You may remember that we had considered volunteering at The Monkey Farm. I had some second thoughts about that and we never did. However, our neighbors, Francine an Greg volunteer there quite often and that has worked out well for them. Yesterday, Vicki, the Farm owner, e-mailed Francine, telling her that the goat had delivered twins, but she didn't think things were going well. Knowing that we had raised goats for many years she wondered if Bill & I would stop in and take a look.
Of course we would. Last night didn't work out, so early this morning we gave Francine a call... and around 7:30 the four of us headed off to the Farm.
This was the first time Mama Goat had been bred and she wasn't sure she liked being a Mom. Not only that, but she is a first time mom with a set of twins to care for. Often goats will throw only 1 kid the first year, and twins in the years after... sometimes triplets. Anyway, from what we could tell when we arrived there today, Vicki and her crew were doing quite well.. and with a little persuasion so are Buttercup and the twins.
The little buck had been doing poorly, and today, the remains of his scours (diarrhea) needed cleaned off him so he wouldn't get sores. The volunteers had made sure that the kids got Buttercup's colostrum as their first feeding, and even though Buttercup wasn't cooperating, they milked her so she wouldn't get mastitis... and then fed the kids the milk from a bottle. Vicki said the crew fed them every 2-3 hours throughout the night.
Keeping Buttercup's udder from getting too uncomfortable will be important in her allowing the kids to nurse. I expected that someone would have to hold Buttercup to keep her still and keep her from kicking the kid away, and was surprised that she allowed me to hold her horns with one hand and put the little guy up to her teat with the other.... he knew instinctively what to do... grabbed a hold and seemed to get some milk before Buttercup got too restless.
Francine.... holding the little doe
The volunteers are calling this one "Dora", because she's quite active and wanders around exploring everything. You know... Dora the Explorer
That's me... holding the twins...
They've survived the first 24 hours... the most critical time
They bear watching ... that they're eating, that the diarrhea slacks off, and that they're mobile. Buttercup's udder needs to be checked for signs of mastitis.... too hot, lopsided etc.....
Vicki says the vets here in Costa Rica don't do well with goats ... she'd asked about proper feeding etc. Goats really don't eat any and everything. They do like a lot of different things, and your favorite flower bed or young tree would be their first choice. Vicki did worm Buttercup a couple of months ago, and that's good.
Vicki has access to the thrown out foods from 2 local groceries and a local bakery. She feeds it to her pigs and chickens... and I think Buttercup will be getting a treat as well... maybe some veggies or fruit. Just not too much.
When we left she was taking a nap... and the twins were resting alongside her. We hope the crisis is over and all is well.
That's All For Today!