Goat delivery not a spectator sport


When you are awakened by a doorbell at 1 a.m., it takes a few minutes to get your brain to work.

When you are awakened by a doorbell at 1 a.m., it takes a few minutes to get your brain to work.

When you are awakened by a doorbell at 1 a.m., it takes a few minutesto get your brain to work.

I first thought it was the alarm and reached over to hit the snooze.My mind was processing the information and suddenly realized the dingingnoise that corrupted the extreme quiet of the night was not the normal alarm.

I fumbled with my britches as I stumbled down the hall toward the frontdoor. My mind was pondering that doorbell as I approached the living roomhalf dressed.

"That thing never sounded so loud during the day," passed mylips in a whisper as the obnoxious sound pierced the quiet of the nightonce again.

I opened the door and much to my surprise, a man, a woman, their sixchildren and a pregnant goat greeted me with wide smiles.

"Our goat is having trouble delivering," the man stated ina concerned tone. "Will you see if you can help her out?"

I ground the sleep out of the corners of my eyes and began to examineole' "Tiny," the pregnant goat. She fit her name completely. Shewas a little bitty goat in stature, but large in the belly. She was as bigaround as she was tall. I went to the pickup and got a palpation sleeveand some lube. I began reaching in to see if these babies were about tobe born, when Tiny let out a bone-jarring scream. It sounded for all theworld like a child screaming. All I could think about was the neighbors.What were the neighbors going to think with a noise like that coming fromnext door?

No choice

It looked like my only option was to invite them in and deliver babygoats in the house. I would have liked to have taken them all to the clinic,but time was of the essence and I did not think Tiny was going to make itif we didn't do something fast.

Here's the situation: It is one o'clock in the morning and I am aboutto deliver baby goats in my living room under the watchful eye of a familyof eight. The children ranged in ages from about 12 all the way down to1. I had felt enough when palpating Tiny to know that those babies weregoing to have to come out by cesarean. The garage was out of the questiondue to countless piles of junk from our recent move. I knew if I got a dropof anything on the carpet or floor of the kitchen I was in big trouble.

Roman circus

I spread newspaper, several layers thick, over the kitchen floor andwent to work. There was enough equipment in the vet box of my pickup todo the surgery. I laid Tiny down, clipped and scrubbed the surgical site,gave the proper anesthesia and then noticed that one of the six childrenhad slipped off into the dining room and was standing on the kitchen table.

I decided to ignore the kid and focus on the goat. Every slice with thescalpel brought a chorus of "oohs" from the spectators. They wereasking questions about the surgery faster than I could answer. Remember,about 10 minutes ago I was fast asleep, never even suspecting I would bedoing a C-section on a goat in the kitchen while a kid danced on the tableand his family asked more questions than Alex Trebek.

I finally got the first baby out and handed it off to one of the parentsto dry off with the only thing I could find one of my T-shirts that waslying next to the laundry room. Drying off the next baby took all the papertowels on the roll hanging under the counter. The last baby was dried offwith two dish towels and a pair of socks that came off that evening withthe T-shirt. I used my daughter Abbi's little blue nose sucker thing toget the fluid out of their mouth and throat.

Oh, oh

So far, everything was going well. The babies were all alive and Tinywas doing fine. It was then that I noticed that all of the commotion hadbrought Kerri, my wife, from the bedroom. She was standing at the doorwaywith one eye on a 4-year-old child standing on the table and the other eyeon the "goo" that was flowing across the kitchen floor.

Picture this: The woman of the house, standing in her robe, hair pushedinto rugged piles on the left side of her head, puffy eyes from awakeningfrom a deep sleep, trying to imagine why in the world she married a veterinarian.

I felt a lump in my throat as I tried to conjure up a story of how thisall happened. Just as I was about to say something, the family started thankingher repeatedly for letting them use our house to save their goats. Thoselittle children were holding the baby goats with love in their eyes.

Air freshener, anyone?

There was a faint smell of goat in the house for a couple of weeks. Kerritrashed the T-shirt and socks. I had to mop the kitchen several times toget up the "goo." If any neighbors had heard the scream, theynever said anything. The footprints on the table came off in time and Tinywent on to have several more litters of baby goats.

Related Videos
© 2024 MJH Life Sciences

All rights reserved.