When Contractions Stop

Discussion in 'Goats' started by mary,tx, Dec 18, 2004.

  1. mary,tx

    mary,tx Well-Known Member Supporter

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    Keisha kidded late Monday night after what I might best describe as the most casual labor I have ever witnessed. She was showing the tell-tale thick mucous string by sundown, but did not have pushing contractions until about 11pm.

    When I went out, I found that front hooves were out, and head facing forward, still in the sac. At this point, contractions seemed to stop, and she was in no distress, up munching hay, etc. She finally had pushing contractions again at 11:45, and delivered a huge buck without incident.

    Since she has always twinned, I sat in the freezing barn watching her until 1am.
    During this time, she was up, licking the kid, drinking, munching on hay. She was very casual and did not appear to have additional contractions. So after waiting that extra hour and fifteen minutes, I gave up and went back to bed.
    (I'm sure I've never had a doe go more than 30 minutes between kids, and usually they come immediately.)

    Next morning, a big pretty doeling had joined the group. Afterbirth had also been delivered.

    I did not want to call a vet out for a doe obviously in no distress, but couldn't help worry about the extension of time. How would you have treated this? Is there something I might have or should have given her to speed up contractions? And if so, what, and how much?
    (Mom and kids are doing great.)

    Thanks.
    mary
     
  2. mpillow

    mpillow Well-Known Member Supporter

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    Has she kidded in your presence before? Mine always do for some reason but she may have wanted her privacy?
    Congrats and glad they are all healthy!
     

  3. mary,tx

    mary,tx Well-Known Member Supporter

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    No, not Keisha. She definitely does want me to be there, and if she had still been having contractions, would have let me know about it when I left.
     
  4. Stacy Adams

    Stacy Adams Well-Known Member

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    I have no idea about the contraction timing.. mine are pretty quick at poppin 'em out once things get going.. but I did want to say "congratulations!!" on your new babies :)
     
  5. Sondra Peterson

    Sondra Peterson Well-Known Member

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    CONGRATULATIONS!! sounds like everything went ok even tho you weren't there for everything. I am interested in the comments you will recieve on this one abt the contractions as I don't have a clue to the answer either.
     
  6. Galloping Goats

    Galloping Goats Active Member

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    My kid's 4-H leader had a long time span between births last year. I can't remember how long but it was looong. I guess nature did fine though. Glad your goats are healthy.
     
  7. Cara

    Cara Well-Known Member

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    One of my does always has long gaps between kids...one of the others doesn't even wait until the cord is broken on one before she starts in on the next. It's just maybe an individual body thing?
     
  8. Vicki McGaugh TX Nubians

    Vicki McGaugh TX Nubians Well-Known Member

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    I just simply don't allow the does to kid like this. I would have made her lie down with this first buckling, gentle pulling pressure especially with your fingers inside the vagina will give her contractions, and get the buck out. If I am busy or a doe has had what I consider not a normal amount of kids and a perfectly presented beginnings of her placenta, or if It's 1 am :) than I simply wash up, insert my fingers/hand/wrist into the doe and check both horns of the uterus for kids. This would have told me that she indeed did have the twin up in the other horn that she normally has, and bringing it forward carefully into the birth canal would have delivered the kid with me right there in case there was a problem. The placenta would have been seen, instead of lost and smelling up the bedding or eaten by the doe and you don't know if she has even passed it, the kid would have nursed, the doe tended to, either a few squirts of colostrum out of each side to make sure the kids are getting fed, or me bottle feeding, and I would have been snug back in bed before 1 am :)

    Look at the size of the kid compared to your hand and forearm, cleanly you certaily are going to do harm by going in and checking...honestly by not checking you could have came out to a dead kid in the barn instead of this happy event.

    Congrats, on a doeling and don't forget to worm the doe. Vicki
     
  9. susanne

    susanne Nubian dairy goat breeder

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    do you mean it is easy to go with you hand into the doe and check if some kids are still in there? so there is never guessing if another kid is coming? what about risk of infection? i read somewhere that you have to put medication in the uterus to prevent infections
    i'm already start sweating by thinking of the first kidding i will see. luckily it is an older doe and hopefully she nows what she is doing.
    susanne
     
  10. Tracy in Idaho

    Tracy in Idaho Well-Known Member Supporter

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    I missed this one the first time around. I lost one of triplets last year by allowing a doe to labor too long. My own fault, and one I won't repeat. It was wedged in there with its head turned back, and there was no way on earth she could have gotten it out unassisted. Luckily for me, there were 2 more live ones behind it.
    I think about 15 minutes of pushing with no feet coming means time to go looking.

    I never put meds in the uterus after going in with a clean hand. Heck, look at all the crap the afterbirth can suck up in there before it cleans out. Didn't I read somewhere Vicki, that they found the uterine boluses weren't good to use in goats? I think they're recommending a diluted tetracyline flush if you feel you do have to put something in?

    I bump my does if they get up after the first kid. Just wrap your arms around them and lift gently right before their udder. Kids in there feel like hard lumps. A cleaned out doe is soft and squishy. Now, I did bump one last year that I thought was done, but then she just didn't seem to be acting quite right. After going in with a hand, I found a lovely decomposing kid at the bottom of her uterus. Ugh. Since it wasn't moving, it wasn't stimulating her to contract anymore. We got it out and she was fine, but it would have been awful nasty if it was left in.

    Tracy
     
  11. elly_may

    elly_may Well-Known Member

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    I have never gone in to check or assist. My one doe delivered premature stillbirths in July without trouble. I have both does bred hopefully one November 1st and the other on Dec. 15th - so April and May should be kidding for me.

    Vicki, could you explain how one knows how far to extend into the doe, ie what you are feeling for etc. and how do you 'bring the kid forward' - working with contractions ???

    This is new knowledge for me and want to be prepared just in case.

    Thank you and congratulations Mary - have fun with the little ones :dance: .
     
  12. Debi

    Debi Active Member

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    Last year was the first time I had to "go in". It was easier to imagine what I was feeling after I closed my eyes. I wasn't sure of ANYTHING until I found teeth and was then able to navigate around and know I'd found front legs on a stuck, dead buckling. After several attempts, our hot soapy water bucket was full of mud, hay, blood but we finally got the little one delivered. We kept things as clean as we could but ... The doe survived our first search and rescue effort.

    As to how far, I was amazed that my arm was elbow deep before I found the buckling. It didn't seem to bother the doe at all. I was so afraid of hurting her but she never noticed my bumbling. She wasn't even offended when I started cussing. Goats are very forgiving and appreciative.

    One thing my vet told me before kidding began was to make sure my nails were short in case I had to help.

    Hope this helps.

    Debi
    Kaufman TX
     
  13. Vicki McGaugh TX Nubians

    Vicki McGaugh TX Nubians Well-Known Member

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    I used to bump like Tracy, until like her, I missed a kid. Last year one of my does kidded a perfect doeling then some mummified kids, they also would have not been found if I had not routinely gone in..she's a huge doe, who does not have singles.

    I think everyone should do some of this each year. Go in a doe who you know her due date, feel what a tight cervic feels like, then as she is in early labor, feel what a dialating cervic feels like, if you are not good about washing your hands :) than wear gloves, they certainly don't put us on antibitotics when they keep checking us at the hospital when we are in labor. Shoot they don't even routinely give antibiotics to C section moms..me!

    Then as she is pushing, just slip your fingers in the vagina, especially on my young first fresheners, I want to feel teeth and front feet coming, before I see them, I don't want the kid wedged tight into the birth canal with no room for me to maneuver if it is not presenting correctly. The eyes closed is a good idea, lets you concentrate and feel/see with your fingers.

    The worse thing you can do is let a doe push and push for several hours, all she is doing is getting the kids all wedged in the cervics, until the first kids position is fixed none of the kids can come out. We call this a train wreck. Simply inserting your fingers, hand, and wrist till you find kids, and then figuring out what is out of place...a head back? A head up? A front leg back and over the head? A rear leg coming? A leg from another kid coming with the front kid? Or worse, decomposed or shizims (many headed or multi legged kids), someone on the board had one of these, and I delivered a bulldog kid 2 seasons ago, a kid with this huge head, with no formations (eyes, nose, ears). Luckily they are out before you realize what you had your hands on. I knew exactly what it was by feeling, I was at another breeders house visiting, in front of a 4H kid and a new breeder, not something you want to see your very fist kidding you see.

    Don't pull unless you know what you are doing. Never pull on front feet without the head out, you simply just wedge the head futher and further up into the pelvis, the head can't come out like that. Put your arms into a turtle neck, have someone pull on your arms, and now try to duck your head through into the hole also, impossible. I don't turn kids coming out breech, hind legs first, but I do take special care of holding onto the cord about 4 inches away from the kid so it doesn't rip at the belly. Make sure the feet you have are connected to the same kid. Make sure that you have two front feet and not a front and a rear, you can always tell from the knees or hocks, if you have front feet or back feet.

    With you hand in the vagina and then through the cervic it will stimulate the doe to bare down. You actually cause contractions when you help. I have gotten my little hands into some awfully tight positions that actually caused me pain when the doe bared down and squished my hand futher. A big buck head was one, I have small hands, I can't get my hand around a buck head and pull, so I put my hand in the mouth and pinch down the nose and the mouth, using my fingers inside the mouth on the inside of the teeth to pull with..I don't have enough hand strength to pull a head down that is wedged in the pelvis, so I came up with my making a halter inside the doe around the head and pulling down while you pull the nose and feet out.

    Birthing small ruminants isn't as much about strength (except in your hands) than it is about manipulating. I cringe when the girls at the club talk about bracing their feet against a doe and pulling so hard they are sore the next day! Fix the presentation and there is no pulling that hard. Vicki
     
  14. susanne

    susanne Nubian dairy goat breeder

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    what do i do if the doe is not used to me? will she still let me do this? i have some does that are very shy. i can not touch them yet. i'm still working on it.
    susanne
     
  15. Tracy in Idaho

    Tracy in Idaho Well-Known Member Supporter

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    When they're in labor, you can do just about anything to them. At least the wild ones I had were like that. But you can always have someone hold the front end for you if necessary. And if you let them lick the gunk off your hands, they will bond with you....since I bottle feed, I resign myself to being licked over for several weeks after they kid. MaryAnne will rip my hat right off so she can lick my hair :rolleyes:

    Tracy
     
  16. Stacy Adams

    Stacy Adams Well-Known Member

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    I remember the first time that happened to me.. Rose was a very shy doe, but after handling her newborns, she was one licky-licky girl!! and still thinks I'm the greatest thing since oats..
    :haha:
     
  17. mary,tx

    mary,tx Well-Known Member Supporter

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    Keisha is crazy about me, and always wants me there, but when I tried putting my hand in, she jumped up. I would have had to call someone out to help.

    Let me ask another question. The other doe that kidded over the weekend pushed the first one out tail first, after much effort. This is the second time I have had one kid this way, and both were fine. But thank goodness that first was the smallest. Surely she couldn't have gotten one of the bigger two out that way. What do you do when you see a tail?
     
  18. Tracy in Idaho

    Tracy in Idaho Well-Known Member Supporter

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    You can always tie them to the fence if you are alone and they aren't going to be still.

    If I saw a tail, I would try to push the kid back in a little, straighten the hocks, and guide the rear feet out first. If you already have hocks out, you may as well bring him on out. Either way -- like Vicki said before, you want to try to keep a hold of that cord a little ways down so that it won't tear short or before you want it to.

    Tracy