We decided to bring all of our does into the pasture in front of our house to have their kids. Before we could do that, we had to separate all of the yearling does to put back in another pasture. We'd hoped to do this before kidding started but wouldn't you know, one doe kidded the morning of the move. We left her there and rounded up the rest of the group. We have to take them across the road because our "goat" catch pen is on the other side in a different pasture. There's no way we could separate without the smaller pens and gates....those things are a lifesaver!
|Making the trip across the pasture.|
Dillon's grandpa gave him his old four-wheeler around Christmas. He's always happy to hop on that thing and go out to see how he can use it to help around the farm. He brought up the rear of the herd along with our border collies to drive them across the road.
We also moved an LGD, Delilah, into the field with the bred does. She's never been with kids, so we weren't sure how she would do. I knew we'd have to keep our eye on her. We've had some of our female LGD's want to steal the kids from the mamas and try to take care of them as if they were the mama. We've also had some that were immature and like to run and chase kids......neither of which we want.
|Delilah with the first set of twins|
So far she has done very well. She's very gentle with the kids and keeps just enough distance from the does while they are in labor. Shane and I have both been very impressed with her!
We had a young first-timer have triplets. We really do not like triplets, because there are times when one just isn't as thrifty as the other two because it's always fighting to get milk while the most dominant ones are able to nurse. This mama has done a fantastic job. She has a very strong maternal instinct, which is one of the reasons we love kikos! As soon as she had those kids, she started taking care of them like an old pro.
|First-timer with triplets|
Not only is Delilah a very good guardian that's working well with the does and kids, she's very friendly! That silly girl followed me on this particular day and kept flopping down in front of me trying to get me to pay attention to her. I happened to finally look down at her because she was lying so still and this is what I saw. She appeared to be grinning at me. It made me chuckle, so I snapped this shot with my phone.
Of course with the good, there's always got to be some bad. We had a doe, that for whatever reason, decided she didn't really want to raise twins. She had two bucklings and decided to keep one and it appeared that she abandoned the other. One morning I went out to check on her with her kids and I found this little fella freezing cold barely alive. I brought him in and gave him a good hot bath to get his body temp up. We got his temperature up and then I tubed him. I decided our homeschooling at that point would be with a kid bundled up in a heating pad in my lap.
He started to show signs of improvement but still wouldn't nurse the bottle, so he was tubed again. Later, he did manage to drink some warm formula from the bottle, but his health just started declining.
By the end of that day, we already knew in our hearts he wasn't going to make it. We tried very much to get him back to health, but it doesn't always work out that way. We've had positive outcomes and really wanted that for him. It was a sad night for Mallory and me. We'd tried very hard, but he didn't make it.
After all of the strain of the previous day, Dillon and I were out checking on kids. A rain system was moving in and we wanted to see how the new kids were handling the rain. I looked ahead and noticed that his yearling doe had somehow made her way to this pasture with all of the mamas. He asked me for a little help in getting her back to the pasture she was supposed to be in. We decided to take her for a ride on the Kawasaki Mule.
All I could picture was that crazy thing getting her hoof on the gas pedal and taking us for a ride! We've had it happen before and I'll tell you, it gets exciting when someone/something else has the gas pedal pushed to the floor while you're behind the wheel.....especially when it's an animal that's trying to get off. I did manage to capture a shot of us. I told Dillon people driving by would think we were crazy riding around with the goat. Maybe we are a little crazy, who knows? It worked well and got her back to where she belongs!