I remember my pregnancies felt like a long, long time bit nothing can compare to the wait for the goat to give birth.
At around five months gestation, it seemed like time stood still-despite her giving birth three days before her official due date.
I had hoped I would see it happen and was planning to film it but nature had other ideas and little Chip’s dignity remains in tact.
I knew she was close on the Sunday night. There was a lot of discharge and she was stood in a corner looking at the wall. She was getting in the zone-just like a woman would do during labour.
I took her brother, Chocolate out and they could see each other but couldn’t get to each other. Neither of them was happy about it and, after an evening of bleating, the farmer and I decided she couldn’t be as close as we thought and we put Chocolate back in.
The next morning, I went out with my torch to check.
I usually start at the left hand side of the stable where she is and shine the light in a clockwise direction. That day was no different but, no sooner had I started shining the torch, I caught glimpse of a beautiful little goatlette, sitting in the straw.
I could not believe my eyes, turned the torch again, shrieked and ran back to the farmhouse to announce the news.
‘We’ve got a goat baby, we’ve got a goat baby,’ I squealed.
Even the farmer looked pleased-probably because I must have looked to happy.
I pulled myself together, went back and did what any livestock farmer would do-I checked the sex.
It was a girl so even more reason for me to be pleased.
I managed to get Chocolate out and it with the other goats, put some food in Chip’s bowl and left them to have a bit of bonding.
There was a concern later in the day over whether the little goat had drunk any milk but, she was stretching and had a full tummy so, when the farmer reassured me, I felt better.
Chip was a first time mother and I am so proud of how well she coped with it all. Mothering really did come naturally to her and she is so good at checking the little goat is ok. Even when our boisterous three year old runs in.
We kept G out for a few days, purely because we were worried he would try to lift the goat up by the head but we needn’t have worried. He adores the baby goat and thankfully, Chip knows G well and trusts him so the three spend a lot of time together.
I remarked to the farmer that, apart from the birth of our own children, the birth of our first baby goat at the farm was up there as being one of the best days of my life.
I told the children the options and Boo decided on Cupcake and, she is so small and cute that I think Cupcake is the perfect name.
Cupcake herself has turned out to be as mischievous as any baby got can be. She is a little escape artist and has been found regularly to have snuck under the gate and be frolicking with the other goats-much to her Mother’s dismay.
We have moved them now to try and curtail her escaping activities. Only time will tell if this is successful or not. I am not hopeful. Thankfully, her cuteness makes any annoyance I may feel. She is going to get on so well with the children.
Hurrah for baby goats and let’s hope she is the first of many.