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All information provided in these articles is based either on personal experience or information provided by others whose treatments and practices have been discussed fully with a vet for accuracy and effectiveness before passing them on to readers.
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Goat Birth Chill Print E-mail
Written by Administrator-GL   
Monday, 28 May 2007
Article Index
Goat Birth Chill
Page 2
This is a recent post made to my AngelGoats List - the information is basically the same but written a bit different if this may help you to understand the whats and whys of tubing a chilled baby goat..

First I want everyone to drill this into your heads.. A Baby Goat Cannot Wait.. repeat this 50 times or until you have it memorized.. :-)
Babies who are born especially in cold weather need to eat within 30 minutes of birth.. if they have not yet found the teat- help them.. make sure yu clear the teats of the waxy plugs so the flow is easy.. and then make sure baby gets to it and is sucking.. THEN before you walk away form the baby and new mom.. make sure you see the baby FIND the teat successfully all by itself and eat successfully all by itself.. at least once if not 2 or 3 times.. so you can BE SURE things are OK..
Now for weak babies who perhaps were born and mom didn't get them up and feed them right away and you came in on things after the fact.. or for moms who refuse to feed and you simply cannot get baby to the teat to eat.. or for what ever reason the baby is now chilled (Take their rectal temps as well as feeling the inside of the mouth) the baby is cold and weak.. it's time for action..
Get the baby IN the house.. grab a second pair of hands if possible.. get the baby in front of a space heater with a fan, under a chair with a blanket draped over it and a blow dryer running.. or if nothing else.. open an oven door put the over on 300 and lay the baby on a padding of towels facing the oven (CHECK OFTEN) so the baby is breathing the warm air.. the idea here is to get warm air in the lungs.. which in turn will heat the blood as it passes through the lungs..
NOW while you are doing this and hopefully someone else is helping watch and tend the baby.. get your tubing equipment ready.. a 12,20, or 30cc syringe with a long tip on it (not the luer lock but the luer slip) , catheter for tubing, 2 containers like 2 cup measuring cups.. one with warm water in it, one with what ever you are going to tube into the baby.. I use coffee, molasses or karo syrup, dextrose if I have it, water, and electrolytes. . mix it up.. I don't really measure.. just mix some up.. the coffee is about 1/3 of the entire mix.. a couple TBSP of molasses or karo , the same with the dextrose and some water..warm, not hot but not tepid..
you will have to tube plain water first.. JUST in case you are accidentally in the lungs you would be far better off accidentally getting some water in the lungs than a sticky mess of molasses..

so I always clear the tube with warm water first - I stick the bigger syringe tip into the tube end without the plunger in it so it acts like a funnel of sorts.. I use the 12cc syringe to draw up the water/or feeding mix.. I then shoot the water/feeding mix into the open end of the plungerless syringe attached to the catheter that is already in the goat's tummy, making sure to hold the end of it higher than the baby.. the baby should NOT cough.. the baby will swallow as you give it the warm water/mix.
Using the 12 cc syringe you can measure how much (how many) syringefuls you are administering. Do NOT over do it.. a couple for a small baby is enough.. end by clearing the tube with more warm water the quickly and with an even movement- remove the tube from the baby and immediately turn baby so the face is facing down for a moment in case there is any in the mouth that needs to drip out rather than go down the throat and choke baby.. wipe baby's face and continue to keep it where ever you have it breathing the warm air.. stimulate the sides of the baby.. with your fingers.. and talk to it.. rub it's little butt with a warm wet cottonball to stimulate it to poop.. wait about 30 minutes and if needed redo the feeding again.. stay with baby tending to it the entire time.. rubbing baby, moving baby.. trying to get it to stand.. talking in an upbeat voice.. keep it stimulated.. this may take a couple hours.. all the while breathing the warm air.. AND taking it's rectal temp.. you are NOT out of the woods until the baby's temp reaches at LEAST 101 degrees.. every once in a while put your finger in it's mouth to see if it has any sucking reflex.. when it does.. have some of moms colostrum ready.. warm (and ladies this must be warmed on top of a double boiler or it will curdle like eggs) and not in the microwave.. sit in a bowl of hot water until you are ready to use it.. OR if you have mom in the house try to get baby to the teat to suckle.. which of course is the ideal way to do it.. but do NOT take baby out in the cold to try this.. you will Undo everything you just worked so hard to do.. (you can clean your house later)

Remember.. a cold baby CANNOT SUCK.. And cold baby CANNOT digest milk or colostrum.. you have to get the baby's temp up first..
The Baby's internal temp is warming the blood and getting sugar into the blood.. you need to warm from the inside out not JUST the outside in..
As long as the baby gets colostrum in the first 12 hours of life you are fine.. and I have had successful babies who grow into fine health adult goats that never had colostrum.. so while it is ideal.. it is NOT a death sentence of they do not get it.. the baby can only assimilate the antibody properties of colostrum for the first 24 hours of it's life.. with the second 12 hours not as efficiently as the first 12 hours.. the colostrum is the same but the ability of the baby to utilize the antibody properties of it is lost after 24 hours.. it then becomes rich milk to their body after that which is fine.. just something to remember..
As far as a baby will not accept a teat or bottle if it has been tubed is a fallacy.. this is simply not true..
I have had BOTH bottle babies who accepted a bottle after having to be tubed.. and I have had dam raised babies who accept the teat after being tubed.. And while we're on the subject.. I have had babies who go between bottle and mama very successfully. . so the saying that once a bottle baby is given a bottle it will never go back to the teat is also wrong.. it can and does happen..
Now one more thing ..
If for what ever reason you have no molasses or karo or pancake or any other kind of sugar in the house and you have a soda.. (NOT DIET) heck warm It up (make sure no more carbonation is in it.. and it's warm) and tube this to the baby.. no it isn't the best scenerio.. but it WILL work in a pinch..
A Baby CANNOT WAIT! A few minutes to us may be enough time to lose a baby who is in need to help.. no time to see what happens.. Act now and you wont be sorry later..

Last Updated ( Sunday, 10 February 2008 )
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