I need a Dairy Goat 101 pregnancy

Discussion in 'Dairy Goat Info' started by GoatsforGuatemala, Feb 7, 2014.

  1. GoatsforGuatemala

    GoatsforGuatemala Junior Member

    I'm new to goats. I am preparing to breed my Nubian doe this month. Now I have several years of experience with both dairy and beef cattle.
    I have several questions that I hope some veterans will answer.

    1. Usually cattle are prenancy tested using the palpation method by a
    a vet or the herdsman. How is pregnancy testing done on does?

    2. With cattle their are vaccines to the cow at very time during pregnancy that innoculates the soon to be born calf. And, their are also vaccines and vitamin supplements to give to new borns immediately via needle and nostrils. What is required or recommended for freshening does and new kids?

    3. Also, with dairy cattle, the new calf taken from mom within hours of birth.
    Colostrum is taken from mom and bottle fed to the new born calf. As soon as mom's colostrum returns to milk she is put back on the milk line. In the case of a first calf heifer, rather than feeding her colostrum, we feed colostrum from an older dam that has been frozen, because it contains more nutrients. How is this process different with goat does and kids?

    4. One last question. I think that I know the answer, but I"ll ask anyhow so I have not surprises. When a cow has twins of opposite gender, often the female of the pair is sterile. Is that true of goats
  2. Hello fellow sinner and welcome to the forum!

    One point you didn't supply info on was whether you had your doe tested for CAE prior to purchase (or at all for that matter). The reason I mention this has to do primarily with your line item #3. We do the same as you do with cattle but, if you haven't had your doe tested for CAE, it will be necessary to pasteurize both colostrum and milk for all feedings until the kids are weaned onto solid feeds. CAE is transmitted in the does milk to the young ones and the prevalence of CAE in North America is quite high (I understand that it is in excess of 50% but that may be a local number. )

    There are pregnancy tests which you can perform either with blood samples sent to labs (see threads on BioTracking) for the ultimate proof, or you can use a device like ultrasound that listens for multiple heartbeats (at least I think that's how it works)... I keep two bucks, so testing is a moot point since they never miss a 'trick'.

    The vaccines we give pre-kidding (Barvac CD/T and Lysigin) do carry over into the kids and the CD/T helps to protect the kids for the first few weeks until they are inoculated individually. Since we disbud the kids after about ten days, we depend upon the Tetanus part of the CD/T for protection until they are old enough for their own shot.

    Finally, no, I don't believe multiple goat kids promotes free martins since goats typically freshen with between one and (occasionally) five kids and rarely do we hear of naturally sterile animals (usually a mineral deficiency) or true hermaphrodites or pseudohermaphrodytes.

    Once again.... welcome!!!

  3. GoatsforGuatemala

    GoatsforGuatemala Junior Member

    Thank you, Allan. I didn't have CAE testing done before I bought. Actually I hadn't heard anything about CAE until I got on this forum. I posted a separate thread also yesterday asking questions about CAE. I probably need to learn even more from a vet or college. This adventure is a learning project for me to transfer this information for use at our orphanage in Guatemala. It is located in the mountainous area, several hours away from human medical help, so I imagine that help from a vet is rare. I am also looking for the most inexpensive means of feeding a dairy doe while getting the most out of her. In Guatemala, a doe would be tethered and allowed to forage mostly as farmable land is scarce and being on steep slope, the best equipment for farming is a hoe.

    Here in Michigan we live on 40 farmable acres so food is easy. Like you we strive for self sufficiency. We have cattle for us and to sell, chickens 2 breeds, one for meat and one for eggs, and geese and ducks which are leftovers from grandkids 4H projects. Then of course we have the goats, only 3 now, a doe, a young buck, and a wether ready for slaughter. We also maintain a large garden for growing most of the foods that we eat, including dry beans (pinto, red, and black).

    Last edited: Feb 8, 2014
  4. jdavenport

    jdavenport Member

    In the tropics, slatted floors are used a lot. They help keep the animals worm burdens low, use less bedding, or none, and have great ventilation. The only drawback is you have to bring every bit of food to the goats. Here's a discussion of how to build a slatted floor; https://www.dairygoatinfo.com/f19/flooring-goats-30407/

    This conversation might also help in your search for information that would transfer down to Guatemala: https://www.dairygoatinfo.com/f19/building-reference-library-dgi-28857/

    Having a book like this: http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/18..._m=ATVPDKIKX0DER&pf_rd_r=16DATC1BKE3QA8GM3Z4K
    would also be a wise investment.

    Good Luck!