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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
We are newbie goat owners with an FF Alpine I am planning to breed this fall. She is one of 2 goats, both does. Earlier this week her milk production suddenly went WAY down, and that same day I saw her doeling mounting her. She mounted from the side though, and when she tried to mount from the rear the doe swung her head around and chased her off, so I figured she wasn't ready yet. The next day her milk output was even lower, and she was frisking around like a crazy goat. I called her previous owner and asked what signs her goats genenerally gave, and she said they were often didn't show much sign of being in heat. Given the sudden milk decrease she thought I should take her to the buck so I did. No go. She didn't run away, but clamped her tail and dodged when he tried to mount her. The buck owner thought he wasn't quite as enthusiastic as he is when a doe's in serious heat. The following day her milk was even lower and she left some grain behind in her daily ration (unheard of!). Today her milk production is back up to normal. I have tried a buck rag every day for a couple of weeks and she shows varying levels of interest but never flagging, not even during those 3 days. I can't seem to tell if she's swollen or not, it's not very obvious if she is.

SO -- did she cycle or not? She had 3 days of significantly low production, and I took her to the buck on the second day, which wasn't it. Should I have gone on Day 1? Day 3? Later? I am very worried that I will miss my chance to get her bred this fall if I can never tell when she comes in. Unfortunately the buck is a pretty good distance away and his owner does not allow boarding or leasing, so I have to get her there on the right day or waste another trip. I would appreciate any advice you all can give!
 

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having to transport her must be hard and tricky!! Sounds like she was coming in heat or was at the end of her cycle...Does coming in or going out of heat will stand and wag the tail, still act in heat, but not allow breeding...Standing heat could be her 3rd day, her signs are clear, you just need to watch closely, learn her behavior. I find the further in to the season the more Mouthy my girls become, like they are screaming at me, "times almost tup!! I need a buck now!!" lol...if you can borrow a teaser buck/wether, that could pin point her readiness..
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 · (Edited)
So does their milk production go down before they come into heat, after they come into heat, or while they are in heat? It would help to know if I can count on that as a sign or if it's already too late when it happens.
 

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So does their milk production go down before they come into heat, after they come into heat, or while they are in heat? It would help to know if I can count on that as a sign or if it's already too late when it happens.
Before and during. After their heat it comes right back. If they were successfully bred, their production also drops suddenly in about 2-4 weeks, then will climb again.

You absolutely can count on this as a sign. We have meters in the parlor and a sudden drop in production is either pregnancy, heat, or illness. All three receive attention. :)
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
That's so encouraging to hear! So it sounds like I should have taken her the first day it dropped rather than the second. I'll count 18 days or so ahead from that day and stay on my toes for next time. I hope she starts showing other signs too though. I really, really like this buck and want babies from him this spring!
 
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