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Goats/Older doe and kidding

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Question
I bought two Boer does last week. After I get them I find out the younger one had accidently laid on her kid the week before I got her. The older doe, probably 5 or 6 years, is definitely pregnant. They said she has always' delivered twin's with no trouble. They also said she was due anytime. I thought it would be safe coming from someone my son work's with. These are wild goat's. Pasture goat's. Neglected to tell me that. The younger one Gypsy has calmed some. The older pregnant doe Rosie hasn't. I would like to check her better,but can't get that close. I have seen the kid or kid's move. She seem's to be laying down more and eating less. There is a sunken look to her hip and side area. She has a bad leg where a dog got her, so she limp's. Wasn't told that either. Oh well. Do pasture goat's act different when kidding? Do they necessarily have a discharge before going into labor? If I would have had her longer it would be different. I have no idea how she normally act's. She also made a 150 mile trip in a pick-up to get here. Any help will be appreciated. Thanks.

Answer
Hi there - first off, nice of you to take the goats in.  The sunken in on the hips/sides certainly indicates she is close to kidding.  If you could get close enough, testing to see if the pelvic ligaments were still there or not would help indicate how close she really is.  The not eating and laying down more also points to labor fairly soon.  All pregnant goats anywhere from a week to two weeks out from kidding pass their cervical plug, a small amount of cream to whitish sticky substance - about 2 or 3 inches at most in size/length.  Once the doe is truly in labor she will start to drop the 10 to 12 inch string of mucous that starts the hard pushing and kidding.  I would, if at all possible, get this older doe in her own smaller area, so that you can work with her just in case she needs help - and being older it is possible her pelvic bones are not as flexible and that you might need to help pull the kid goats out.  I also would advise immediately taking the kids from her and hand raising them - if at all possible - this makes it easier to handle the kids in the future, of course, if you're going to let the kids go for meat then you don't need to bottle raise.  If she stops eating and does not kid within 8 to 12 hours then that might indicate she has ketosis or hypocalcemia.  Is she just on pasture or pasture and hay, and what type of hay? The extra stress of traveling can also make ketosis come on, or even a pneumonia.  That's another good reason to get her in her own stall/area if at all possible.  Does not sound like that would be easy though.  Hope this helps - let me know - Donna

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Donna Ruelas-Semasko/Edelweiss Acres

Expertise

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

Experience

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.

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

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

Education/Credentials
4 years of college, ongoing education in goats.

Awards and Honors
Small Farm Award of Thurston County

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