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Whew, kidding season is over. All five of my pregnant does kidded without incident. Usually, I have some emergency to deal with, but not this year. I did almost lose one kid. I happened to walk in the barn as one of my girls was getting ready to birth her second. She had cleaned up her first all except for the HEAD! Eek! I hurried in there and pulled the sac off it's face. It took one big gasp, but didn't breathe anymore. I don't know how long it was like that. I revived it by hold it upside down and swinging it like I saw my vet do one year, and also rubbing vigorously and trying to clear it's breathing passages. It worked and she's now fine.

BUT, I had a baby with a deformed mouth that couldn't suck. This was my first experience with anything like that. I helped it get on the teat the first time and it really tried, but it just couldn't get a suction. I've always read and it has been my experience that kids won't live more than about 24-48 without nursing. In fact, that the first hour is critical for them to get their first dose of colostrum. So, I was expecting him to pass away fairly quickly and decided to let nature take it's course. Well, this baby was born Saturday night and was still alive yesterday afternoon. He was so pitiful and sad, crying and walking around, but he totally gave up even trying to nurse. I couldn't believe that he lasted that long and it was just killing me watching him suffer. I discovered that he was drinking out of the water bucket, so I tried to get him to drink milk out of a bowl, but he wouldn't do it. Yesterday, I finally had my brother take him away and put him down.

This is the worst thing about farming - making life/death decisions for the animals.

Would any of you goat people have done anything differently? Do you have any insight into what causes the deformity? I've been calling it a cleft palate, but I'm not really sure that's accurate because I didn't feel a "cleft". It's just that his mouth was smaller than normal and his nose was smashed over to the side with just one nostril. His top palate was very thin. The best way to describe what he looked like was a little old man with no teeth, you know, how the lips kind of cave in?

He's from a fantastic Nubian milker dam. But, obviously, even if I'd been able to save him, I wouldn't be able to breed him or sell him and I don't know if he'd be able to eat solid food. I had bought a new Nubian buck this past summer, so this was my first batch of kids from him. I hope it's not something that is in his genes.
 

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Only thing I would have done differently would be to put it down as soon after discovering its deformed mouth and not letting it suffer for a day or two...
I appreciate your opinion. I did have my reasons for not putting it down right away. First of all, I'm too soft hearted and just cannot kill my animals. Secondly, my husband, who would normally have done it for me, just broke his ribs a few days ago and is not supposed to be doing anything. That's why I finally had my brother come get him.
 

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So sorry! I feel your pain. I can't do the deed myself either. If my hubby is out of town, I'll call my son or a neighbor farmer. That being said, not here to judge how you handled it. As far as the cleft goes, I've read different things. My most trusted source says it is heredity. So maybe breeding this Doe with a different buck would lessen that risk of it occurring again.
 

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If the goats were getting full nutrition, not exposed to toxic elements, I would most likely call it a fluke. Was the other twin fine? Birth defects can happen at random, it doesn't necessarily mean it's genetic just he lost the genetic lottery that time.
 

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Whew, kidding season is over. All five of my pregnant does kidded without incident. Usually, I have some emergency to deal with, but not this year. I did almost lose one kid. I happened to walk in the barn as one of my girls was getting ready to birth her second. She had cleaned up her first all except for the HEAD! Eek! I hurried in there and pulled the sac off it's face. It took one big gasp, but didn't breathe anymore. I don't know how long it was like that. I revived it by hold it upside down and swinging it like I saw my vet do one year, and also rubbing vigorously and trying to clear it's breathing passages. It worked and she's now fine.

BUT, I had a baby with a deformed mouth that couldn't suck. This was my first experience with anything like that. I helped it get on the teat the first time and it really tried, but it just couldn't get a suction. I've always read and it has been my experience that kids won't live more than about 24-48 without nursing. In fact, that the first hour is critical for them to get their first dose of colostrum. So, I was expecting him to pass away fairly quickly and decided to let nature take it's course. Well, this baby was born Saturday night and was still alive yesterday afternoon. He was so pitiful and sad, crying and walking around, but he totally gave up even trying to nurse. I couldn't believe that he lasted that long and it was just killing me watching him suffer. I discovered that he was drinking out of the water bucket, so I tried to get him to drink milk out of a bowl, but he wouldn't do it. Yesterday, I finally had my brother take him away and put him down.

This is the worst thing about farming - making life/death decisions for the animals.

Would any of you goat people have done anything differently? Do you have any insight into what causes the deformity? I've been calling it a cleft palate, but I'm not really sure that's accurate because I didn't feel a "cleft". It's just that his mouth was smaller than normal and his nose was smashed over to the side with just one nostril. His top palate was very thin. The best way to describe what he looked like was a little old man with no teeth, you know, how the lips kind of cave in?

He's from a fantastic Nubian milker dam. But, obviously, even if I'd been able to save him, I wouldn't be able to breed him or sell him and I don't know if he'd be able to eat solid food. I had bought a new Nubian buck this past summer, so this was my first batch of kids from him. I hope it's not something that is in his genes.
I had a kid born like this a few years back. It was fascinating and horrifying... mine was more deformed than your descfiotion of yours sounds. There was truly no helping this poor critter. I ended up taking the carcass over to my local college to try to find out why this happened and wasn't able to get an answer. They froze the body for dissection though.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
So sorry! I feel your pain. I can't do the deed myself either. If my hubby is out of town, I'll call my son or a neighbor farmer. That being said, not here to judge how you handled it. As far as the cleft goes, I've read different things. My most trusted source says it is heredity. So maybe breeding this Doe with a different buck would lessen that risk of it occurring again.
My husband read something about that, too. Something about a particular doe and a particular buck's genetics will produce that. If that's the case, I'll be very disappointed. I don't want to search for another buck since I just bought this one last summer. And I don't want two nubian bucks since I do also have a Kinder buck. Ugh.
 

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If the goats were getting full nutrition, not exposed to toxic elements, I would most likely call it a fluke. Was the other twin fine? Birth defects can happen at random, it doesn't necessarily mean it's genetic just he lost the genetic lottery that time.
Yes, all other kids sired by this buck are normal, including the twin. I'm second guessing it because this is a new buck and we never had this with our previous Nubian buck. I'm really hoping for what you said...just a random birth defect. All the mothers were getting the same nutrition and browsing the same pastures they always have so I'm just assuming they didn't get into anything toxic.

Thanks for your reply.
 

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I had a kid born like this a few years back. It was fascinating and horrifying... mine was more deformed than your descfiotion of yours sounds. There was truly no helping this poor critter. I ended up taking the carcass over to my local college to try to find out why this happened and wasn't able to get an answer. They froze the body for dissection though.
Aw. I just hate it when there is something wrong with the kids. I always breath a sigh of relief when all the kidding is done and everyone's healthy. Last year I had a doe kid outside in the cold rain. I have no idea why she didn't go in her shelter. I usually bring the girls into the barn when they get close to their due date. But last year, I miscalculated that particular one and she lost her twins. One was already dead when I found it and the other one was so cold and weak that it never did get enough strength to get up, despite all my efforts.
 

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Aw. I just hate it when there is something wrong with the kids. I always breath a sigh of relief when all the kidding is done and everyone's healthy. Last year I had a doe kid outside in the cold rain. I have no idea why she didn't go in her shelter. I usually bring the girls into the barn when they get close to their due date. But last year, I miscalculated that particular one and she lost her twins. One was already dead when I found it and the other one was so cold and weak that it never did get enough strength to get up, despite all my efforts.
Sorry that happened. It's hard to lose little ones, and even more so when it could have been prevented.
 

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Would any of you goat people have done anything differently? Do you have any insight into what causes the deformity? I've been calling it a cleft palate, but I'm not really sure that's accurate because I didn't feel a "cleft". It's just that his mouth was smaller than normal and his nose was smashed over to the side with just one nostril. His top palate was very thin. The best way to describe what he looked like was a little old man with no teeth, you know, how the lips kind of cave in?
A single nostril?!? There's a condition in people called holoprosencephaly, where the brain's hemispheres do not divide properly, with associated facial defects, and it's usually incompatible with life. Do not Google-image this if you are squeamish.
 

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A single nostril?!? There's a condition in people called holoprosencephaly, where the brain's hemispheres do not divide properly, with associated facial defects, and it's usually incompatible with life. Do not Google-image this if you are squeamish.
Yeah, one nostril on a nose smushed to the side. It couldn't have been the condition you mentioned above because this little guy was strong enough to live for three days, still able to get up and walk around and figure out how to drink out of the water bucket. 😔
 

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Whew, kidding season is over. All five of my pregnant does kidded without incident. Usually, I have some emergency to deal with, but not this year. I did almost lose one kid. I happened to walk in the barn as one of my girls was getting ready to birth her second. She had cleaned up her first all except for the HEAD! Eek! I hurried in there and pulled the sac off it's face. It took one big gasp, but didn't breathe anymore. I don't know how long it was like that. I revived it by hold it upside down and swinging it like I saw my vet do one year, and also rubbing vigorously and trying to clear it's breathing passages. It worked and she's now fine.

BUT, I had a baby with a deformed mouth that couldn't suck. This was my first experience with anything like that. I helped it get on the teat the first time and it really tried, but it just couldn't get a suction. I've always read and it has been my experience that kids won't live more than about 24-48 without nursing. In fact, that the first hour is critical for them to get their first dose of colostrum. So, I was expecting him to pass away fairly quickly and decided to let nature take it's course. Well, this baby was born Saturday night and was still alive yesterday afternoon. He was so pitiful and sad, crying and walking around, but he totally gave up even trying to nurse. I couldn't believe that he lasted that long and it was just killing me watching him suffer. I discovered that he was drinking out of the water bucket, so I tried to get him to drink milk out of a bowl, but he wouldn't do it. Yesterday, I finally had my brother take him away and put him down.

This is the worst thing about farming - making life/death decisions for the animals.

Would any of you goat people have done anything differently? Do you have any insight into what causes the deformity? I've been calling it a cleft palate, but I'm not really sure that's accurate because I didn't feel a "cleft". It's just that his mouth was smaller than normal and his nose was smashed over to the side with just one nostril. His top palate was very thin. The best way to describe what he looked like was a little old man with no teeth, you know, how the lips kind of cave in?

He's from a fantastic Nubian milker dam. But, obviously, even if I'd been able to save him, I wouldn't be able to breed him or sell him and I don't know if he'd be able to eat solid food. I had bought a new Nubian buck this past summer, so this was my first batch of kids from him. I hope it's not something that is in his genes.
You have any photos of the kid?
 

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His one nostril is on the right in the picture. And what looks like a large nostril on the left is actually his mouth. It’s almost like his nostril became his mouth. poor little guy.
 
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