Goat Kidding

cheribelle(Z5 IA)December 25, 2005

I have a 1/2 boer 1/2 pygmy doe, looking like she's starting to bag down already. The billy has run with the girls all along, so I really can't count days, just trying to watch the girls for signs. This one is definitly developing a bag, nothing huge or swollen yet, but about the size of a baseball with the teats pronounced. Am I looking at kids soon? Any ideas how long?

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Sounds like a first time kidder? Most does start to bag up 3-4 weeks prior to kidding. Occasionally a doe will bag up the day before, or even make a bag AFTER the kid(s) are born. It just depends on the doe.

If she were mine I'd start prepping her kidding stall on the assumption she will kid in a few weeks. It's always good to put the doe in her kidding stall 2 weeks prior to kidding so she can build up some immunities for the area she will be kidding in. Keep the area clean w/bedding and DRY so coccidia doesn't overcome the area the kids will be born in.

Check her ligaments at the tail base. If your two fingers can be wrapped around the base, she will kid within 24 hours. I don't know how better to describe that, but the ligaments loosen in preparaton for kidding. Since you don't know her due date, I'd do this daily & you'll feel the difference when it's time.

Another indication is when her bag becomes shiny, delivery is not far off.

Hope this helped.


    Bookmark   December 26, 2005 at 6:55PM
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I just had three does kid, for my first time, so I was clueless. The first two, I new was preg. and estimated the time, one developed a bag when she was just three months along, and she looked like she would burst. the last one though I didn't even know was preg. they weren't running with a billy then, but we bought the last one from a friend. She didn't have a bag until a week before, then I didn't know when to expect it, and she woke me up in the middle of the night bawling, and I went out and there was a huge baby, her first i found out.

    Bookmark   January 15, 2006 at 5:13PM
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One of does had two babies this weekend. I didn't expect them for anther month. She was not bagged up at all. Thought I was going to have to bottle feed them. I milked her and she did have some milk. Maybe it her milk will come on down in a day or so.
When I breed my boer billy I am only getting one baby but my Spanish billy usually results in two babies. Any Ideas why? My does are mostly boers

    Bookmark   January 17, 2006 at 9:00AM
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Are the does you breed with the boer billy first time kidders?? I understand that most of the time first timers only have one, and after that they have two or more, however my boer doe had twins her first time! Shocked me, especially since she wasn't very big showing, but her babies were huge!

    Bookmark   January 18, 2006 at 8:17AM
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cheribelle(Z5 IA)

Precious baby billy was born yesterday. First time mommy seemd to be trying, but this morning when I checked she was laying on his cold little body. I am so disappointed. He was sired by my good buck that was killed by dogs. The dogs are gone, the only other billy is a pygmy. None of the rest are showing bags yet. It's been mild weather here, they had a nace warm place in clean straw. I was afraid to do more harm then good if I took him away from her. Now I don't know.

    Bookmark   January 18, 2006 at 8:37AM
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Went to check on my two new borns and mother. I knew i should have taken them off of her and done the bottle thing. The white little male was dead cover with some hay. I gave the female a small bottle of milk to help supplement the mother. She took some of the milk hopefully that will get her through the night and will give her some more bottle later. Momma doe does have milk I guess it was not enough for two.
Learned that lesson and should have gone with my gut instinct to remove them and bottle feed. she has had a baby before and thought she would come around a be a good mom this time.

You maybe right. I think one was a first timer and the other may have had ababy before I bought her.

    Bookmark   January 18, 2006 at 12:08PM
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littlereo(Conklin Mi.)

I'm not an old timer at this, only 4 years doing this kidding thing. Yes, when the ligaments are gone she will kid within 24 hours, and I have always taken the kids away, and bottle feed, just because things like that can and do happen. When they get bigger you can put them back together, ( take them out to see her, and let her smell them and see then) as lohg as she knows that they are hers.

    Bookmark   January 18, 2006 at 4:21PM
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I found it helpful to watch the kids with the mom for at least two hours before letting them alone completely, and keeping them away from other goats too. If the kids have not nursed in the first hour, try milking some and putting it on the teat and on the kid's nose area, this enticed mine to start nursing. If this doesn't work, then I take and bottle feed. I kept a close eye on them for about a week keeping them separate before I turned them out in the field.

    Bookmark   January 18, 2006 at 8:41PM
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What is the vulva supposed to look like after giving birth?
Our doe which we have only had for a few weeks (and didn't know she was pregnant) just delivered a stillborn. We think she is quite young -no older that 12 months-. We have given her antibiotic shots (from the vet) but the vet hasn't been able to check up on her because of bad weather.
We are new at the whole goat thing. We know it is all natural but want to make sure everything is okay.
Her vulva looks swollen and quite red. We are just concerned because she is so small and delivered a relatively large kid.

    Bookmark   January 27, 2008 at 10:42AM
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Does the still born kid look fully developed? You said the kid was relatively large. Big kids are very hard on a first time freshener, especially if she is small to begin with. People with a lot more experience than I have always said not to breed those yearling girls with the big / powerful 4 - 5 year old bucks. I still do not know what that has to do with anything since genetics is genetics whether the buck is 8-months and 140-lbs or 5-yrs and 300-lbs??? Never made sense to me...but hey...they know more than me. Maybe the buck that serviced her was "the big guy?"

If she is up and eating / drinking...I wouldn't worry to much about it. She is going to be missing her kid and be "sad" for a little while...but if she is up and eating...she should be OK.

It takes awhile for the "female parts" to go back to normal. She will also be leaking "slime and blood streams" for a couple days. Remember...it isn't going to look normal...she just had a kid weighing 7 - 12 lbs come out a hole the size of 50-cent piece.


    Bookmark   January 28, 2008 at 2:21PM
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cheribelle you wrote: I was afraid to do more harm then good if I took him away from her. Now I don't know.

Did you suspect something was wrong? Why would you think you should take him away. Even my first timers seem to be OK with raising their own. This is very sad, for everyone breeding now. It would be great if we could all learn from the good and bad of things.

I'm sorry for your loss

    Bookmark   January 28, 2008 at 11:09PM
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I need some advice. I have had 4 fainters for a year and one came up pregnant. She is looking large and feel she may give birth shortly. I plan to set up a seperate pen but past this I don't have a glue. Any ideas anyone is willing to share is much appreciated.

    Bookmark   March 9, 2008 at 11:05AM
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How did you go a year and not be able to tell one of them was a buck??? Miraculous conception...LOL! Check your fences...if you don't have a buck...your neighbor does and he was the culprit.

Sorry...we always pull our does in around a week or so before their due date into a private stall. In the stall have nice clean bedding. What you are looking for is the ligaments around her tail bone will fall away. You will be able to wrap your thumb and finger around it and touch underneath. When you can do this...she will deliver in next 24-hours. She will also start to look "sunken in" on the sides.

Goats have been having babies all by themselves for 1,000's of years. There is about a 90% chance you will have to do nothing; just watch the show.

You will want to have some clean towels to clean the kid(s) if the momma needs some help for some reason. You also want some iodine ready. You will need to dip the belly button to prevent infection.

Some times you might need to help the momma deliver. If the kid is breach or has one leg back...it can be difficult for the momma to push the baby out. A proper presentation is the kid will have it's nose directly in between it's front hooves. They will come out just like they are diving into a pool. If they are not presented properly...you might need to "go in" and reposition the kid. Make sure your hands have been washed with anti-bacteria soap or have on rubber gloves. No matter which...if you assist (go in) you will need to give the goat antibiotics / pen to prevent any infection from your assistance.

If you are in a selienium deficient area...you will want to give the momma and kids a CD&T shot.

If you can...go to library, book store or TLC and pick up a copy of Storey's Guide to Dairy Goats (OR) Storey's Guide to Meat Goats. Both these books have chapters devoted to kidding, babies, etc, etc. I prefer the Dairy Goat one...very reader friendly and the information can be used for all breeds of goats. It is a dark green soft back book.

To prepare though...make sure you have have some milk replacer ready in case something goes airy with the momma.

Good luck and let us know...


    Bookmark   March 9, 2008 at 4:30PM
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Brian, The CD&T is a vaccination. Bosie is what's used for selenium deficient areas. Tom

    Bookmark   March 10, 2008 at 9:45AM
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Hi everyone, I am new here. I just wanted to comment on this post. In my experience, it is not always true that when the ligaments are gone that the doe will kid within 24 hours. I have been raising Nigerian Dwarfs for years, Nubians and Boer Goats for a year and we have had does lose their tail ligaments totally and not kid for a week. I have one now that is due tomorrow and she has had full tight udders and total loss of tail ligaments for over a week now and that is because she is carrying quads. That is frustrating because you have to keep checking all the time. We have a visual monitor and we can see and hear the mamas from the house 24/7 and that makes it easier but still when all the signs are there you do worry a little. She did this last year so I know the drill with her.

I never bottle feed the kids unless I have to but I do spend a few hours with them in the stall after the doe kids to allow bonding and make sure the kids are nursing well first and can find the teat on their own. I believe goats by nature are great moms, but they need to learn. It is our job to help them understand what that new little life really is. So I spend a lot of time in the barn after a kidding. Staying with them for a while also helps to know how strong the kids are, to see if they and mama are bonding.

I have never seen a doe lay on their kid and I have 58 does currently and have had goats for many years. I guess I have been lucky. But Nigerian mamas are much smaller then Boers. We do have heat lamps in every kidding stall, or a very bright light aimed from the top so that mama can see plainly where her kid is at all times. That helps a lot. We have plenty of room for them and the food and water are attached to the kidding stall wall so that the kids cannot get into them and mama does not poop in them.

Good luck to you, I just wanted to tell you that every kidding is not the same. I have just about seen it all here. The best thing I know to do, is to make sure you have a accurate breeding date so that you know just when your doe is realy to kid, then after that date passes you can start to worry, otherwise relax and things usually go just fine.

    Bookmark   March 17, 2008 at 12:42AM
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Tom...you are 100% correct! My fingers typed something other than what my brain was thinking!

tbaden 2008...you are also correct! Not every kidding is the same!

You guys get a STAR for the day...batting a thousand...


    Bookmark   March 17, 2008 at 5:09PM
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well iam new to the boer goat business only been doing it for a 1 yr i have had 3 does kidded but i have this wonderful nannie she is 1yr in a half old she has been in labor all day she pushes for a couple times and quits till 2 or 3 hrs later and starts back up her cervix doesn,t look like its open that much she is strutted on her bag she has had mucus coming out for two weeks now her vagina is pushed out don,t make any sense iam scared for her i don,t want to go in side her if i don,t have too,she is panting, the mucus has coming out right now amber color she isn,t kidding like the others any help she isn,t walking to good either any help i would appricated

    Bookmark   April 29, 2008 at 12:20AM
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Hey tbaden-2008
I just had a pygmy deliver a stillborn and dont know how to help the momma. She is depressed and searching for her baby. She is 4 yrs old and had kidded befor with no problems. I was told she usually has twins but this time only the one. My billy usually throws multiples. Any sugestions on helping her with this? And do i need to worry since she has no one to nurse?

    Bookmark   August 23, 2011 at 9:08AM
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You might want to try to milk her and get the colostrum and freeze it for future problems with kids. We take our babies away when they are born and bottle feed them. The does will cry and look around for a day or so and then they settle down. I always try to give the does lots of one-on-one special attention during that time as mine like to be brushed and petted.

    Bookmark   August 23, 2011 at 11:57AM
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