Sunday, June 2, 2013

A little drama from a piggy's mama

And I don't mean Roxie.  I mean me.  I tell ya, breeding animals can make me a bit crazy at times.  I really thought I was getting better at waiting for babies to arrive but I'm not. 

For the past 3 days Roxie has been needy, following me around very closely and a little too affectionate for my liking.  She's always covered in mud these days so cuddling is messy.  Goats often become more affectionate when their due date nears so I thought maybe Roxie was indeed pregnant.  I never saw her be bred so I didn't have any idea if she was pregnant or not so of course I have no due date.  I don't let this happen with my goats. 

Yesterday when I took her her breakfast she refused to eat.  That's when flags went up.  I knew she was off her game.  She also couldn't walk on one of her rear legs.  My guess was a baby may be sitting on or pinching a nerve.  I was pregnant once - I remember something about this kind of thing but it was oh so long ago I wonder if I'm making things up. 

I spent most of my day getting her area cut and fenced and clean hay put in her house so if she was nearing delivery she'd have a safe area for her babies.  Roxie loved all the attention.  She chatted away to me most of the time unless she was miserable acting like she "might" be in labor.  She had a bit of white sticky discharge.  Sometimes goats have this long before they kid but I had myself convinced it was a sign of labor.  I laid in her house with her because most of her mud was dried and she seemed to want my company.  I wouldn't have done this last year but she and I are much better buds this year and we trust each other a whole lot more.

It rained a little and we listened to the rain on the roof and she eventually fell asleep.  Later that evening I fell asleep sitting with her.   When I knew she wasn't having babies anytime soon I came in the house and Googled signs of labor in a pig.  I found this excellent website which told me how to tell if my pig was pregnant.  As it turns out, a pig has a pregnancy indicator.  Yes, kind of like the little thing that pops out of your turkey (a store-bought turkey - not one of mine) when it's done.  It's supposed to be a sure sign a sow is pregnant.  I wish she had a thing that popped out the day she was due.  Here's how to tell.  Look at this picture.
See that little pointy thing under her tail?  That's the clitoral hood.  I'm allowed to post these kinds of things about animals without getting in trouble.  See how it's pointing up?  That means she's pregnant. That's the pregnancy indicator.  If it was pointing down or even sticking straight out you'd know she's not pregnant.  Well, Roxie's is pointing up, pink and swollen so I feel 90% certain she's pregnant.  Ok, maybe 50% certain.  Her teats are not full of milk but they have begun to change and look much like the above picture. 

I checked on her around 11 PM last night and decided nothing was going to happen soon so I went to bed, fully expecting babies in the morning (even though she wasn't full of milk).  Now that time has passed and I'm using my more non-emotional brain, I wonder why I thought that.  I went out early to check on her and of course there were no babies and she was in her mud pit.  I tried to make her get out but she was very lethargic and couldn't get out of the mud no matter how much I tried convincing her.  I called James, who is out of town to be with his mom who just had surgery.  As if he could help me, I drug him down with my drama.  Eventually she got out of the pit, I hosed her down, she looked at her shed and then walked straight to her pond (different from her mud pit).  I decided she knew best and there was nothing more I could do.........except give her goat milk.  Yeah, that'll fix her.  She hadn't eaten in a day and a half so I was elated to see her enthusiastically guzzle the milk.  It's crazy how I go from depressed (ok, maybe not depressed but in a funk) to elated over something so simple as a pig drinking milk.  She also ate a few handfuls of corn. 

I've checked my notes on my calendar and it seems like she can't possibly be due till this Friday at the earliest.  At least I don't think so.  I'm going to make her a sandwich tonight to be sure she's getting more to eat than just the mud I've seen her sucking on. Her leg seems worse but I don't know what else to do about that.  I don't know why but I'm feeling much better about everything this afternoon. 

To be continued........

1 comment:

  1. Don't forget I am here. If you need anything, yell. Been thinking about you lots. Hope tomorrow is a good day for you two.