bottle feeding suggestions

Discussion in 'Goats' started by larellynm, Jul 24, 2005.

  1. larellynm

    larellynm Active Member

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    HI

    I just brought home 3 2 week old kids and I can only get one to take the bottle. I did a quick search and cant find any answers. they were with their mamas until 8 am this morning, and haven't eaten yet, only about 4 ounces or so, most of it went on me. does anyone have any suggestions? thanks
    Larellynm
     
  2. T Lynn

    T Lynn Well-Known Member

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    Keep trying. Make sure that the milk is warm. That is what they are use to. You can later change to cold milk if you want to. You may have to open their mouths and put the bottle in and hold their mouths shout until they get the idea. (Be careful, you do not want the milk to get into their lungs.) I had to do this with a buckling that I got earlier this year. I found that if I put him across my lap that it was easier to hold him and the bottle. It took him 2 days before he would drink the whole bottle at one time and another day before he would take the bottle by himself. You might also try several smaller feedings. Remember that they are use to being able to get a drink of milk from mom when ever they want. Just keep trying, make sure there is water were they can get it, although they might not drink much. You might also offer whatever feed you are going to use, again they will not eat very much of this.

    I did get anothe doeling later (I think she was 4-5 weeks old) that was dam raised. I tried and tried but she never would take a bottle. Nor could I get her to drink milk from a pan. She did ok but is small for her age due to the fact that she just did not get the nutrients that she needed from the milk. I stopped trying with her after about 2 weeks. Learned my lesson, never will get another dam raised unless it is already weaned.
     

  3. JoyKelley

    JoyKelley Well-Known Member

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    stick the bottle in their mouth, lean down to tghem and make a sucking sound with your mouth, sucking air through your teeth. sounds strange but it was the only thing that helped with getting some kids I had to take a bottle after they had nursed thier mom. I think they reacted to the sound of a "sibling" getting some milk and encouraged them not to miss out. good luck
     
  4. Hank - Narita

    Hank - Narita Well-Known Member

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    Do you have another goat in milk you can put them on? Or anything else in milk? Get a human baby bottle. We had good luck with them for our bottle lambs.
     
  5. Laura Workman

    Laura Workman (formerly Laura Jensen) Supporter

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    Here's a thing I wrote when another person was asking about bottle feeding older kids (edited slightly):

    Here's what I do when I have the time and inclination to bottle feed kids. In fact, I just did it with a set of triplets that are about six weeks old because of some damage to the dam's udder. It took four feedings before the kids were sucking down their whole ration in one go. Please be aware, though, that this isn't foolproof. A kid may simply refuse to use a bottle until it starves to death. I've never seen this personally, but my friend had a close call once.

    After the first few days, I separate the kids from their dam at night. In the morning, I milk the doe and feed the milk back to the kids in a bottle. There are a few things you need to know to make this work. First, the milk has to be the right temperature. I bring a bucket of really hot water out to the barn. Before I give the kids the bottle, I warm the milk in the bucket of hot water until it feels warm on the underside of my wrist. Second, the flow in the nipple has got to be right. The best nipples are amber, like for a human baby bottle, or the Pritchard teat (red and yellow). Both of these types have a longish, pointy thing on the end that you trim to adjust flow. The black Nipples will work, too, but aren't as nice. Buy several nipples so when you mess some up, you still have some to work with. Once you get the nipple so it will flow a little bit, fill it up with water, and try to milk the water out. It should flow similar to a regular goat teat. The Pritchard teat is expensive, but is especially nice because it won't allow enough vacuum to develop to cut off the milk flow.

    Sit on something low, or the stall floor. If the milk bottle drips when you turn it upside down, squeeze it before you invert it and let the vacuum stop the flow. You don't want milk pouring down the kid's throat. Gently tuck the kid in between your legs so it can't get away. Soothe the kid until it calms down and accepts being constrained. Open the kid's mouth and put in the nipple. The kid will holler and try to spit it out. Hold his head and keep the nipple in the kid's mouth while he chews and hollers. Until he starts sucking, keep his head horizontal, not tipped up, to reduce the chance of him aspirating milk. You can close his mouth and draw the nipple out to release a few drops of milk so he can get an idea that that's where the milk is. Just keep the nipple in his mouth, unless he starts coughing or shows other signs of having tried to breathe some milk. If the flow is correct, this shouldn't be a big problem, since there will be only small amounts of milk coming out of the nipple. If he just can't get over it and start sucking a little, give him a break after a few minutes and try again later when he's hungrier. With a kid that young, I'd only wait a few hours.
     
  6. larellynm

    larellynm Active Member

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    hey thanks to everyone for the advice! I have been able to get 2 of the kids to eagerly take the bottle but I have a very stubborn girl who still doesn't get it. It is very frusterating! she has been up and down this whole week. today is a down day with lethargy and a temp of 101 now, it was 100 when I fed her and promply wrapped her in a blanket. she is quietly sitting on my lap as I write.... I don''t think she is feeling good. I am not sure what to do. any ideas?
    Larellyn
     
  7. Laura Workman

    Laura Workman (formerly Laura Jensen) Supporter

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    Actually, 101 is a fine temp for a goat. Not sure what the probem is. Can you give more info?
     
  8. larellynm

    larellynm Active Member

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    My little yo-yo is looking fine now. :shrug: still not voluntarily eating, maybe a little lethargic. the internet sites and books that I have all say a goat should have a temp of 103. I am a mother hen and I think I am overreacting to little things but..... what if? I sure would hate to lose the little darling. anyway she and her mates need to have the 2nd overeating (enter what sis :shrug: )shot next week. so that is another worry. I sure am learning a lot from this site!! thanks to all!!
     
  9. jodip

    jodip New Member

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    Hi.
    I know how frustrating it can be. It took me two weeks to get my little pygmy doe to take a bottle. Her mamma would not feed her, but would feed her brother. There were several days I did not think she was going to make it.
    Here is what worked for me: Pritchard nipple (bought at Tractor Supply) with the tip cut off. Warmed milk. At first I used a mix of whole milk, Evap. Milk and Buttermilk, but am now using just whole milk. Also, because I was so sure she was going to die if I didn't get something into her..I syringed milk into her mouth while she sucked on my finger. I don't know if that got her to start sucking on the bottle , but at least she was getting something in her. I did that for about a day or two and then she started sucking on the nipple.
    My little one prefers several small meals throughout the day. She does not take more than 1 1/2 ounces at a time, so she needs at least 3-4 meals a day.
    Good luck!
    Jodi