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Oxytocin and bonding

394 Views 1 Reply 2 Participants Last post by  chamoisee
I have a friend with a doe who had twins but rejected one. He is being bottle-fed mom's milk, and we are trying to get him on her teat but she won't have it. The babies are now four days old, I guess. We haven't tied her up to force the issue, but I did try to restrain her to give him a chance to nurse; problem was, he hadn't figured out the teat thing yet and so kept getting knocked away just when he was getting the idea. Another doe who is still producing milk did allow him to nurse when aided by my friend, so he got a good meal and at least got the experience of eating from the teat.

I know that oxytocin is used primarily to aid birth, but it is apparently also involved in forming bonds and mothering. I'm curious if anyone has used it for this purpose, to either help get a doe to accept a baby, or to help graft a baby on to another doe?
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Oxytocin is produced naturally by the doe when her teats are stimulated. It also causes the uterus to shrink up and contract, which can be painful, which is why some does intially reject their kids nursing even though they then call to the kids and nuzzle them. After contractions hurt like heck.
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