Buck question(kinda delicate)

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Hi, I have 2 mature does fenced in with a buck that is just turning 1yr old this month. He has been trying his "luck" with the girls for at least 6 months now and he just is not getting it right. I know this sounds funny, (we died laughing at first). But now, 6 mo's later the girls still aren't bred, and so we won't be milking anytime soon. He tried about every 3 weeks or so all winter long. I knew they weren't bred because he would try again in a few weeks. Now it's been about 7 weeks since the last time he tried and its like he's lost all interest. Do you think maybe he finally got them bred? Is there any outward sign of pregnancy that I can check for? Also, if they are bred and I take them to another buck will that cause them to abort or would he leave them alone? Just sign my name "confuused"!!

-- Kathy Linger (kack@mybluelight.com), March 21, 2002


They may be bred, or he is out of rut, or the girls simply aren't cycling anymore. If they are diary goats you are to late, if they are meat goats than there may be something wrong with your guy. You will have to wait and see :) You can send in blood for a progestron test around 90 days I think, if you are interested I could look it up, just got the paperwork yesterday. Or after you miss a couple of heat cycles you can go in for ultrasound. I would just wait, and then if the buck is well fed and well grown, no waste my time with him next year, unless the girls are much larger or older than him. I have 2 older girls here, that although they spent 21 days with a 2 year old buck, waited and were bred to my old buck. Older does simply prefer the big ole smelly guys. Vicki

-- Vicki McGaugh TX (vickilonesomedoe@hotmail.com), March 22, 2002.

Um, how can I say this... you say he tried, well, exactly how much did he try, what did he do/ not do? I had a buck that at 7 months old, had 25 does to breed, and walked right past does in heat. He seemed to have NO interest. He was the only buck I had, I was not very happy!! Well, I put him in a open of his own, and let him out every morning. If a doe was in heat, I had to hold her stock still, because as soon as he came out of his pen, he'd try to mount her. Once, maybe twice. If she moved, he quit trying and went to eat! Believe it or not, I got all the does bred... He is till like this- excpet if you have a very special, very young doe that you don't want him to get to. Then, he escapes and breeds her over and over- arrgh!!!

-- Rebekah (daniel1@itss.net), March 22, 2002.

OK... I guess that we've missed our chance this yr because they are both dairy goats! I'm new enough at this to still be learning the basics but I'm enjoying the whole experience and learning a lot as I go. Vicki, don't go to any trouble about looking up info on blood tests, I've got a chance to buy another Nubian who is ready to kid this month and she has a good record of kidding and milking. I don't have a lot of money extra right now and this way I can use it for a sure thing. What I'm doing is trying to get a source of milk that isnt exposed to growth hormone(like cows are). My mom had breast cancer last yr and when she went back for her 1 yr checkup her doctor took her off of all commercial milk products. Because the Bovine Growth Hormone given to cows is being linked to cancers in humans!!!!(No surprise really) He said no milk, butter, cheese or anything unless we knew it to be hormone free. Thats scary isn't it? Most docs won't tell you something like that. But anyway, thank you both for explaining this to me. I thought they would cycle all yr long!! I hope others with breast cancer will read this. Kathy

-- Kathy (kack@mybluelight.com), March 24, 2002.

Kathy, Have you had the buck checked to see if he is fertile? It does happen that the buck is sterile, and that could be why you haven't gotten your does bred. It happened to me once. You always hear about the 6 week old buck that breeds all the does, but not much about the sterility problem.

-- Karen in Kansas (kansashobbit@yahoo.com), March 24, 2002.

Hi Karen, No I've never had him checked, mainly because i haven't been able to justify the cost yet. We've had goats since last summer and have been just kind of getting our "education" from taking care of them and reading books to help us learn as we go. I was hoping for kids and being able to milk this spring, but its not a catastrophe if it doesn't happen until next year. I'd like to watch a few births at someone elses barn fiirst anyway. Thats why I'm thinking about getting a Nubian thats due this month. The guy who has her will keep her until she kids so there will be someone to teach me firsthand!! Thank you for answering me and I will remember what you said about sterility.

-- Kathy (ack@mybluelight.com), March 24, 2002.

You know, the buck may be fertile. Sometimes they are just intimidated by the big does, who would rather have an adult buck. And when a buck, especially a baby buck, runs with the herd, he will have less interest in breeding. Try penning him and letting him out twice a day during breeding season.

-- Rebekah (daniel1@itss.net), March 25, 2002.

Rebekah, I think the problem was that he physically would try and was interested, but the does were a little bigger than him as far as heighth goes. He is a young buck and now that hes over a year old he really isn't a very large guy. My Nubian is still a little taller than him. The does both stood still for him to try, and he did try but just couldn't. Probably should get the girls to spend a week or so with sommeone elses buck. Is it too late to castrate this buck and keep him around to clear off the hillside? I've never heard of castrating after the first few weeks of age. Hate to get rid of him but if I can't use him for breeding I would rather not have to smell him either!!PHEW!!! Is castrating what keeps wethers from stinking?

-- Kathy (kack@mybluelight.com), March 25, 2002.

its also possible since he is a young buck , he did breed the does , but they still have non ovulating hormone cycles, have the vet test the does , see if preg, or get out your stethescope and give a listen for fetal tones.(if you know what to listen for)if you bring to the vetfor ultrasound , rather than a farm visit it can be cheap, mine did 6 does for 30.00, otherwise would have been an extra 30.00 for farm call, and then still transport back to the vets office, since she only has one ultrasound.

-- Beth Van Stiphout (willosnake@hotmail.com), March 25, 2002.

If you still have the buck- he should be tall enough to breed by the time fall rolls around. If he is still a little short, put a bale of hay or straw behind the doe for him to stand on, or you can have him stand on a milking stand and back her up to it. If he was not able to reach and penetrate the doe, it isn't really his fault that they didn't get bred, and they should take once he can reach them!

-- Rebekah (daniel1@itss.net), August 11, 2002.

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