Kidding Management: Goats often reproduce in the autumn, when the days start becoming shorter and the females go into heat. Pregnancy typically lasts about five months (or 150 days). Early spring kidding is desired for a greater growth rate, a reduced mortality rate, and comfort for both the animal and the herder. However, if you have the right setup, you may accommodate winter kidding by giving the dos and their young additional care and attention.
Commercial producers must carefully plan their breeding cycles to provide a steady supply of market animals at the highest possible price and highest possible demand. Doelings should weigh at least 65% of their full adult weight before being bred, and all should be in excellent condition before the buck is introduced for breeding.
Following the standard good management practices of giving the animals enough food, water, hay, shelter, bedding, and medical care can help to ensure a healthy and happy kidding season. Hoof care, immunisation, lice, and worm treatment should all be performed 4–6 weeks before kidding.
Progression of birth
Once labour begins, you should leave the doer alone. Within 30 minutes of the water breaking, the baby should be delivered. It is common for a newborn to be born with their head resting on their feet and their front hooves pointed downward. Hooves pointing upward indicate a youngster is in a vulnerable position where they may need help.
Kidding Management is completed in three phases:
- The phase of opening up or relaxation
displays the usual indications of giving birth and may persist for a few hours.
- The ejection stage
On average, labour lasts for half an hour until the mother’s abdominal muscles tighten and push her child or children out. Bluish coloration of the kid’s nose and tongue is a common side effect of delayed evacuation.
- Membrane birth in the foetus
Afterbirths arrive with the last child to be born, and it may take up to eight hours for the whole foetal membrane to be discharged.
Kidding Management: Difficult births
If you require help, adopt aseptic procedures, such as a no jewellery policy. Most, with a few notable exceptions, are easy to fool. Young or inexperienced people often need extra time to complete the process of joking. Most of the time, help is given to correct the position of the child’s legs or neck so that he or she may be delivered in the optimal position. In extreme cases, a caesarean section must be performed with the assistance of a veterinarian. Eliminate any tasks that have a high requirement for help throughout the calving process.
Action after birth: Kidding Management
The umbilical cord should naturally break once the baby is born. Clear the child’s airway and make sure he or she is breathing normally. To prevent the youngster from freezing in the winter, make sure the ears and tail are completely dry. It’s good for bonding, so let the doe kiss the youngster.
A tincture of iodine or other antiseptic may be poured or sprayed over a child’s navel to prevent infection. Make sure the mother’s teats are open and that she has milk after the delivery. Consuming colostrum, the first milk, helps infants develop antibodies. Maximise colostrum intake in the first 12 hours of life: within 3–12 hours of birth, it will have lost 10–20% of its birth weight (Pugh). Colostrum from another dose may be used if the mother doesn’t have enough.
Vaccination and wearing
Children born to vaccinated mothers are protected against pulpy kidney (enterotoxaemia) and tetanus for up to two months after birth. Vaccination against 7 or 8 different diseases should begin at 6 weeks of age. After 6 months, yearly booster shots must be administered. To lessen the time spent caring for the animals and keeping track of immunisation records, a kidding period of no more than four weeks is recommended. All the kids would have developed at the same pace by the time they were ready to start weaning. Weaning should begin between three and four months of age, depending on market strategies and target body weight growth.
A healthy, growing baby results from proper care for the infant. The first step is to get it cleaned up, then give it an opportunity to breastfeed. By removing a small amount of fur from the doe, you may verify whether or not milk is coming from both teats. Within the first hour after delivery, if the baby is weak or not standing, colostrum should be tubed into the infant’s stomach.
Table of Contents
Colostrum from its mother is ideal, but colostrum from others in your herd will suffice. A newborn requires 2 ounces of colostrum during the first 6 hours after delivery and 4 to 6 ounces within the first 24 hours. Because a child’s capacity to absorb immunoglobins declines with time, timeliness is of the essence. Within an hour after birth, if the doe has milk and the child is nursing, it usually does not require any extra feeding.
Conclusion of Kidding Management
In conclusion, it is crucial to be vigilant when the time for joking comes around. It’s helpful to keep track of your heat cycles and/or breeding times. While hand breeding may make accurate record-keeping easier, many farmers find that releasing a buck into the pasture with the do is more cost-effective. Withdrawal, increased bleating, decreased food intake, and a white mucus discharge are all signals that the doe is getting ready to have her young.
Although most do give birth without a hitch, it’s always necessary to be on standby in case of trouble. Babies and infants need colostrum as soon as possible after birth. The first milk a doe produces, known as colostrum, provides immunity. The weaning process for dairy goats normally begins at 2 weeks of age, when the kids are introduced to hay and grain, and is finished by 6–8 weeks of age, either from the mother or bottle. Tattooing for identification purposes, clipping wattles, disbudding, de-scenting, and castrating are all good ideas for weaning.
Producers raising goats for meat might be more lenient with weaning and other procedures. Goat farming is a fascinating and demanding endeavour. (Rathore et al., 2023)Successful people understand the importance of managing their reproductive health.