I got a call from a friend of mine this afternoon. Her doe was in labor and I had previously said I'd come by to watch and help. We had actually thought she was going to kid three weeks ago as that was the due date according to her first breeding. But she seemed to go back into heat several weeks later so she brought the doe back here for Pan to try again. Apparently the second breeding is the one that stuck.
This was the doe's first pregnancy so I was kind'a anxious to see how things were going. When I got there, there was a nose already presented, but the doe wasn't really pushing in earnest. I didn't see much movement from the kid, but I didn't want to just go right in. It wasn't my doe and I didn't want to seem like a Mrs. Know It All Goatlady. In hindsight, I should have.
After about a half hour of no more real progression, I went in a bit and tried feeling for feet. And didn't find any. The doe was finally starting to really push, but there seemed to be no life in the little nose and tongue sticking out. I waited a little bit longer, hoping for stronger contractions, but ended up going in and searching for the feet. Which were both bent backwards. By this time the head and neck were totally out and there was no sign of life. But regardless of the kid's prognosis, it still had to come out and it wasn't going to happen without assistance. I was able to work both my hands inside the poor doe, hook my index fingers in the armpits of the kid and pulled the feet forward and with another contraction pulled the lifeless body out.
We cleared the nose & mouth, dried & vigorously rubbed it's little body. I even tried to compress it's chest for a while and gave it mouth-to-mouth. Not sure if that hurt or not, but I figured it was worth a try. After about ten solid minutes of massaging and rubbing, we gave up on it. The mother was licking the little body and talking to it, and it was a sad sight. It was a pretty little doeling, all black with a white spot on her forehead. Rhiannon was with and asked what was wrong with the baby. I had to tell her that she was dead. She asked if we were going to take her to the hospital so she could get better. I could have cried. Needless to say it was a sad afternoon for everyone involved.
We had to get back to the house so I told my friend to keep an eye on the goat to make sure that there were no more kids and to watch for the placenta. I just now got off the phone with her and she said the placenta passed shortly after I left and that the doe was doing ok. She milked out the colostrum and saved it in the freezer. Since I had my hands up her back side, I also told her to get a dose of antibiotics in her just to be safe.
Technically, the real reason for having her doe bred was so that my friend would have milk. So the the kid was actually just a "side effect" (yes, I know that sounds horrible), but it's still sad to see a little life ended before it was even born. I guess I jinxed myself. Just a few days ago I was thinking how lucky I was that I've never had a difficult kidding.
Farm life. Not always rainbows and ice cream cones.