Capri’s babies – May 19, 2014

Capri’s time was getting very close so the afternoon of Friday, May 18th, so I put her in the kidding pen.  Poor thing was huge.  I had decided if she had her babies on the 18th, I would find good volcano names for them, hoping at least one would be a doeling to be named Helen.  Because of all the trouble she had last year, I decided to spend the night in her stall since she had her babies late at night the past two years.

Sometime around 10:00, she started calling out every few minutes.  Around midnight, she started showing signs of getting ready to deliver and quite vocal though no clear contractions.  By 3:00 a.m., she was quiet.  I left the barn only long enough to get a drink of water and use the bathroom.  Summer had shown me just last month triplets can be born in less than ten minutes though it could have been five!  At 6:00 a.m., Capri had still not called out for over three hours so I decided to go inside and actually sit down for a few minutes.  I had the monitor that would alert me when she  yelled so I wasn’t concerned about the short time I would be gone.  That turned out to be a critical mistake.

A little before 6:30, she called and I headed for the barn.  When I got there, a little white fluffy baby was trying to get her first meal.  Two babies were in front of Capri’s head, one had the bubble broken away and she was frantically trying to break the bubble from the other.  I hurriedly helped her finish with that baby then turned my attention to two who were still at her behind and, sadly, still fully in their bubbles. In an ideal world, a kid is born feet first with their tiny hooves breaking the bubble so when their nose emerges, they can take their first breath.  This was not an ideal world and neither of the last two babies’ hooves were strong enough to break the bubbles.  Now I was the frantic one as I broke the bubbles and rubbed them with the towel, held them upside down, etc., but could not get them breathing.  Crying, I took those two precious babies out of the pen hoping that mom was so busy she didn’t notice.  I still tried a little longer to revive them but it was just too long.  I felt, and still do, that I killed them because I left the barn less than half an hour.  They just came too fast for mom to take care of them by herself; five babies is a lot for one little goat tongue.

I let myself cry and then called my son to come to bury these two precious babies, a little boy (3 lbs. 19 ozs.)  and a little girl (2 lb. 21 oz.) with Capri’s lost babies from last year, under the apple tree.  Based on what I witnessed last year with Summer, I think the first was born right after I left at 6:00; mom didn’t yell because she was so small, just 1 lb. 10.5  ounces, less than half the size of the second and third born.  It looked like mom had her all cleaned up and nursing when the rest were born very quickly and came so fast she simply could not could clean them fast enough.  Since one of the last born was a little larger, that is likely when she called out that one time.  The second and third were just over three pounds, twice as big as their oldest sister.

With the fourth and fifth baby out of the kidding stall, it was time to attend to mom and babies.  First, I finished drying off the babies.  Mom stood so they could try to get some milk.  I made certain all three got latched on for their first meal, second in the case of Tiny Baby.  Then I got a large bowl of warm molasses water for Capri which she gratefully gulped and asked for a little more.  After birthing is the only time she has drank molasses water but she really likes it then.  Now, she settled back as these three little additions were testing their legs.  She was able to catch a quick nap before she got up to let them nurse again.


Mom breathing a tired sigh after delivery and then a drink of warm molasses water.

Mom breathing a tired sigh after delivery and then a drink of warm molasses water.

Capri taking a short nap after birthing and cleaning her babies

Capri taking a short nap after birthing and cleaning her babies.

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