Tuesday, February 1, 2011

Daisy's first and possibly last kidding

Unless Daisy grows over the next year she won't be having any more babies.  Last night was a stressful night.  James and I went out to check on Daisy around 7:40.  She was in the beginning stages of labor.  It wasn't long before "the bubble" showed, which is usually exciting but this time there were no feet showing in the bubble.  Her water broke and no baby followed.  I wasn't too concerned yet because it was still early.  During each contraction it never looked like she was pushing very hard.  She never cried out.  I stuck one finger in her when she had a contraction and felt a hoof but it never progressed from there.  It wasn't advancing.  I don't know how much time had passed before I put a few more fingers in and pulled the leg.  I could only find one.  After about one hour of one leg sticking out Daisy was worn out and tightening up.  I could barely get 3 fingers in so I asked my friend, Lauren, if she could try because her hand looked smaller than mine.  No luck.  By now we were pretty sure the baby was dead.  I began pulling on the leg harder than I wanted, afraid I was going to do damage to Daisy but I was running out of options and hope.

James and I had discussed over a month earlier that we would put her down if things got bad so she wouldn't have to suffer.  I don't know how you decide when you get to that point but it kept passing through my mind.  I couldn't give up.  James held her little body tight while I pulled with all my might, and I mean ALL of my strength, till the baby's butt came out.  It was then I finally saw the other rear leg tucked forward.  I pulled it out and then the head.  I was so afraid her uterus would come out too since I pulled so hard and her contraction was so mild.  We were all relieved but Daisy looked beat.  James got her some molasses water which she drank pretty heartily at first then she kind of stared into space.  I went inside to get some banamine for the pain and swelling.  When I came back out she had already passed the placenta.  I'm glad I didn't have to worry about a retained placenta on top of everything else.

Somewhere in all that mess I called our vet's office even though I didn't know what they could do at that late time.  I couldn't reach them.  To make a long story short, they eventually called me after the baby was out and told me to give her penicillin for the next 5 days.  James buried the baby (girl) and I laid in the straw with Daisy for a while then came in the house because there was nothing left to do.  I felt shaky and anxious, too anxious to sleep.  I think I got about 2 hours sleep all night.  I kept replaying the scene in my head over and over again.  I got up at 4:30 and watched TV to take my mind off it.  I didn't check on Daisy till it got light out because I didn't want to disturb anyone and there was nothing I could do anyway.  At 7:00 I walked outside and the goats started screaming at me as they always do.  In all that noise I heard Daisy's very insistent call.   I was never so glad to hear her voice than that moment.  I had her closed in a stall and she wanted to be out.

She's doing really well today except for the swelling.  I gave her and antibiotic and anti inflammatory.  It's going to take time for her to heal but we feel really lucky things turned out as well as they did under the circumstances.  What a tough little cookie she is.  I thought this baby would be tiny.  It was probably twice the size Daisy and her brother were when they were born. 

The next goat isn't due to kid till at least Feb. 28th or later.  I'm glad it's not too soon.  I need to recover from this one.  James told me today he had no idea 24 years ago when we met that this is what we'd be doing.  I don't know how I could have done that last night without him and Lauren there for support.  Thanks again you guys.


  1. I know your pain. My very first kidding had one dead doeling and a live one. It was about like you described this one. I was so desperate! The only way I could pull that dead kid out was because I knew the doe was dying.
    I'm really sorry for what happened. If she heals up quickly, I don't see why you couldn't breed again. It may have been nothing to do with Daisy and everything to do with a breech giant kid. ? Maybe.
    I'm glad you had a friend and James! (Mine was alone in a blizzard with no electric or phone service, on my birthday.)
    You'll feel better soon- I promise!

  2. Oh my gosh, Mollie, that's horrible. Did you cry? Are you making that up? And were you barefoot too? Just kidding. I heard another awful story yesterday about a donkey birth that would have made anyone cry.

    Daisy will have to grow a lot if I'm ever going to breed her again.

  3. I don't know how you did it? I know you just do what you have to do, but how could that not have hurt? It sounded painful reading it, i couldn't imagine being Daisy!
    You're very brave, and I'm sure Daisy is as glad for you as you are for James & Lauren!
    Give Daisy a kiss for me...

  4. Karen you and James are quite possibly the most perfect pair. It seems as though you can do anything together. Hope Daisy is recovering well. Take care. L

  5. Oh, my! Mrs. G says that girls are always the hardest births. I'm kind of anticipating a hard birth with my goat, Echo, since she's so small herself. Glad to hear how you got through it, however, as it gives me confidence that I could do the same.

  6. Oh, Karen, I'm so sorry. What a horrible experience. You are a strong and brave person. This just breaks my heart. I've lost a goat before, she died in my arms. And I'm still not over it. (((hugs)))