Goats/newborn goat


QUESTION: I have a newborn just born this morning. She is having trouble drinking from her mother. I milked the mom a little to relieve some of the pressure. She was to full. But the moms utter is to big for the babies mouth. I have it in a bottle. How can I get the baby to drink it. Also I have the moms first born ready to deliver can I use her for the baby untill she gets the hang of it. She's much smaller. Thank you.

ANSWER: Hello - getting a kid goat to take a bottle sometimes can be frustrating but I usually put the kid in between my legs while I am sitting, with the goat kid's face facing away from me, I then use one hand to open the kid goat's mouth and the other hand then is free to put the nipple into the mouth - then I keep a hand around the muzzle, gently, to keep the nipple from slipping out - squeeze a little milk and at the same time pull and push the bottle as if the kid were nursing from its mom - usually within two or three tries the kid gets the idea.  Hope that helps.  Re a doe who is ready to deliver, if the doe will take the new kid goat that is fine, except that that kid will then drink the colostrum that is needed for the kids to be born from that doe.  Hope that helps - Donna

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QUESTION: Hi donna.  One more question. Should I give the mom a tetnus and penicilin. Or just tetnus tonight. And pen tomorrow. And the baby is not taking the bottle at all. It tries to get from the mom. But something is wrong. She won't touch the utter

ANSWER: Why would you want to give the doe tetanus and penicillin?  Do you think the doe is ill?  Is the doe eating and drinking okay?  Let me know on that.  If the doe is not doing well then penicillin is a good idea.  A doe usually is given a (CDT - clostridium C&D and tetanus) booster four weeks before kidding.  Let me know.  Re the kid - it should be hungry by now, and you must keep trying - is the kid goat not sucking?  Has the kid goat pooped?  Would just keep trying every 10 minutes with getting the kid to take the bottle until it finally does, and it will.  I know it can be frustrating, but just keep trying.  When you have your one hand gently closed around the kid goat's mouth with the nipple in it, you can also squeeze the mouth/muzzle gently to act as if the kid goat is sucking, sometimes this helps.  Did the kid goat have a difficult time being born?  Is it standing alright? Let me know - Donna

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QUESTION: The mom hasn't had any shots. I'm on a new property and had 2 goats died suddenly. Every other time I had kids born my vet said to do penicillin. We were going to do shots but thought she would have had her weeks ago. I didn't know how far along she was. Her first baby she wanted nothing to do with it took 2 weeks to get her to feed it. The second time she gave birth the night her mom died. And this time just 1 baby when I went to feen this morning I had a suprize. I'm not sure if she pooped. Their on bedding hay. She moving around good. But has one leg that does not go straight. The mom seems to be cleaning her and being good. Its like the utter is dirty or something. She milk doesn't have a bad smell. Looks right. And as for the shots I don't want her to get sick. So I guess just the tetnus? The mom is eating drinking eating hay. Tomorrow I'm moving them to a stall so they have more room. She gave birth in my feed room. Its a concert floor. And not a lot of light.

Thanks for the info.  What age were the two goats who died suddenly?  It is possible it was from clostridium type C or D, but tetanus only comes through a wound.  Goats should have a CDT toxoid booster (2 cc) every year once they are a year of age and with kids they need 1 cc at 2 weeks, 4 weeks, 2 months, 3 months, 6 months and 9 months of age.  You can certainly give penicillin but if you do you must also give probiotics at the same time to keep the rumen healthy.  In order to get the kid goat to learn to take a bottle, which I advise you do, is to take her away from the mom - I am worried that this kid will not eat at all and then you will lose it.  Always, if a kid goat cannot suck from its mom it should be taken into the house, get used to being handled and calm down and then it will generally take a bottle from you.  You can milk the mom and use her milk to feed the kid goat with.  Hope this helps - let me know - you can always call too if you'd like - 360-742-8310  Donna


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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

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