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Monday, March 24, 2014


Carmel's Cria

Carmel's Cria

To our surprise, two of our four crias have arrived. Carmel had a beautiful female cria on March 19, 2014. Marissa had a beautiful male on the same day.

Now that is the easy part of the story.....Here is the rest!!

The farm we bought the girls from told us their due date was the end of April. We knew we needed to start preparing for births around the first of April...making sure our cria kit was ready, getting trash bags and towels to the barn, and reading like mad. I had started my reading and we had a cria kit on hand but that was it.

Coming up the driveway from our usual long Wednesday, I looked to the field. To my surprise, there laid two crias!!! I throw my groceries inside and started calling people. It was like I had my babies all over again. I was literally running around like a chicken with my head cut off. I had some many things I knew i needed to do but couldn't get focused.

Fortunately, my farm hand had asked to work that day and I said yes just minutes before my discovery. He didn't know what he was walking into either!! The sun was not out, the wind was blowing, and it was barely 45 degrees. I got our two cria blankets out with two old towels and got in the field. I got them dried off and put the blankets on each cria. The male was much smaller than the female.

Marissa, mother of the male cria, was not doing well. She would stand for a few minutes, walk a few feet, and then drop to the ground. She would roll and then just lay. She was not standing long enough to let the cria nurse. This went on for two hours. I decided to call our mentor farm for advice. After a ton of phone calls back and forth, I decided to drive to Spartanburg to get a pain shot from them as well as some frozen goat colostrum to start nursing the cria. He needed to get colostrum within 4 to 6 hours of birth.

Within a few minutes of me heading to Spartanburg, they called back to say they were coming to us to help. Thank you for a huge blessing!!!

A little prayer and a glass of wine later, Marissa stood long enough for the cria to nurse for a few minutes. She would then drop back down in obvious pain. Thank goodness, our mentor farm arrived here within an hour. After watching her for 10 minutes, we decided to give her a pain shot. I had only found one afterbirth in the field earlier. She seemed to still be in labor trying to pass it.

Once Marissa stood after they arrived, she never laid back down!!! The cria nursed well, Marissa ate well, and we all went to bed sleeping easier.

We did call our Vet the next day as no afterbirth had shown. He came out with some antibiotics and checked the crias Igg levels. We are not sure where the afterbirth went. One theory was buzzards since I did since a few in the area. Another was the dog. The vet stated some guardian dogs will eat the afterbirth to prevent predators knowing there is fresh meat in the pasture. Other dogs eat it just to eat it as it is a great source of protein. Whatever happened to it, not sure. We checked Marissa’s temperature for two days and she was normal.

Our mentor farm did say Marissa’s last birth was breach. He had to turn the cria in the womb. This could have caused scaring which caused the additional pain. With this knowledge and the pain she was in, we have decided to rebred her in the fall instead on this spring. Hopefully her body will rest and health.

The crias are growing. They are gaining about 4 to 6 ounces each day. They have started playing with each other which is so fun to watch.

Now we are on cria watch for #3 and #4!!! Might need more wine for the nerves!!!!