How to Take care of Pregnant Sheep or Goat
- The pregnant animals ewes should not be handled frequently.
- The ewes/does in advanced stage of pregnancy should be separated from the flock and effective care should be taken in
- Extra feed during the later part of pregnancy (3-4 weeks before parturition) will be beneficial for the condition of the pre-parturient ewes does which will help in improving milk production of ewes does and birth weight and growth of lambs/ kids.
- Inadequate and poor nutrition in pregnant sheep or goat may result in pregnancy toxaemia, abortion and premature birth of weak lambs / kids.
- Ewe/ doe in advanced stage of pregnancy should be kept in a separate lambing corals or shed 4-6 days before partition and maximum comfort like soft clean bedding and individual lambing pen should be provided.
- The pregnant ewe/doe should be protected from chilly weather condition.
Care at kidding/lambing/parturition:
- The preparatory stage of kidding ranges between 20 to 50 minutes.
- Vigilant eye should be kept for dystocia or difficult birth.
- Maiden ewes in poor condition or small-framed ewes mated to big rams will generally have difficulty in parturition and
will have to be assisted.
- If no progress in kidding, better call for the veterinary obstetrician for physical manipulation and surgical need.
- After kidding the doe naturally licks the kids which she would invariably do and remove the membranous cover and she may even eat it.
- Allow to lick the kids, which helps in early drying, sensitizing and stimulating the kid and thereby attracts the new born with motherly instinct towards udder.
- If she does not do so better remove the membranous attachment from over the face, nostrils, eyes, mouth as well as the
- Apply Tincture iodine on the naval after cutting the naval cord 1” below with a new sterilized razor blade.
- Do not leave the navel cord as such in hanging position lest it may attract the crows in open causing bleeding injury to
- Allow the kids to suckle the mother within 20 minutes of birth so that the kids get Vit-A-rich colostrum and immunoglobulin essential for the kids.
- Give the doe warm cereal meal-the gruel drink either as such or mixed with one to two tablespoonful.
- In case of heavy milker if not sucked by the kid she should be milked out soon to the extent of relieving her udder pressure.
- Elite dairy goat of high production potential should be milked from the third day of kidding.
- The lambs/kids should not be handled too frequently immediately after birth and let the dams lick and recognize them properly.
- The first 1 to 2 hrs after birth is the vital period for establishment of bond between the new born and the mother. Hence
the dam should be kept in a calm place without disturbance from stray dogs and other animals.
- Allow newborn lambs 1 kids to be with their mother all the 24 hrs for first week or so.