 20 years experience in putting on goat care/nutrition seminars.

NAPgA, The Evergreen Packgoat Club, 4H, ADGA.

Hobby Farm, many newspapers, 4H newsletters, Packgoat Manuals (youth and general), judging information pamphlets, seminar handouts about health care and nutrition.

4 years of college, ongoing education in goats.

Awards and Honors
Small Farm Award of Thurston County

©2017 All rights reserved.

[an error occurred while processing this directive]