Last fall Jerry and I made several trips to and from the West Plains area to deliver some La Mancha does to an ADGA registered La Mancha buck to have them bred. We do not have a La Mancha buck. A few days after each trip there was weeping and wailing and much discussion as to why they weren't breeding, etc.

Finally, after over-and-back or overnight trips, we decided that to take them and leave them was the best choice. This meant all four does would be due in the same month....okay, there are worse things. It also meant they would be born later in the season than was desired...but, that was okay...several others had trouble this year settling does for various reasons.

About a week ago, I was making rounds through the goats, checking for udders, looking at feet, eyelids and overall appearance. Lo and behold, I saw a rather large udder on a La Mancha that did not coincide with a due date over 6 weeks away. Upon further inspection of my calendar I came to the conclusion, this particular La Mancha doe was bred on the very first trip over to the buck. (I remember distinctly having to drag her to the trailer, her screaming, in season and nut-so, out of her mind.)

The joy of this discovery was short-lived when I looked her over and realized she had missed out on the 50 days of suggested feeding prior to kidding. I had to trim her feet, vaccinate, and supplement her. I went to town and bought some beet pulp and black oil sunflower seeds to add to her alfalfa pellets, calf manna, kelp, Diamond V yeast (and whatever else I could think) of to put weight on this doe while supplying her with quality nutrition. (The quality prairie grass hay 24/7 goes without saying.)

Her due date should be the 7th according to my calculations. To think, her owner got what she wanted (she just didn't know it). Too bad she didn't have enough patience to see things through. I, however, have come to find an appreciation for these animals that I didn't have before. I am anxiously awaiting the arrival of these babies. I have learned a lot in that area, too. I am looking forward to another challenge.

Does this look like the udder of a goat 6 weeks prior to kidding?