When it comes to kidding season, it can turn life upside down fast. Most often kidding, is a pretty stressful time for any goat parent, whether seasoned or not. Having the correct equipment and medications on-hand will make life easier. No two births are the same. Therefore, different items may be needed depending upon the circumstances.
Photo by Author: A multitude of items.
- A grab and go toolbox is essential in staying organized and prepared during stressful events. Making sure to clean and restock between birthing events is crucial.
- Vitamin B paste is exceptional for both the mom and babies for an extra boost of energy and to increase appetite.
- Selenium Vitamin E paste is provided when a baby is born with weak legs. Though ordinarily unnecessary since routinely wobbly legs for the first few days of a kid's life is not unusual. Often it is caused by the transference of hormones from mother to kid and fades off within a few days. This hormone can also cause droopy ears in kids.
- Molasses is a great addition; it gives the mother a boost of vitality. I add enough molasses to obtain a weak tea color.
- Electrolytes are exceptional to keep in the kit to aid a frail, exhausted, or worn-out doe.
- Nasal Aspirator is utilized to remove mucus from the mouth and nose of kids after birth. It is a fundamental item and should be in all kits.
- Unwaxed dental floss or naval clamp used for tieing off long umbilical cords before trimming.
- Iodine Solution is applied to umbilical cords for the first few days after kidding to prevent infections.
- OB lube is required when intervention becomes unavoidable during the birth process. Never enter a doe dry as it can cause great harm.
- Sterile gloves are fabulous to have on hand when intervention is needed. Ob length is ideal, but any length will work.
- Small sharp scissors are exceptional to have on hand to trim lengthy umbilical cords.
- Thermometers (2) should be kept in the event a doe or kid's temperature is in question.
Remarkable things to have:
- Preparation H is incredible to have on hand when a rough delivery has left a doe with swelling and soreness on her lady parts.
- OB snare is a stock item placed in birthing kits though not readily used or needed.
- Nail clippers are helpful to have handy if you need to trim your nails before aiding in a birth. Always make sure nails are freshly trimmed short before assisting a doe.
- Stethoscopes are great for trying to listen to a babie's heart beat or checking for additional kids.
Photo by Author: Using the Nasal Aspirator
Other items to keep on hand but do not need to be placed in the emergency kit.
- La-200 for potential uterine infections. Most often unneeded for common birthings.
- Multi-use wormer such as Ivermectin sheep drenches for use on the new mother 24 hrs after delivery to help combat worm bloom.
- Ketone strips are used in diagnosing possible (acetoacetic acid/ketosis) in the urine, which can be life-threatening if left untreated.
- Propylene Glycol to treat (acetoacetic acid/ketosis).
- Colostrum for the new baby(ies) if mother rejects, is too weak, or is unable to nurse.
- Baby bottles should be kept on hand for the same reasons listed in the above sentence.
- Goat Mineral is always vital but even more so after birthing has depleted essential vitamins and nutrients.
Photo by Author: It takes a lot of towels to dry a baby.
A well-prepared birthing box will make kidding easier and less hectic. The addition of a bag filled with clean towels is an exceptional bonus to have on hand. A minimum of four or five freshly laundered towels for each kidding is a good rule of thumb. If you are expecting more than two kids, a few extra towels are warranted. Now most important, a bottle of your favorite wine, alcohol, or beer, you just survived another kidding you deserve it! Bask in the glory and awe of the miracle of life for a few moments. Now restock your kit and get ready for the next one.