As Leela's due date approached I checked her several times a day for her ligaments to soften or other signs. Her due date came and went without incidence. But that evening she started "talking" which is one of her signs. She is normally a very quiet doe except when she has kids. I checked her ligaments and they were definitely softening. I could still feel them though so I didn't think she'd have them overnight. I was right.
The next morning her ligaments were gone and she was very talkative. I called a friend to come help me in case I needed it. I gathered all the supplies -- lots of warm towels and the kidding kit and sat in the pen with her. I could see her having contractions all morning. She would stand up and sort of stretch UP and her belly would become very hard and round. Hours into this stage we could tell they were coming faster.
Another friend arrived to take the place of the first one because she had to go to work. Right after she left, Leela gave her first big push (see 1st picture). Soon after there was a gush of fluid-- one of the sacks had broken. The first kid soon presented but with only one foot and the head. While she was pushing with all her might I worked my fingers around to the shoulder of the kid and sort of wiggled and pulled until she came out. She was BIG. Leela took to mothering her right away. The little doeling was trying to walk in just a few minutes and already started looking for the teat. In 20 minutes the second kid arrived without too much fanfare as he was in the diving position (head and two hooves). She was happy to see him too and probably glad to be finished!
At first I was waiting for another but afterbirth started coming out so I knew she was done. Both babies nursed right away. I weighed them using a fish scale and put the kids into a cloth shopping bag (one at a time). The doeling weighed 4 lbs 10 oz and the buckling weighed 4 lbs 6 oz!!! Nigerian Dwarf kids average about 2 to 31/2 lbs. These kids were a result of my overfeeding Leela by allowing her to have grain during the last month of her pregnancy. Lesson learned! I will not give grain to my pregnant does until their kids are born ever again!!
The kids are both polled!! I'm so excited about not having to disbud them! And also it is easier to sell polled kids! I will be keeping the little girl and I already have someone interested in the boy. He is very flashy and adorable! The girl is very pretty too! What a happy day!!
I love to tell the story of how I came to have these wonderful goats. I have dreamed for many years of growing my own food and being self-sufficient so when I bought my property I set out right away putting in gardens and an aquaponics system. Fast forward 2 years, my neighbor went on a special diet and couldn't have any dairy so she offered me her fresh raw goats milk she had purchased at the farmer's market. Well, I just fell in love with it! I quickly realized I couldn't afford to buy this wonderful milk but then I had a thought... I could get my OWN goats and have milk and cheese right here! Little did I know I would fall so in love with the goats!