for people who love the littlest dairy goats
Maple kidded last Thursday, 5 May with triplets. This is her 2nd freshening, and she's 3 years old. I was initially worried about the fact that kids were only staying on the teat for about 5 seconds at a time, but they are starting to increase that.
They now seem to be showing a preference for one side, as Maple has been lopsided a couple of times. I've milked her to even her out and checked the other side for any clogging. Now 2 things are concerning me, and I'm again going back through the forum, Googling, and looking in all my books without easily coming upon the answer I need. Here are my concerns...
1. Are udders that feel warm to the touch always a concern? Maple's is warm but not hot.
2. If you can feel the mammary glands (hard, fibrous structures) up high in the udder (closer to the body), is that a sign of congestion? Or possibly mastitis if warmth + hard glands = infection?
I've taken her temperature, and it has been normal. She has been acting a bit depressed at times, like not gobbling up her grain but picking at it. Last night I tried to milk her out right before bed just to see if I could get a totally soft udder (since the kids don't usually drink all night), and one side became impossible to milk quickly... teat completely flaccid but hard, fibrous feeling right above. Maple also became less and less willing to have me try to milk that side, and I did see her walk away from her nursing kids twice last night as well.
I would really like to stop worrying, but I've only milked a couple of goats in my life, and this is my first kidding. I just don't know what's normal. I know how to deal with engorgement in a human, but I don't know whether this is what I'm seeing in my goat.
Thanks in advance.