Nigerian Dwarf - Not Producing but Should Be

Discussion in 'Dairy Diaries' started by HMNS, Jul 15, 2019.

  1. HMNS

    HMNS Active Member

    165
    Jul 15, 2019
    Brown County, Ohio
    Hi...my name is Hope.
    We have 2 Nigerian Dwarf does, 4 chickens and 2 dogs in our family and everyone gets along quite well together. : )

    We got our does at 4 weeks old (bottle-babies) and they just turned 2 years old this June and July. We had them bred, for the first time, last December and they gave us some really nice babies that sold before they were weaned. The babies were dam-raised for 9 ½ weeks before they went to their new homes.

    Here's my question...
    One of the does raised two very healthy, very 'chunky' babies. When the babies left, she gave between 12 and 13 ounces of milk at each milking (6A/6P) for the first two days...which I thought was a bit on the 'light' side but, not sure since this is her first freshening. Since then (about a week) she has progressively given less and less and is now giving 4 - 5 ounces at each milking. Her udder is never tight and full feeling and her teats "deflate"/empty quite quickly. I thought she was drying herself up since the babies are gone but, was told that is not possible if she is still being milked 2x/day. Soooooooo...now I'm thinking she might be 'self-nursing' (?) but, I have not actually seen her do it. That would explain why she never has much milk at milking time. The other doe's babies left yesterday morning. She gave about 4 ½ ounces last night and almost 16 ounces this morning.

    I'd sure appreciate hearing any thoughts, theories or suggestions. : )

    ~ Hope ~
     
  2. Alpine Crazy

    Alpine Crazy Active Member

    131
    Jul 14, 2019
    Virginia
    What do you feed her?
     

  3. mariarose

    mariarose Well-Known Member

    What are you feeding?

    I'd tape her teats to see if she is nursing.
     
  4. mariarose

    mariarose Well-Known Member

    LOL we typed this at the same time.
     
  5. Alpine Crazy

    Alpine Crazy Active Member

    131
    Jul 14, 2019
    Virginia
    Haha yeah that’s the first question that came to mind.
     
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  6. Dwarf Dad

    Dwarf Dad Well-Known Member

    Welcome to the forum!:cowboy:
    I have no first hand knowledge to share, just believe in the advice you receive from the answers that you give. The questions are not judgemental, they are for informational purposes.:)
     
    mariarose likes this.
  7. NigerianDwarfOwner707

    NigerianDwarfOwner707 Well-Known Member

    May 17, 2018
    East Coast, USA
    What is her diet?

    What are her FAMACHA scores?

    Have you gotten/can you get a fecal test?
     
  8. HMNS

    HMNS Active Member

    165
    Jul 15, 2019
    Brown County, Ohio
    Hi...
    I am feeding her Purina Goat Feed 2x/day and free-choice Alfalfa/Orchard Grass Hay (Standlee from Tractor Supply) plus...free-choice Loose Minerals and Baking Soda and all the clean water she can drink.
     
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  9. HMNS

    HMNS Active Member

    165
    Jul 15, 2019
    Brown County, Ohio

    Hi...
    Her FAMACHA is great! Nice and Healthy Pink. She had a fecal done a couple of weeks ago and it came back clear...no signs of parasites or cocci.
     
  10. NigerianNewbie

    NigerianNewbie Well-Known Member

    Jun 5, 2018
    Central NC
    Hi, welcome to The Goat Spot, glad you joined. The members on here experienced with milking will be more than glad to answer your questions and help you figure this out.
     
  11. NigerianDwarfOwner707

    NigerianDwarfOwner707 Well-Known Member

    May 17, 2018
    East Coast, USA
    Are you saying your hay is Standlee brand? Do you mean that they are pellets?

    What minerals?

    May we see photos of her?

    Don’t feed baking soda ;);)
     
  12. HMNS

    HMNS Active Member

    165
    Jul 15, 2019
    Brown County, Ohio

    Hmmm. I would be worried that she would eat the tape off whether she was self-nursing or not...unless I put a "cone of shame" on her maybe.
     
  13. mariarose

    mariarose Well-Known Member

    Very good, just a few more things.
    I'd take away the Baking Soda and replace it with a salt lick. TSC sells them. Much better for her.

    What is the level of protein in your feed? (I don't have a label for that) Protein makes milk.

    It's wonderful you are feeding loose minerals. Which ones are they?

    What is her temperature?
     
  14. mariarose

    mariarose Well-Known Member

    No, don't do that.
     
  15. mariarose

    mariarose Well-Known Member

    Standlee also makes a compressed hay bale. My TSC sells them.
     
  16. Alpine Crazy

    Alpine Crazy Active Member

    131
    Jul 14, 2019
    Virginia
    How much feed do you give her?
     
    Iluvlilly! likes this.
  17. HMNS

    HMNS Active Member

    165
    Jul 15, 2019
    Brown County, Ohio
    APOLOGIES for not responding. I tried but, my reply was blocked by the website...maybe because I am new. I am feeding both of our does a 'heavy' cup of grain in the AM and again in the PM. I have been keeping daily milk production records on both does and they seem to be producing about the same amount. Both does are giving a daily total (AM + PM together) of between 15 and 20 ounces each.
     
  18. HMNS

    HMNS Active Member

    165
    Jul 15, 2019
    Brown County, Ohio
    PS: I was able to figure out that she is NOT self-nursing. I painted her teats with food-coloring after milking her, figuring I would see blue coloring on her mouth or the teats would show if anyone had been 'using' them. Nothing...the teats were still painted and she didn't have any food-coloring on her face or mouth so...yea! :)
     
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  19. HMNS

    HMNS Active Member

    165
    Jul 15, 2019
    Brown County, Ohio
    Hi Mariarose...
    I apologize for not responding sooner. I tried but, kept getting blocked by the website for some reason. (maybe because I am new...?)
    Anyway...the protein level in the feed is 16% + they have access to alfalfa/orchard grass hay 24/7. I have pulled the Baking Soda and replaced it with a Himalayan Salt lick from TSC. I am curious about the Salt vs. Baking Soda tho'...can you tell me why they should be getting the salt and not the Baking Soda..? I have never heard anything negative about the Baking Soda except that it shouldn't be given to male goats. Thanks! :)
     
  20. mariarose

    mariarose Well-Known Member

    Whatever the issue was, I'm glad it has been resolved. The site went through a bit of a bitchy glitchy episode recently. Perhaps your trouble posting had something to do with that.

    I'll gladly talk to you about salt vs BS.
    Short story is that no goat should constantly need a buffering compound. They make it themselves unless you are giving it to them, but then they can't make it when they need it. The goats will take the baking soda when they need salt, not just when they need a buffering compound. If they have enough sodium in their system from the baking soda, then they may not eat enough regular minerals and regular salt. And finally, salt, especially the sea salt lick you have replace the BS with, has many more beneficial interactions in the body than just plain sodium has.

    IMO, you made the right decision.