Monday, January 25, 2010

Kidding - Lots of Kids!

Yes, Kidding Season is officially here !!

In the photos below ... you'll see that I have Alpine, Nubian,  and LaMancha  does and one Toggenburg.  Some people ask me about the LaMancha's ears.  One lady asked me why I trimmed their ears?  And a little boy asked his dad "Why does she cut their ears off?"  If you're not familiar with LaMancha's their tiny ears may look funny, but I find them adorable!

Myrtle delivered 3 kids on the 21st. (see the earlier post for the whole story)  Here are a couple of new photos of her kids.  They play, dance and jump all over their pen and all over her!

Myrtle's Kids Playing

Then they crash out for an extended nap!

Myrtle's kids napping

Early on Friday morning the 22nd I checked all the does at 5:30 and all was fine so I came back in to get a little more sleep.  Then Mom went out to check them around 7:00 and rushed back to the house ...  she finally got my attention when I stepped out of the shower to let me know that a doe was in labor in the LaMancha pen! I got out there as soon as I could get dressed and sure enough ... Opal had just delivered a little buck.  The LaMancha girls are not due until next Tuesday the 27th at the very earliest ... the buck wasn't even in the pen to have due dates earlier than that!

Opal's little boy

All the does gave me a break on Saturday ... it was a good thing too!  I only had 6 kidding pens ready and many more does ready to deliver!  I still had 6 kidding pens to get finished!!  So, by the end of Saturday I was finished with the kidding pens.  They all had fresh bedding,  feed and water buckets ... as well as the heat lamps in place.

About the time I had all of this finished ... it looked like Emily was in early labor.  (See the post on Pregnancy Toximia and Ketosis for the whole story about Emily)  She was stretching her back legs and groaning every once in a while.  So I sat with her for a while.  Then I got the sleeping bag out and laid down beside her.  False alarm !!  She eventually got comfortable and went to sleep around 3AM so I came inside to get warm and some sleep!

I sure wish I had gotten more sleep because Sunday was the day they decided was Delivery Day!

I got up around 6:45 to go check on them and found Tina ... who is not due until the 27th ... had just delivered a kid in the middle large doe pen.  I got them moved into a kidding pen ... dried off the little doe and went on to check Valery who had also just kidded.

Tina's doe

Valery had also just had two beautiful kids when I got out to the barn ... one buck and one doe.  They were almost dry when I got there.  I gave them their BoSe and dipped their navel cords in iodine.  I always make sure each kid has nursed and gotten their colostrum before giving them the BoSe.  I gave Valery a shot of Oxitosin to make sure she passed all of her placenta without retaining any of it.  I also gave her a BoSe shot and an oral dose of CalMagCo.  (see the earlier post on Getting the Kidding Kit ready for more details on these)

Valery's kids

Tina looked like she still had a kid inside of her.  I went back to her pen to give her a shot of Oxitosin to help with her contractions.  She did start pushing again and this time had trouble with the kid.  I didn't see the front feet and nose coming, but only the top of the head and one front foot.  This was a new one for me.  I knew I would have to assist her since she was having a very hard time pushing out the top of the head.  I slipped my hand in beside the head... trying to get the nose to come first.  But couldn't get it repositioned.  So, I helped spread her skin when she pushed.  We eventually did get the little buck delivered, but I never did get him to breath.

I gave the little doe her BoSe and dipped her navel cord in iodine after she had her tummy full of momma's colostrum.  I also gave Tina a BoSe shot and an oral dose of CalMagCo. And then they both took a nap!

Nap time

By this time Heather was in pushing labor over in one of the kidding pens.  She had one buck and one doe ... an easy delivery.  Whew!  After the delivery with Tina I was glad Heather delivered so easily!

Heather's Kids

Heather and kids

Before I had time to dip the navel cords in iodine of Heather's kids .... Hazel was in pushing labor!  I would have to come back to finish with Heather's kids.

I grabbed a clean towel and ran over to Hazel's kidding pen just in time to catch the little doe that was just slipping to the ground ... she delivered standing up.  I cleared her face and nose of the mucus and fluid.  As I was drying her off the second kid was born quickly and easily ... a little buck.  I got them dried off .... they nursed and got their BoSe and cord dipped.  I gave Hazel 2cc Oxitosin, BoSe and CalMagCo.

Hazel and Kids

Hazel's kids napping

After I had Hazel's kids taken care of ... I intended to go back to Heather's pen and finish taking care of her kids ... but Chloie had other plans for me!

Chloie started pushing so I stayed with her until she delivered her little doe.

Chloie and kid

After getting Chloie and her little doe taken care of .... I was finally able to get over to Heather and finish taking care of her and her kids!  All of this before noon!  Whew!

Everything settled down enough for me to finally get the morning feeding and chores done.

Dawnnell from Ms Cowboy came over for a visit and to see the kids for a while in the afternoon.  It was a good visit and a good break from kidding!

When I came out to the barn for evening chores and to check on everyone ... Sweet Pea was in early labor.  She is a first freshener and I wanted to be sure she delivered alright ... so I kept an eye on her while I did all the evening feeding and chores.  By the time I was finished, she was pushing.  It was hard for her to have her first doe kid ... but with me helping by pulling on the baby's two front legs ... she finally delivered just fine.  Here's a photo of us all resting just after delivery.

Sweet Pea, me and baby doe resting

By the time I got them taken care of ... it was about midnight.  I was ready for a shower and some sleep!

Then this morning (Monday the 25th) when I got out to the barn, Holly was starting pushing labor, this is her 3rd freshening and had an easy time delivering two beautiful big does! 

Holly and kids

They finally gave me enough of a break to post their photos!  I hope you all enjoy them!


~Tonia said...

Oh yeah!!! They are all so cute!!! Cant wait to see them in person tomorrow!!

Marg said...

Wow Brenda what a busy time you had! I got tired just making trips to the barn and standing there watching you working so hard delivering all those kids, and asking if you needed any help. Seeing the birth of life is such a miracle. Today I still feel a little tired. You did a great job, and I love the photos.

Spring Lake Farm said...

I got tired just reading about it. I'm glad everyone is doing well!

goatgirl said...

That was wonderful. I think that sounds like a perfect day. I especially like the pictures of Tina and her mini-me doeling.

Anonymous said...

Thank you for sharing all the photo's. They are all precious.

Whew, is right you had one busy day on Sunday.

Feral Female said...

What great looking kids! My daughter would FLIP over those white LaMancha`s, as she has a doe who looks exactly like those. Thanks SO much for sharing!

Brenda said...

Thank you to you all! The kids are all doing great. Nellie had 3 baby does last night and Lilah has delivered one buck and one doe so far this morning... she may have another one in there ... maybe not. She looks pregnant even when she's not! I'll get photos of them put on soon.

OurCrazyFarm said...

Congratulations! Thanks for all the great photos! What a busy time you are having, but I am sure you are enjoying it too! Cute, cute babies:))

Linda said...

Wow and how many does do you have yet to kid? You were a very busy girl yesterday!!!

Dalyn (AKA The Queen of Quite Alot) said...


Jenny said...

I've had bunches of people ask what happened to my LaMancha doe's ears. The best being someone who thought the other goats must pick on her and had bitten her ears off!
The little white doe is so cute--well, they all are, really!

Brenda said...

The first round of kidding is almost over ... I'll post more photos of the new kids from Monday and Tuesday's deliveries soon ... Tonia and her girls helped move the kids into the kid nursery in the basement (yes, photos of that soon too!)

25 kids so far in this round. 16 does and 9 bucks!

The're going to give me a little break and the next group will start kidding on the 13th, 14th and 15th of February. That should make for an interesting Valentines weekend!

Linda said...

Brenda, how many does do you have altogether? I think you have posted it, but I don't remember...

Those kids are so very cute! I can't help but notice the difference in how the bottle kids act and the dam raised kids act. The doe raised kids are more, um natural I guess - more like a goat and the bottle babies are more like dogs and find human companionship the best!

Brenda said...

Hi Linda - I have 48 does kidding this spring. My plan is to eventually be at 80 does milking. I'll have to add onto the shelter barn first though!

I agree with your thougths on the differences between the dam raised and bottle raised goats. Since I need to easily handle my dairy does and bucks when they're fully grown, I choose to bottle feed every one of them.

When I first got started, I bought goats from a variety of sources ... some older and some kids. I could tell imediately those that were not bottle raised. It was almost impossable to worm them ... trim their hooves ... and forget about milking them without a major fight! They did not want to be touched!

So, for my own sanity ... we bottle raise our dairy babies. It makes them very gentle and easy to work with.

Your bottle baby is precious! She looks like she would fit right in with the new kids here on my farm :D

Linda said...

With that many does it would be very hard if not impossible to socialize all of the kids. Hand bottle feeding would probably be the only way to socialize them. But how do you hand bottle feed that many? Of course using a bucket with nipples would work also because the kids where I got mine were all friendly.

On a very small scale like mine though, the dam raised kids are very friendly, at least mine are. I don't think I would want to do the bottle feeding again unless it was necessary - it is a lot of work! I feel sorry for my little bottle baby, the other goats don't want nothing to do with her... hopefully, eventually, they will. :D She would fit right into your farm... to bad we live so far away, I will be selling her in a few years after she has a couple litters... lol not sure what to call it other than that!

Brenda said...

LOL! Socializing the kids isn't too much of a problem around here! We love them so much!

Mom helps with the feeding of the kids. We hold them in our lap for their bottle for the first couple of weeks and then usually feed them as they stand up on the fence.

I like knowing that each kid has their fair share of the milk. I'm just not comfortable with the bucket with nipples on it because I can't monitor how much each is eating. This way I can catch one that's not feeling well quickly because they don't eat very well if they don't feel good.

This year I'm only keeping 16 of my best doelings and they will get lots of lovin'. The rest of the babies will go to pre-arranged homes.

I'll keep another 16 baby does next year to reach my goal of 80 milking does. I want to grow the dairy and the cheese business at a pace I can keep up with. Eventually I'll hire help ... I'll have to!

Last year I kept almost all of my little does. I strongly believe in my breeding program. And am growing my heard from the best kids of my best does. That way I know the genetic and milking background of all of them. Bringing a new buck from herds that I know are healthy and heavy milk producers allows me to keep the genetics varied enough to produce healthy babies. I enjoy working with the goats very much!

Linda said...

I was thinking about you today... how do you get pre-arranged homes for THAT many kids??? Inquiring minds would like to know!

Originally (many moons ago) I was going to use my excess for meat, but my dear hubby says no way! (I bet you agree with him ;), but without an outlet having many kids would be very hard to find homes for I would think.

Linda said...

Oh and I forgot to add... hope everything is ok over there! You have your hands full!

Brenda said...

Thank you, Linda. Yes, everything is going okay around here. It's been really busy! I'll have to get the photos posted from the babies born this week.

If it weren't for Mom fixing the bottles and feeding of the kids, I'd never be able to get any rest this time of year. But, she does a great job with them. I help her when I've finished milking. But, by that time, she's almost finished.

I agree with your hubby ... I'd have a really hard time eating any of the kids that we raise here.

There is a large goat, sheep, and cow dairy starting up not too far from where I live. They know the quality of my does and want to build their herd from the work I've put into my breeding program. They've agreed to purchase all of the baby does that I'll sell to them.

Now the little bucks are another story. They're not so easy ...but, I do have someone who will give a good home (as pet brush goats) to any of the little bucks that I don't get sold.

Linda said...

Oh that is perfect! Lucky you! Having someone take your kids and having Mom's help too! If I ever wanted to do hat sort of thing, I'd be all on my own...

I guess that is the idea behind the breeders I got my Nubian from and why they sell them so cheap. They have to go someplace and they can't afford the time nor money to keep them around too long... I'm sure the ones that don't sell go into the meat pen with the boars.

Brenda said...

I am lucky to have Mom helping! It's hard on her sometimes to get the new babies trained to take the bottle, but she really enjoys feeding them when they learn to take the bottle better.

Queen Beth said...

Hello! Thank you for coming by my blog today! I have to say I am a wee bit jealous of your beautiful goats! I cannot convince my hubby to get goats. I look forward to reading you more!!