Post by venadochivo on Apr 11, 2021 20:32:14 GMT -5
Dear Goat Sages,
My doe recently kidded for the second time. Just like last year, she dropped 4 kids, and just like last year, she rejected one of the kids. While she was eating some grain I fed her, I attempted to milk her so that I could ensure that the rejected kid received enough colostrum - this is about 20 hours after the kidding. It was then I discovered that the side of the udder I was attempting to milk was very firm. I was able to get just a few squirts out. Web research led me to attempt massage and hot compresses several times per day. We have seen little effect from our efforts. At most, I can get just a few squirts out of her. Maybe 5-10 decent squirts after and during 30-minute to 1-hour massage/hot compress sessions.
Any thoughts on whether it is worthwhile to continue with our efforts? If we give up, what is likely to happen to the doe?
By the way, two of her kids are on bottle and two are nursing from the healthy side of her udder.
We appreciate any wisdom you might share.
Martin W Romero
Last Edit: Apr 11, 2021 20:37:12 GMT -5 by venadochivo: misspelling
I apologize for the delay in responding. I would not give up on milking the udder but you may want to do some research on mastitis as it is possibly what is going on with your doe. There are many threads on this forum about it that might be good reading and give some ideas of how to help her.
I would feel up underneath her at the top of the bag going backwards, at the front of the bag just before where the udder is on her underneath the belly and at the back top of her bag and look for hard knots or ridges that would indicate a swollen blocked gland as well as possible mastitis. I would give her a sub Q shot of Pen G or Dura-Pen G. If you use the Dura-Pen the dosage is smaller than the other one. It is only 2ml per 150 lbs. I would leave the kids in with her that you plan on leaving in there as my goat Vet told me to do when I had the same problem. That let the kids also work the bag and I went out every few hours and milked out what I could, which at first was nothing, as my doe had cement bag. I alternated sides for the shot of Pen G as told to do for several days. Packed the udder in hot towels but if you have a very large turkey pot that you can put warm water in and get her over top of it that works better because doing the towels is a lot of work and the warm water pot is much better. The shot will help breakdown the infection or congested milk so it can be milked out. My doe had the whole problem because she had stepped on a nail. The infection went up the leg to the bag so I also did Tetanus shots and had her foot soaked in Epsom salts and packed and wrapped in drawing salve. She was in bad shape grinding her teeth, off feed, in pain and had just give me Quads. So I hope you also check your does feet for orange stains that could be a puncture and if so also give the Tetanus shot. Good luck and with Pen G it should be able to be emptied within days. Just a bit every few hours at first as it starts working. Good job getting all the kids their first milk. That is key is saving all of them.
Post by venadochivo on Apr 13, 2021 19:25:17 GMT -5
Thank you for the tips. I will get up in there and feel for those knots and ridges that you mentioned. I took her temperature this morning and she was at 102.3, which I believe is in the normal range. Her udder does not appear swollen at all, and it is not hot to the touch. One side of the udder is soft, and the 2 kids are nursing normally. The hard side of the udder is not swollen. Both halves appear similar in size from behind, and if it were not for having felt the udder, I don't believe I would have detected the "cement bag".
I have continued to try to milk her. It is still just a few squirts at best. If I eventually just leave nature to take its course, will she likely lose the udder? By the way, she is pooping normally as well as drinking plenty of water and eating normally. I released her out to pasture today but will call her in for a massage and hot towels later.
I'll keep you updated. Thanks again for the support.
Is it possible she just has a "meaty" udder and the kids are nursing it before you attempt to milk? Not being hot or swollen are good signs. Maybe it isn't mastitis. Some does can "hold" their milk if they feel you are stealing their kids' food and will simply not let down or release it when you milk them.
I would keep trying and monitor things carefully. Watch the kids to see if they are nursing both sides. As long as they are getting enough to eat and she isn't acting sick or running a fever, I would just keep doing what you are doing.
It helps also if you clean her up before milking with warm water in the udder wash. That tells her brain to let down. Wipes that come out on the roll won't do it for some goats because of the temperature of the wipe. Not being the temp of a kids mouth latching. That releases the hormone to the brain for let down. I also think she could have a meaty udder or possibly she may have been injured at some point. I think though if you continue to milk you will eventually maybe get some stringy milk out. When you see it at the tip of the teat (if you do) just try and pull it out rather than squeeze harder and force it out first. You can get a test kit to test her milk from Jeffer's online. You just slant the card and follow the instructions and within seconds you will know if there is a problem that may need more attention.
Post by venadochivo on Apr 18, 2021 21:31:23 GMT -5
Thanks for all your help. I always look forward to signing on to this forum and learning. We continued with the hot compresses and massage as well as attempting to milk, but our efforts did little if anything. The affected side of the udder has softened some, but it produces no milk. I spoke to a local veterinarian who was not optimistic about the future of this doe. He said that often he will see the other side of the udder begin to act up. He told me to keep an eye on her to make sure she continued to produce from the good side of the udder. So far, so good. Two of her quads are nursing the good side and the other two are being bottle fed.....I had hoped to be out of the bottle feeding business this year, but, alas, we're at it again.
I will post an update in a couple of weeks just in case it's helpful to anyone on the forum.
I'm glad you asked your Vet about your goat just in case you need help if treatment is needed later. I have had goats before that did not bag up real good on one side and what I did was just kept it milked out on the bad side and every few days I would milk it completely, strip and dip it. Maybe a week or two later I would notice it had bagged up a little and I would just keep it milked out. Eventually when the kids weaned and the other side dried up that off side would too. If that off side is really bad it would have green tinted milk, ropey white clots or foul odor then you could be sure that treatment would be needed but it sounds like it had some congestion on that one side. You keeping it milked out could of kept the bacteria levels down before a major problem.
I bottle fed kids before and when I did I had the best success using the Ultra 24 Multi-Species from TSC and adding just a bit more water to the mix. Some of my kids lived inside and wore diapers after they could escape the crate. They stayed in until they wet the diaper so bad that it would weigh down and they could wiggle their hips and just fly out of it. By then I would miss them when it was time to blend into the herd. Now that is the thing people don't talk much about but I will too maybe save you some grief. The herd will pound a kid that was separated and then put in because they don't know enough to not stand beside another doe and a doe may think they are trying to steal a sip off them and some will not mother another doe's kid. Plus their own dams may not accept them as they do not smell like them and have not bonded to them. Your lucky if the kids can hang around the siblings left on the dam and maybe stay out of trouble from the general herd. You have to see how the dam treats them because in some cases they pound or toss them too. So close to the family but protected if need be until they can run and jump pretty good. I would actually take a cloth and rub it all over the Nanna and the other kids left in the barn and get their scent on the rag. Even milk from her and some pee and rub that rag all over those bottle kids being brought back. Starting at the top of the head, under their ears (she will check there) on their chaps by their butt and then all over them. That would make it so they could all be together again and the doe would be Ok with the kid. The kid would know what scent and group to be with. Hope all is well.