A Rocky Start

Pongo had a rough first couple of days. It took him about 48 hours to finally start getting up and walking on his own. Phil or I would go out every hour or two and give him a bit of physical therapy in the form of standing him up, supporting him as he shuffled along, and moving his joints, which seemed to want to flex in every direction. We were also concerned that his heartbeat and breathing were abnormally fast. I have a wonderful friend who is a vet and I asked her to come take a look at him on Tuesday. When she arrived, I grabbed both babies from where they were laying in their shelter and brought them into the house where we could all be warm during Pongo’s examination. It was when I plunked Perdy down on the floor that the vet noticed she wasn’t standing on her right. She’d been hopping around only an hour earlier! We had a look and the leg was broken near the hock joint. I realized with horror that some goat must have stepped on her! I don’t have any goats that are mean to babies, but Perdy must have been lying in the doorway of the shelter or under one of the feeders and got trampled by accident.

So it turned out to be a good thing I had the vet here! She made a splint for Perdy’s leg and then she checked out Pongo. She agreed that his heartbeat was abnormally fast, but she couldn’t hear anything really wrong with it. He’s bright and active and has a pretty good appetite so she said to just keep doing what we were doing with the physical therapy.   

Because we now had two special needs kids, we decided to set up an enclosure in our basement where we could keep an eye on them and make sure no other goats could step on them. We brought Snowball in to feed them and settle them into their new temporary home before taking her back outside.

Babies love having a cubby hole to hide in, so we found a cardboard box for them to crawl into. It barely fits the two of them together, but I think they like being smooshed in there.

We were expecting cold weather the next day, but the predicted storm passed us by and we were able to let the babies out with their mama in the big pen for most of the day. Pongo was intrigued by the dog, who responded to Pongo’s inquisitive prodding with a slow flapping of his tail. It was pretty adorable!

Perdy adapted to her cast pretty quickly and was hopping around and exploring just as much as her brother. In some ways this is convenient. Having a baby goat with a broken leg is sad, but since her brother is slow to develop it’s slowed her down to his pace. She was kind of jumping all over him before and being a little bit annoying. Now they are both shuffling around and gaining mobility at a similar pace.

Snowball was happy to enjoy a day of sunshine with her new little family. I closed the gate so the other goats couldn’t bother them.

Today Phil and I brought the babies into the house for a while. They found a nook beside the washing machine and promptly curled up in it. Too cute!

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