The kidding season has officially begun on our farm!
I have mentioned a couple times that a doe was keeping us on our toes.
That was Princess Tender, our grade Lamanch/Nubian who always throws twins and kids so fast
we’ve never seen her kid all the way through.
This year we’re guessing she’ll have triplets though, since she’s never been so big, but she’s taking her sweet time about dropping them!
I felt Daisy’s ligaments yesterday morning. My first reaction was, “Girl! Where are your ligaments!”
She was completely loose, but ate a full breakfast and otherwise felt like herself.
But, we put her in a separate stall just in case.
Her due date was the 22nd, and as far as I can remember she’s never kidded early.
She had no discharge or other signs – except maybe her engorged udder.
Daisy is our herd matriarch.
She was our first doe, began her production late, but was a precocious milker,
has steadily given twins or triplets, and milks upwards of a gallon and a half to two gallons a day at her peak.
She’s a grade Lamancha/Nubian, but our best doe by far.
A perfect example of when papers don’t mean much!
As it turned out, when K went down the hill after breakfast to check on Princess, she heard
kids crying from Daisy’s stall.
Daisy had already had two kids on her own, cleaned their noses off and they were crying and wailing.
A doe and a buck.
Daisy’s a wonderful mother, even considering her rocky start with us pulling her first kids off the moment
they were born. Over her last three freshnings she’s mastered her mothering position well – though, even
if Carra will scold me, I insist she is a little clumsy at first.
Maybe its just me. I always think she’s going to step on her babies.
Forty minutes after the first two, K helped her out with the third one.
Another little girl; one almost twice the size of her sister!
But, even in the joys and blessings of this special season, there are times of great sadness too.
Daisy’s little boy was badly deformed. When Carra went down and found them, he wasn’t moving at all.
After working with him some he began to pick up his head a little, but he also began thrashing around, throwing his head back, and never trying to stand, only lying there screaming.
Here’s a picture of the deformity in his nose. He could still breathe, but he would not even try to nurse.
His feet were only partly covered with the hard outer covering of the hoof, and his legs were twisted and would bend out all the way.
We knew when we first saw him that, unless the Lord worked a miracle, there was no hope for him. We had that desire though to try, to try and give him a chance.
But farming is not all a life of roses and romance.
Many times it is downright hard and cruel.
After much prayer and thought, and talking with out vet, we decided to take him down to the clinic and allow him to be put to sleep instead of making him suffer for the next few days trying to get him to eat and his eventually starving to death or dying of a seizure.
This was our first experience with any like this in our goats.
We had a similar situation with a young calf a neighbor gave us once, but its different when its one of your animals you’ve bred, raised through pregnancy, and helped the doe in labor and those first moments after.
But the Lord Jesus knows best. We knew things like this were going to happen
on our farm one day.
I am thankful for this experience.
But also I pray the Lord protects the rest of our girls and their babies who are soon coming.
Coming home we were happy to find the two little girls settling in with Mama Daisy so well.
Its a joy to see little kids once they’re all dry and their legs are stronger as they bounce around in little hops and jumps trying to play or trying to find Mama’s udder so they can have their first meal!
Even Mama goats can do strange things when they have babies!!
This is Carra feeding Daisy a small bottle of colostrum we had milked out in an attempt to feed it to the little boy. Daisy never sucks a bottle, even if our big buck would! Carra took the rest of this milk away after I took the picture, otherwise Daisy would have drank it all! 🙂
This morning the girls are still doing wonderfully.
Daisy herself isn’t feeling 100%, she has a fever of 106.3 and we’ve already been to the vet and back, and given her some Penicillin Banamine (for her temp), and Lutylase (a hormone to help her pass a placenta if she has retained one; we only saw her pass two and we know she had three).
We’re trusting the Lord Jesus though.
She seems to be doing ok every other way and she really loves her little girls.
We’re thankful for these days of kidding and excited to see what other blessings – and even trials – the Lord Jesus has in store for us this season!
We’re watching Princess closely today and its also her sister, Joy’s, due date!