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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hey all, I've got a triplet doe that was quite a bit smaller than her brothers. She's now a week old and I've been giving her an 8 oz. bottle at least 2x a day. She does nurse off her mom but I was worried that she wasn't getting enough, at the beginning anyway, but now I'm wondering if I need to continue. I go out around noon and then again around 9 p.m. and she drinks all of the bottle. I was reading about overfeeding the newborns and was worried that I was giving her too much. She definitely active, still quite a bit smaller and I'm curious as to what y'all would do.
 

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What is her weight? I would probably offer a smaller amount at a time, more times per day. Sounds like she does need some extra milk if she is drinking your bottle with no problem.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
I just went out to weigh her; she's 7 lbs.(if my bathroom scale on the barn floor can be trusted) With the equation of weight x 16 = 112 oz. and then 10% of that is only 11 oz. a day?!? That doesn't seem like enough! I just took out a bottle with 6 oz. in it and she sucked that down and was looking for more.
 

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What kind of mother does she have? Very good, first timer, or kind of lackadaisical? Have you seen the mother get the doeling up and let her nurse by herself? If her mother is not outstanding and does not get the doeling up to nurse by herself, I would probably just pull her and bottle. Logic being that a small doe cannot compete with 2 bigger brothers for 2 teats and will get left out. Secondly, by bottling I don't have to worry about over or underfeeding her and can also get her on some goat grower pellets without competition. I intensely dislike bottle babies, but it is all about what is best for the kid.
 

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I would go with what the kid is telling you. You do need to be careful how much is fed but I usually end up feeding more than the 10% of body weight. I was always told you need to feed 12-15% of body weight for weight gain. So take everything with a grain of salt and do what you feel is right. We aren't there looking at your doeling. But it does sound like feeding her at least 3 times per day would be good.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
This is the mama's 4th or 5th set of triplets. She's not a bad mother but I've never seen her get _just_ the doeling up. The little one has been doing well so far with 6 to 8 oz. I really want to avoid taking her out of the pen; she's not being badgered by the bigger kids and I haven't see any problems. My main worry was if I was overdoing it. 15% of body weight is 17.8 oz so I'll try 6 oz. 3x/day...Thank you all for your input!

ps - FWIW, from what I understand from her previous owner, for one reason or another, this doe has never had to nurse all 3 of her kids. I think she used to breed for spring births and it was always too cold for the littlest ones to make it. That, or the owner would bring in the little ones and let one stay to nurse one side and then she'd milk the other. So I think this is all new to the doe, as well.
 

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She also just may not make enough milk for all 3. If you can keep the little one with mom and siblings, I think that is easier. As long as she is willing to take a bottle, makes life easy.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
She was a week old on Tuesday and is doing great so far. We're doing disbudding and banding this weekend, any issues as far as her being so much smaller than the others?
 

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I can't help you with the disbudding question as I do not disbud my kids, but I'm sure someone with experience in that area will chime in. As far as banding, you might want to hold off on that for a month or so to allow the males urethra to grow. It will help in the prevention of urinary calculi, and the testosterone will also aid in their overall growth. I don't band my kids until 2 months of age.
 

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Are the boys terminal? Meaning that they are going for meat? If not, that is way too young to band. The earliest I would band is 8 weeks old.

I would feel the horn buds on the little doeling and see if they are even erupted yet. If they aren't, I would hold off disbudding her.

At this point, you may only have to disbud the 2 boys.
 
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