Saturday, April 27, 2013

Penny's Babies

After a long labor Penny finally delivered triplets. When I checked her at 6:30 am she had "lost" her ligaments (which means delivery in 12-24 hours). I kept an eye on her throughout the day and late afternoon I noticed contractions. But, they were not hard contractions. She was still in stage 1 labor. After several hours of this I pulled out my book and read that stage 1 can last up to 36 hours. So, I called it a night and headed inside.

I set my alarm for midnight and got a couple of hours of sleep. When I checked her at midnight she was in stage 2 labor, but nothing actually coming out. I watched her for a little bit and saw what looked like feet of a kid coming out backwards. I wasn't worried because breech is fairly normal for goats. But the feet kept coming out and then would disappear back inside. So I gloved up and checked. I pulled with one of her contractions and got a head to the side of the feet. I figured it was one of two things, either two babies were coming out together or the baby was upside down. With further exploration I found that the baby was upside down and twisted. I nudged the head so that the kid was totally upside down but in a more normal position and then pulled with each contraction.

It took a while, but eventually we got the first buckling. (pictures are from today, 16 hours after delivery)

 I cut the cord and got him cleaned up and to Penny for her to continue to clean.

A few minutes later she started to deliver another, but all I could see was a head. The kid was in the same position as Finley, one front leg straight back and one front leg bent. At least I knew what to do. So I gently pulled the bent leg forward and then slid my hand in and dislodged the shoulder. The next buckling slid out.

After cutting the cord and cleaning him up I gave him to Penny. She was a bit confused, but at least she knew to clean them up.

Before I could change the towels another was born, but she was half the size of either of the boys. Teeny tiny! She came out not moving or breathing. I suctioned her mouth and got her breathing. Cleaned her up and gave her to Penny. 

Here is a picture of the doeling next to her brother (the second born), it really shows the size difference. They are standing directly next to each other.

 All three babies have already been sold. They will stay with Penny until Sunday afternoon to get tanked up on colostrum, then go as bottle babies. The boys are going together. The doeling, who has been named Natasha, will go to a family that has also purchased Clara. I'm glad to see the doeling go as a bottle baby because I think that I would have ended up pulling her and bottle feeding her anyway due to her size.

Kidding season is done for the year here at Hiraeth Farm. I'm sure I will be ready for kids again next year, but for now I'm ready for a break and get down to business learning how to make cheese and yogurt!


  1. Kristin, I am AMAZED at the delivery of such beautiful "children"!!! Thank you for giving me a little peek into your farm life :)
    Please let me know when you start making cheese. I would love a sample! Ranae

    1. Ranae, Thanks!
      So far I've made a couple batches of chevre. It was good, but slightly different than the kind from the grocery store. I'm hoping to make mozzarella next. Are you in the Pacific NW?

  2. Ai yi yi, those goats are ADORABLE. Congratulations on managing such a stressful delivery - you did great!

  3. K,

    Just wanted to pop in and welcome your triplets! They are beyond, beyond cute. Amazing job to you as the midwife (and of course, Penny, who had to pop them out). Love to all--

    XO Lynne (and Ed, Amelia, and Ripley the Yellow Lab)