June is due to kid March 3rd, but that doesn't mean she'll actually kid on schedule. I'd like to make sure I'm there for the kidding, so I got this video baby monitor to use so I didn't have to get out of bed in the middle of the night.
I didn't want to buy a video baby monitor, because they're usually $100 and up. I put an ad on Craigslist to see if anyone had one I could borrow until after the kids are born. A lady about an hour away responded that she had one and I was welcome to borrow it! How nice is that? I mean, this lady didn't know me from Adam and she was willing to let me borrow her not-too-cheap baby monitor! This is just a reminder how people really are caring. Sometimes it's hard to see people that way, but I think deep down most people are genuinely good people.
So I played around with different views in the garagebarn, and I think I like this one. I do think that maybe at night I'll change the view so it's more focused on the dog kennel. I can close June in the kennel at night and have an upclose view of her. The video is in color, and it has sound, so I will be able to hear what's going on as well. I'm just tickled pink over this camera! I can put it right on my nightstand so I can just open my eyes and make sure everything is ok.
The reason I'm so nervous about missing June's kidding is because June has tested positive for CAE, or Caprine Arthritis Encephalitis. CAE is a virus goats get that can cause arthritis in animals, and possibly some neurological problems, though that's not as common as the arthritis. Does with CAE can also have udder problems, like hardness and lack of milk. CAE is actually more common than one might think. It's transferred to babies through their mother's milk. I want to be sure to catch June's babies before they nurse so I can bottle raise them. If she has any bucklings, I may let her raise them though. A goat can also get a false positive if she/he's been exposed to the virus but doesn't actually have it.
I was disappointed when I found out June had CAE because I really did not want to have to bottle any kids. I hated the thought of taking the kids away from June. After working on dairy farms, that's one thing I always hated. Sure, the animals eventually got over it, but you could tell the mommas hated losing their babies. I figure I'll bottle any doe kids June has, and I'll let her raise any buck kids, since bucks won't be passing along CAE through their non-existent milk.
There are no issues with humans drinking milk from a CAE+ doe, so June will still be able to provide milk for our family. She'll continue to be a productive member of the family until she's too arthritic to be bred (if that ever even happens), and then she can retire here. June's mom is an older doe, I think around 11 (?) and she seems perfectly healthy to me, so I'm hoping June won't have any problems either.
The way I see it, CAE is just a minor little glitch in a perfectly nice goat. I already got some cow colostrum from a dairy farm where I used to work, and I have a bag of milk replacer ready for the kids. Now all I need is kids! C'mon June!