Pregnant? Pooch test and behavior clues.

Discussion in 'Goat Management' started by littleheathens, Aug 22, 2020.

  1. littleheathens

    littleheathens Active Member

    145
    Apr 27, 2019
    south central WI
    My two does, both approx 16 months old, have been with a buck for 4.5 months now, since April, along with a wether that is a couple years older. The wether is quite a bit bigger- they are all Nigerian Dwarf except one mini Nubian doe. We can't tell if the girls are pregnant but we're thinking not.

    We see them breeding at times, especially the Nigerian doe. We also see the buck acting bucky and rutty but the wether, Axl (wether), interrupts his process by head butting him away and pretending he's the buck with the stuff. Surely at some point, if girls were fertile and they spend 24-7 for months there would be some moments that they could be successfully breed it seems. We don't see a lot of signs of heat, except that the girls do stand (again, especially the Nigerian) for the buck. Then again, I don't often notice my goats in heat.

    I'm concerned that the wether is being excessively aggressive and successfully interrupting the process. (I'm also concerned that this buck is not fertile; he was incredibly sick last summer after moving here but he looks fantastic now. This is probably far-fetched). There is also quite a height difference between the mini Nubian doe and the Nigerian buck.

    What do you look for exactly when inspecting the back ends? I need a good pooch test tutorial!

    An ultrasound costs $64...it's so tempting to just KNOW, if, when, how many...
     

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  2. Moers kiko boars

    Moers kiko boars Well-Known Member

    Apr 22, 2018
    Oklahoma
    You can have a blood test done.
     
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  3. littleheathens

    littleheathens Active Member

    145
    Apr 27, 2019
    south central WI
    Yeah, I know. But that is slower, fussier, and gives less information for not that much less $. I'm not equipped to do my own blood draws yet. I'd like to know what other goat keepers think, especially about if behavior of our wether is problematic.
     
  4. Ashlynn

    Ashlynn Well-Known Member

    517
    Sep 30, 2017
    Lutz, FL
    I never go by what their hind end looks like. I go by whether they have gone into heat again since the supposed breeding. If the bucks want to breed a doe, they will. Of course he might not be fertile, however I don’t think the wether would totally prevent the deed.
     
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  5. CCCSAW

    CCCSAW Well-Known Member

    523
    Jul 11, 2019
    California
    Can you separate the wether for a month? Maybe he is blocking the buck from doing the deed. Also what minerals and supplements have you given? They look good for such a limited picture but if your in a low selenium area they might need selenium (buck included) to boost fertility. It also might be worth separating both the buck and wether from the girls for a bit of possible, just like to an adjoining field to help you judge interest.

    Typically speaking a doe won't stand for a buck if she's not in heat, so if she is standing she's probably not pregnant.
     
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  6. littleheathens

    littleheathens Active Member

    145
    Apr 27, 2019
    south central WI
    We're in a kind of moderate selenium area. We use a high quality mineral and haven't noticed our lambs or kids with low selenium-- this is our mineral https://www.premier1supplies.com/p/goat-trace-mineral-premix
    We boost with a little copper bolus too. They also have a selenium brick. Maybe they could benefit from even more.

    It's so much more pleasant for them and us to keep everyone together so we haven't tried separating yet but we are trying to sell the wether; we just don't need him any more. I wanted to fish for opinions first.
     
  7. CCCSAW

    CCCSAW Well-Known Member

    523
    Jul 11, 2019
    California
    I would think then your best bet is get an ultrasound (or blood test) and if they are not see if the vet can do blood work for selenium levels. It might cost a bit but it would be better to know then to give an extra treatment. Otherwise continue to wait it out and see what happens. Or if they aren't bred you could separate them and do cidr's to try to try rest the girls and insure heat and timing
     
  8. goatblessings

    goatblessings Fair-Haven Supporting Member

    Jan 5, 2015
    Southwest Ohio
    Agree with above - you won't know the answer to you question as to if the wether is interferring or if your buck is not fertile. Blood draw or ultrasound. Lots of times ultrasounds can be off as the number of kids, etc. It doesn't take long for a blood test to come back. In the meantime, I would separate the buck and the wether from the girls. You can see if they come into heat, and also males constantly bothering your does can cause abortion.
     
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  9. littleheathens

    littleheathens Active Member

    145
    Apr 27, 2019
    south central WI
    I know, I know. Ultrasound or blood test. :) I just have to decide if we want to spend the money on those or go a different route. Thank you all for your advice.

    If there was some confidence in the photo diagnosis here it would help us decide what to do next.
    @SalteyLove @goathiker ? Any predictions? When I look at these photos I don't see consistent changes from one bred doe to another; I'd like to see it better but it's apples to oranges to me. I've not been able to find a good explanation on what to look for.
     
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  10. NigerianDwarfOwner707

    NigerianDwarfOwner707 Well-Known Member

    May 17, 2018
    East Coast, USA
    There’s really not a confidence in photos.

    I’d say maybe they look on the side of more bred than not - but please do spend the money for the benefit of your goats.
     
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  11. toth boer goats

    toth boer goats Moderator Staff Member Supporting Member

    Jul 20, 2008
    Corning California
    For being in with a buck for 4.5 months, I see no pregnancy signs.
    No baby belly or any change in udder or vulva.
     
  12. littleheathens

    littleheathens Active Member

    145
    Apr 27, 2019
    south central WI
    A little update...
    We have not tested but kept watching and waiting. The wether is gone recently but he did settle down quite a lot in regards to butting in. The ND doe looks to be far along, I suspect she was bred when I saw them about the time of this initial post. She'd be due in about a month. (woo)

    I will draw blood soon and check the mini-nubian when I do all the other tests, maybe I'll get some good photos too so we can see before and afters. I've not noticed more heat cycles but I could totally miss it. It may be a fool's errand to some but it's kinda fun and just another tool in the box. It's worthwhile IMO.

    I don't know why it took so long for the ND to settle but I struggled with the breeding age/size decision anyway, and in the end they chose. Seems fine. Of course they always interfere with our planned trips- how do goats do that??
     
    Last edited: Dec 5, 2020
  13. littleheathens

    littleheathens Active Member

    145
    Apr 27, 2019
    south central WI
    unnamed-1.jpg unnamed.jpg Maybe a thumbnail image would have been more appropriate!? Ha ha! Anyway, these are my two does who I think were (b/w ND) very freshly bred, and (brown mini Nubian) not bred. They both look bred now, I think.
     
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  14. ksalvagno

    ksalvagno Moderator Staff Member Supporting Member

    The black girl looks possibly bred. The second picture doesn't look bred.
     
  15. MadHouse

    MadHouse Well-Known Member

    I see a definite change in the ND, but no change in the mini nubian. Good luck!
     
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  16. goatblessings

    goatblessings Fair-Haven Supporting Member

    Jan 5, 2015
    Southwest Ohio
    I go crazy trying to feel out early breedings. I always blood test about 40 days out post breeding.
     
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  17. littleheathens

    littleheathens Active Member

    145
    Apr 27, 2019
    south central WI
    Hey all! So both of these girls are bred. It's been interesting.

    We did a P-test (Emlab) on each of them and the results were, sort of, as I expected. Celeste (black ND) tested negative but she was showing all the physical signs of pregnancy and not breeding with the buck. I messaged emlab and asked them about some possible user error issues and they clarified what may contribute to a false negative and what may not. The biggie was that the newly set up winter water bucket had tipped so they were without water since the afternoon before so she was dehydrated. Concentrated urine can cause a false negative.

    Cinnamon (mini Nubian) got our assistance when we saw attempts made and leg lengths not working. We got the buck on a pallet and helped them in mid-October. Her P-test showed she was in the early stages ("1st trimester") of pregnancy. Just what we thought! I see a difference in their back end photos in the before and after pictures too. We did the P-tests in mid-Dec.

    The black ND is due any day, assuming she was bred when I happened to watch at the time of this thread's beginning. Otherwise in a couple weeks. We're training her to the stand and feeling her babies move while she noshes. Fingers crossed for an easy go for this FF!

    I wish I could know why it took so long for the ND's to figure it out, but we know to assist if breeding Cinnamon with him in the future.
     
  18. MadHouse

    MadHouse Well-Known Member