Tuesday, February 25, 2014

Attempting to think positive thinks

So.  What tale of woe, depressing or otherwise horrible story do I have for you today?  Well let me tell you, my avid and loyal blog followers (and also those of you who accidentally clicked on an obscure link that somehow got you here), it just keeps on coming.

But since I hate to sound like such a whiny baby or ingrate for what good things have happened lately (although I have to think really, really hard about what they might be), I'll try to put a more positive spin on my week-long Goat Happenings from Hell.  Try.

Sunshiny Version:  Annette kidded bright and early on Monday morning.  What a beautiful start to the week!

Reality:  Annette decided to give me yet another sleepless night as she started showing early signs of labor around 11pm Sunday night, then started getting down to it at 1am on Monday.

Sunshiny Version: I helped Annette deliver three kids, two of which were doelings!  Yay, Annette!

Reality:  Annette's kids needed repositioning as the first two came head first, but no feet.  Then the third one I had to go in for.  Couldn't tell what was front feet or back feet, seemed really weird.  Noticed some brown, non-typical goo in one of the birth sacks which wasn't a good sign.  Finally pulled a dead, underdeveloped and slightly deformed kid, sex unknown, because I just dumped into the trash bucket.

Sunshiny Version:  Nettie looks to be on the mend.  Her infection seems to be under control. She's drinking more fluids and nibbling on apples and prunes and a few other high-calorie snackies.

Reality:  Nettie may be on the mend, but she looks like hell.  Her udder is trashed.  And although she is voluntarily drinking, I still have to drench her with electrolytes and other goat meds.  She hasn't had any hay and only a few nibbles of alfalfa pellets.

Sunshiny Version:  I let Nettie in the kidding pen with Annette and her kids.  Annette doesn't seem to mind Nettie playing "Auntie Nettie" at all.

Reality:  Can goats get depressed?  Because I reall think that Nettie is.  She still seems to be looking for her kids, softly naa'ing when she hears Pickles or Annette's kids cry.  I feel so badly for her, she just loves being a mother.  I thought about bringing her kids out to her, but I don't want them to get the idea that they can nurse from her.

Sunshiny Version:  Nettie's two surviving bucklings are warm inside, right next to the wood stove. They finished all the colostrum and are now on a goat milk replacer.  Rhiannon is having a ball playing with them in the house.

Reality:  There are goats in the house.  There is goat pee and black, sticky, tar-like goat crap everywhere.  I'm laundering towels like crazy.  And I have to bottle feed them like every three hours.

So, there's your daily update on Nettie & Annette.  I've got more on Pickles & her kids and a slight thinning of the herd.  But right now I'm going to try to take a nap before anybody else needs tended to.


  1. Homesteading is not the romantic notion many seem to think it is. If we went one week without some type of crisis, no matter how small, I wouldn't know what to think.

  2. My daughter told me she feels her goats can get depressed and uses a drop of peppermint oil on their noses.

  3. Bless you for even being able to come up with your Sunshiney Versions! When all of this craziness on Krazo Acres settles down, you are going to need someone to take care of you. When the time feels right, could your mom take Rhiannon for a few days so that at least when you're not doing your multitude of animal chores you could crash on the couch?

  4. I was going to try and not be a basket case this year when Lady kids but these stories are freaking me out :/
    I hope you get some rest. I can't quit thinking about you guys. I was reading your posts to my husband last night. My voice puts him to sleep so I'm pretty sure he didn't hear half of it. I bet Rhiannon loves playing with the babies. She will remember this time when she's older :)
    I remember bottle feeding our Yorkie. I was up every three hours for weeks. I felt like a new mommy and looked like one too. Now the damn mutt likes the hubs better than me, ingrate :/
    Could you give Nettie back her babies after a few days? It sounds like she needs some rest and healing time. Poor girl. I will be praying for her recovery.
    Congratulations on the doelings :) Is this the last kidding? If not hopefully the rest go on without a hitch. Have a good day!

    1. Looked and saw you still have Penny, NewNew and Mamma Goat left. Hopefully they go well.
      Was also reading one of your worming posts. Did the Ivomec work better than the positive pellet? That's what I use and Bub's been coughing/hacking lately. I might need to change it up a bit.

  5. What a mess! I'm glad you got some doelings from Annette. Yes, I do believe animals can get depressed and I'm sure Nettie misses her kids. I'm glad she gets to play auntie.

  6. I am glad that Nettie seems to be on the mend. I'm sure it will be a long road, but you are the best person in the Universe to be driving the bus, so to speak. What are the total doeling/buckling numbers? I know you need bucklings like a hole in the head - can you sell them as bottle babies? Sounds like having 'kids' in the house is about as fun as having Dachshunds (don't get me wrong - I love them); indoor/outdoor, it's all the same. I really do hope things are settling down and you can catch up on some much-needed sleep. Or as much as you can get, bottle feeding every three hours. Sending you a giant hug.

  7. I believe your experiences are the main reason our rams don't get to be near any ewes before the month of November. Each ram has his prison bitch whether if he gets lonely I guess. There will be no babies born here before the end of March and April will be best, thank-you-very-much.

    Each year it does seem we have at least some emergency type feeding/milking/care arrangement to be made though. It's always something. Good luck

  8. Life on the farm.............I do believe goats may be the hardest animals from what I have been reading; followed by sheep. Diary had its moments but not too often. Beef seems to be the easiest so far.

    Dare I ask what will happen with Nettie once she fully recovers? We had a dairy cow that we said could just end her days grazing on the farm...never sold her; never ate her. Some animals just give their all and we have to appreciate them above others.

  9. Personally, I would take her kids out, after they eat and are full, for a visit. She's kidded before, so she knows they went somewhere. Since she's looking for her kids, it might ease her stress. She might eat more if she felt better...

  10. Mama Bear, I am so looking forward to spring....when, most likely, the worst thing I can kill is a tomato plant.

    Kristina, I will try the peppermint oil. Can't hurt. Well, unless she has some freaky allergic reaction and then I find I don't have an epi pen and then she goes into shock, and, and, and.....

    MamaPea, Oh, my Mom has been over helping with Rhiannon (and dishes, and folding laundry, and vacuuming), I don't know what I'd do without her. Probably go even more nuts.

    Kelly, I know that these last few posts have probably put out anybody even thinking about getting goats. But it's honestly never been such a crappy kidding season. The worst I've ever had to do before was pull a leg forward or help pull a bit. I suppose this is just one of those exceptionally sucky years. But I AM very glad that these things happened after several years experience & we were pretty much comfortable with the whole goat kidding and giving meds. If it were to have happend in my first year I probably would have droped dead in the middle of the goat pen. Oh, and actually we have Penny, NewNew, MamaGoat AND Lily to kid!

    Candy, oh yes, I was thrilled to NOT see a little package under Annette's kids.

    Susan, Four bucklings (one dead), three doelings and one unknown (the deformed/dead one...I didn't have the heart to look at the sex, just disposed of it). Thanks for the cyber hugs :)

    PP, I know emergencies are expectetd, but for gawdssakes, this week just sucked. Maybe that means the rest of the year will be smooth sailing. Ha. As if.

    gld, who would have thought that the smallest meat/milk animal would be the biggest pain? Ugh. Nettie will be enjoying her retirement here with us, eating plenty of Cheeze-Its, banana peels and raisins; she's given us so much milk and so many kids that it's the least we can do for her.

    Little Homestead, I've been debating on letting them go outside to see her when the weather turns a little warmer during the day, but I'm trying to sell them as bottle babies (as we don't need/want any bucklings or wethers) and I don't want to "tease" her by letting her see them, then take them away again. She seems to be enjoying Annette's kids and Annette doesn't seem to mind so I hope that will be at least something to make her feel better.

  11. Since Nettie's bucklings are going to be sold anyway, while they are in the house, you might want to try diapers with a hole cut for the tail. Really. My daughters 4-H leader used to diaper the baby goats when she took them to show at the schools. It will cut down on the washing & on the smell.

    I would not take them out to see their mom. They have had colostrum from another goat, and on milk replacer, they will not "smell" like hers. If she is enjoying Annette's kids, I would let it be.

  12. I admire your strength. Seems like most things have a positive and a negative side, if you can do two steps forward, it's easier to handle the one step that you have to take back. You are doing a good job recognizing the positive stuff as early as you are. Hopefully things will get a bit better every day now.