If you are new to goats, you probably have dozens of questions about kidding, which is when goats give birth to kids. Here are a few resources for you to help you understand the process and know what to expect.
First of all, you need to make sure your goat is pregnant. Forget about the pooch test, the ring test, and the bleach test, and check out this post, Is my goat pregnant? The post includes a quiz and a video, along with the latest information on pregnancy testing in goats.
Calculate Your Goat's Due Date
Once you know your goat is pregnant, you need to provide the best possible nutrition. Check out this post about figuring out exactly what your goats need — Do goats need grain during pregnancy?
When your goat goes into labor, you might be wondering if everything is happening as it should. How will you know if something is wrong? This ebook tells the stories of 17 goat births, from normal to tragic, including two c-sections: Just Kidding: Stories and Reflections on Goats Giving Birth
If you are wondering about the pros and cons of intervening in a birth, this post talks about how rare most problems are and what to consider before intervening: Goat birthing: Patience is a virtue
I discuss How Much Should You Help in a podcast episode, and if you prefer to read, a transcript is also available.
If you’re worried about whether or not things are going normally, you might be tempted to ask for advice in an online forum or group. Before you do that, you should read this post about The problem with online advice
If you live in a cold climate, this post gives you tips on making sure the mom and kids survive: Kidding in winter.
Once the kids are born, you might be wondering if they’re okay. This post explains what’s good and what’s not — Conducting a newborn check in goat kids
If your doe has triplets or quads or more, you might be wondering if she can feed all of them, especially since goats have only two teats. This post explores that question — How many kids can a doe feed?
You may have heard that goat kids won’t be as friendly if they are raised by their mother. If you are wondering about the personalities of dam-raised versus bottle-fed kids, this post explores the differences — Dam raised vs. the bottle: Socialization
If you decide to bottle feed — or if you have to bottle feed a kid or two — Basics of bottle feeding goat kids
Since 50% of goat kids will be bucks, and since most bucks will not become herd sires, you will need to learn about castration, which is covered here — Castration options for goat kids
How do you know if your goat kids are getting enough milk? Or are they getting too much? This post answers those questions — Is my goat kid fat?
Now that your does have kidded, she’s making milk! But how do you milk her? Learning to milk a goat
Kidding is the most exciting time of year on our farm, but it can cause novices to worry. However, as they say, knowledge is power. The more you know, the better prepared you’ll be to make informed choices and to handle anything challenging that pops up.
For the Love of Goats Podcast episodes on goat birthing:
- Getting Ready for Goat Birthing
- Goats Giving Birth
- Kidding in Cold Weather
- Worms During Kidding Season
Click here to visit our Amazon store, which includes a list of things goats need.