So, after dinner at around 8:45 pm, Sean and I went to check on Nanna, and it was a good thing we did! She was laying on the ground, bleating. We could see that she was having contractions and starting to dilate. I ran into the house to grab our kit, which consisted of disposable latex gloves, a roll of paper towels, Betadine solution, a syringe for feeding, powdered colostrum supplement, and small plastic cups for dipping the umbilical cord in the Betadine. The bag of fluid coming from Nanna’s hoo-ha was getting bigger with every contraction. I looked at my phone to keep track of the time; I had read that we should give her about half an hour before going in and/or calling our emergency contact, i.e. someone with kidding experience. Eventually, we saw two hooves… and then a nose! I was so relieved that the kid was in the normal birthing position. Finally, I gave Sean the go ahead to help. At that point, he donned his gloves and started helping the kid out by pulling gently on its legs. It slid out pretty easily once it crowned. Its body was quite long! I breathed a sigh of awe and relief when its nose started twitching, and it started making the cutest, little sneezes. After a bated breath, Nanna went into mama mode and licked at her baby vigorously, cleaning away the film that clung to its little body.
We helped a little with our paper towels, but held back to allow mama to do her job and bond with baby. After she chewed away at the cord, we dipped it in Betadine up to the kid’s tummy. I lifted its tail and saw two holes–it’s a girl! Mama still had the afterbirth hanging out of her. After a while, it didn’t seem like another one was on the way. I heated up some water and sweetened it with agave for Nanna because we didn’t have molasses or enough honey. She sucked it up gratefully.
The doeling has the legs of a supermodel, so it took her a while to figure out how to stand up and nurse. She eventually did, but we decided to supplement her with powder colostrum to be safe. Still, we were so impressed with how Nanna was such a natural, “divine mother,” as Sean put it. To be honest, we were a little afraid that Nanna would be a “deadbeat mother,” considering how she acted like a truculent teenager with us.
Scout stuck her head from her side of the fence to watch the events of the night. Funny girl.
We went to bed almost 4 hours after we first went out to check on Nanna. We were pretty beat, but Sean dutifully got up to his alarm at 3 am to give the doeling another colostrum feeding. As soon as I woke up in the morning, I went out to check on her. Mama and baby both were doing well. We’re going to call her Sterling.