Friday, April 16, 2010

Kidding Time

Here at Dancing Dog Dairy, we make every effort to be present at each goat's birth. Firstly, it is easier to pull the kids for bottle feeding sooner than it is to attempt this after the mother has become attached to them. Secondly, although most goats are fully capable of giving birth unassisted, sometimes they just need a little help getting the kids out, and cleaned off.

There are ligaments located on either side of the tail head. As the due date approaches, these loosen and finally disappear about 12 hours prior to kidding.

You can see the sunken triangles on either side of Luna's tail. I knew we would not be waiting much longer.

"Jedi ears" are another sign that kidding is eminent. See how hard she is concentrating?

Next, she paws the ground and lies down to get comfortable.

As she pushes, a sack of amber fluid appears. This helps to fully dialate the cervix.

Soon, the bubble is completely out.

and we can see one hoof and a nose.

I tried to feel for the other hoof, and help the baby get in the right position for easy passage.

Her head came out while one leg was still bent backwards, so I quickly cleaned off her face to make sure she could breathe.

The rest of the kid was born with the next contraction.

I passed her off to my mother so I could focus on the next kid.

The sack around this one was particularly tough. I needed to break it open, to dry her face.

My sister, Olivia, takes them in the house to dry and name them.

Even though they are in the house, I like to tie off their navels and dip them in Iodine. You would think I'm killing her-death by dental floss.

24 hours later, when they have had colostrum and I'm sure they are doing well, we take them outside for a frolic. Both Emmaline and Evangeline are for sale. Just think, these sweet goat kisses could soon be yours.

Monday, March 8, 2010

Showing Dairy Goats

This is a Nigerian Dwarf dairy goat baby. These little goats average 20" in height and give about 1/2 a gallon of milk a day. As you can see, the babies are born with very soft and thick fur. No judge could see their confirmation through all of that hair, so before showing, they must be clipped.
Luna was clipped for show last May. Her hair is not as thick, but she is still pretty furry.

The first thing you need to do is put her on the milk stand, or restrain her in some other way, because chances are, she will not find the process enjoyable. I used a number 10 blade on her body. The pile of hair is quickly accumulating.

Don't forget to trim her hooves if they are long and overgrown like these.

It is very important to practice walking and turning with your doe so she will know what to expect in the show ring.

At the show, quickly position your doe, then try to leave her alone so you do not distract the judge.

Remember, your goat should be the star of this show, not you. Your job is just to help her look her best.

Good luck, and don't forget to clean off a spot on the mantel for all of those trophies!

Thursday, February 11, 2010

Rest in Peace, Jupiter

Yesterday, was one of the worst days we have ever had on the farm. I had stayed up all night checking on Jupiter who was due to kid. The first one she delivered was unresponsive, and her lungs were full of fluid. Fortunately, I was able to rub and shake, and suction most of it out. I put her on antibiotics to keep the rest of the fluid from turning into pneumonia. Once she was brought into the house, she took her bottle well and has proven to be very strong.

Unfortunately, there was a 12 pound buckling behind this beautiful doeling. His head and shoulders were twisted to the side. It was too late to save him, and Jupiter was already going into shock. I brought her in the house, and put a sweat shirt on her to keep her warm.

Despite my efforts to save her, Jupiter died at 10:30 pm on Wednesday February 10th. she spent her last moments in my arms, next to her daughter.Jupiter will be very sorely missed. She is survived by her best friend, Lakeshore Coco Chanel and her longtime beau, Cream of Kansas Instant Karma.

Saturday, January 23, 2010


I wanted to post about some of my recent artwork. This is a horned toad that I made from needle felting wool. It is a cover for a friend's Roomba.
This is a pastel drawing that I made of my buck, Agape Oaks Pegasus

from this photo.This is Arch Acres Hocus Pocus,
and Cream of Kansas Instant Karma,
and a random rooster on our farm.
Contact me if you would like to commission a portrait of your favorite animal.