I feel like I’ve been in hiding this last week or so and indeed I have been. Life decided that it was going to rain. And sometimes when it rains, it pours. Life got more than a little overwhelming and when it gets like that I hibernate.
We have spent the last 10 or so days pretty much hiding out in our little corner of Ballan, cozy by the fire, baking and eating comfort foods and I’ve also been reading up and learning to work out if we had done anything wrong. Thankfully it doesn’t appear so.
Anna’s nutrition was poor when she came to us due to her missing teeth making it hard for her to eat enough food in the free ranging forage system she was running in. She was a goat better suited to close stabling and feeding which suits us perfectly. We have a small area in which she can forage but primarily we had planned for closer containment and feeding. She had been given an ultrasound some time before coming to us and wasn’t at that time pregnant but of course when running with a buck, things can happen and they did. We didn’t realise that she was pregnant and although we fed her up as if she was we hadn’t quite found the best way to feed her and also the babies that she carried took every ounce of nutrition our poor lady ate. When we began to suspect she was pregnant there was no time in which to do a thing to help, even had we realised how poorly she was. Pregnancy hides malnourishment well sadly.
I know how awful this sounds, like we were starving her or feeding her inadequately but the reality is she was being fed an abundant amount of good food that was easily digestible with added minerals and vitamins and all she really needed. It was fed in such a way as to be easy to eat with her missing teeth too. but the kids took more than she could take in.
Anna appears to have birthed her babies prematurely, by maybe a week or 2. We suspect she simply wasn’t able to sustain the pregnancy any longer. And with the kids being born on such an icy cold night, had they been born live they wouldn’t have had much chance of survival being premature. As it was, they were stillborn.
The dramas haven’t stopped there either. Anna’s health hasn’t been able to support her enough to produce milk. We’ve been able to milk out and freeze some of her colostrum (first milk) but after that her production dropped off to 20-50ml per milking so the frustrating decision was made to let her dry up and to hammer her with the best nutrition possible in order to hopefully get her to health to be put in kid again in a few months time. After only a week it has become very clear to me that we have made the right decision. We’ve adjusted her food to ground grains rather than whole ones, made into a soupy warm meal which she guzzles down with relish. She’s also had an increased mineral regime and about as much nutrition as a body can handle. Already she has gained weight and is looking so much better. 😀
This makes me feel better too. It’s a horrid feeling to realise that an animal you’ve been feeding up and trying to improve the health of is not improving but in fact the opposite. I know it’s not been our fault but that of her condition (pregnant) but even so it’s an awful feeling. It’s been playing on my mind I can tell you. 😦
unfortunate fortunate thing is that all of this fell on what is called birthday week in our house making it a super crazy week. We have 3 birthdays from the 2nd of August through to the 8th which means we have 3 cakes (at least) to bake, 3 renditions of Happy Birthday to endure sing (at least) and 10 lots of candle spitting blowing out to go through (at least). Every child has to spit blow them out once each on each birthday and of course Martin has his own candles toblow out (thankfully he’s learned not to spit 😉 ). We made the decision late last year after Allegra’s birthday that we would not have a big party for our kids but rather have a family day and make some happy kids memories for them instead. We took Allegra for a belated birthday trip to Fairy Land which Jasper and Allegra still talk about. This year for the boys birthdays we decided upon a trip to the snow. Martin took Wednesday off and we all headed up to Lake Mountain for the day where we all had a blast. It was a wonderful positive in the middle of a very frustrating and sad week. 🙂
The weekend came and went with grandparent visitors on Saturday and some wood chopping and woodshed building on Sunday as well as a visit to Mill Rose craft shop on Sunday for some crafting and catching up with a friend which was a lovely escape for me. 🙂 With the weekend being busy it’s meant we didn’t achieved all we had hoped to achieve but he have had the chance to deal and heal from last weekend which is far more important. 🙂 At least the weather was gorgeous on Sunday. Nothing like a little vitamin D to boost immunity and morale. 🙂
So here we are, halfway through the week. We’re spending time constructing the various kits Jasper got for his birthday, hunkering down away from the weather (cold and wet) and focusing on the simple things. It’s been a time of healing.
I have been reading comments but not had the motivation to reply until now. I thank everyone for their support. It has been important to us. 🙂
Well, time to start cooking some dinner so I’d better get a move on before the “I’m hungry” whine begins. 😉