How Do You Tell if Your Goat is Bred?

5 Feb

I’ve seen several searches by people wanting to know how to tell whether or not their goat is bred.  This is not such an easy thing to tell sometimes.  With cattle, the vet comes out and does a physical exam to feel whether or not they have a calf.  With goats, you can have the vet do an ultrasound to check for a fetus, but outside of that, it might be hard to tell until just before it happens.  There are, however, some signs you can check for.

First, keep track of your doe’s heat cycle.  They should come into heat about every twenty-one days.  I really do keep a chart that shows the dates of when all my girls are in heat.  Most times, I know they are in heat because they hang out by the buck pen, they flick their tales a lot, have more discharge, and sometimes become very vocal about their desires.

Joe in heat, hanging out by the billy goat.

If you are keeping track of their heat cycles and know when you put them with the buck, you can usually have a decent estimate of when they might be due.  There is the possibility that she won’t settle though.  I have ten girls that were exposed to bucks between October 12 – October 19.  All were in heat at some time while they were with the boys.  That dirty hip on Kizzy below is a good indication she was bred.  You can actually buy a harness to put on the buck so he will leave a mark letting you know if the doe has been bred.

Kizzy with stains on hip from being bred

None of them has shown any sign of coming back into heat.  That would be my first sign, which is another good reason to keep track of their heat cycles.  Not seeing them in heat is not a guarantee they are bred.  They are only in heat for a couple of days and it’s easy to miss if the weather is wet and they don’t feel like standing in the rain to flirt.  I had one doe that went several months without me seeing her in heat, and I finally did have the vets check her, and she was open (not bred).

Pregnant or Fat?

Another indication would be shape of their belly.  Some goats carry straight out from their sides.  Some goats have longer bodies and are not as noticeable.  Most of the time they will start to look rounder at about three-and-a-half to four months along.  Of course, the degree of round will depend also on how many babies they are carrying.  This is just another clue because some goats are just fat.

Litha looking round

About a month or so before birth, they will begin to make an udder.  When this happens depends on whether or not they’ve had babies before and weather.  The new moms don’t start making an udder as soon, and they tend not to have their milk drop until birth when the weather is cold.  Honestly, my girls due in March are so hairy right now that you can’t really see if they are making an udder, so I had to reach under for a feel.  If they are making an udder, it’s pretty certain they are bred, but again, I can tell you about the exception.  Goats have been known to come into milk even when not bred.

Starting to make a hairy udder

As they get closer to giving birth, they will start springing.  Honestly, their privates begin to get puffy and look swollen.  When they lay down, there is pressure from the kids that will make them look like they are beginning to open up or push their rectum out.  Not all goats will do this either. Sorry, but this is the best picture I can come up with for springing.

Lily springing; about to deliver

You might be able to feel a baby move, but this can also be just their stomach working.  In the final stages of pregnancy, you can sometimes use a stethoscope to hear fetal heartbeats.  If your goat looks like this, you can assume she’s bred and ready to kid any second.

Very pregnant Dolly

Of the ten girls exposed and possibly bred for spring break babies, I’m pretty much positive seven are bred, I think another one is, and I think two are open.  I’ll keep checking those udders and watching for more signs for me to be certain.


200 Responses to “How Do You Tell if Your Goat is Bred?”

  1. Tayet February 5, 2011 at 9:26 pm #

    Very nice and informative post!

    • Teresa February 5, 2011 at 9:54 pm #

      Thank you. You are getting to be quite the expert with all the babies you’ve had born at the Lucky 13 Goat Ranch lately!

      • Shariq Jawed Bandukhwala July 16, 2014 at 9:08 am #

        Hey. Teresa i found your article really helpful. I live in Pakistan and have some querries regarding my does. I bought two does and because my parents had some issues with me keeping them at home i kept them at another ladies house. She says that a Billy Goat did the deed with both and asked me money for the stud services that her billy gave. I wanna make sure before that my does are pregnant. Its been a week to her claim. One of my does has become lazy eats lesser than before and one eats as if thats the goal of her life 😛 .. and yeah most importantly when i bought them both were virgins. Can i tell smhow if they have lost there virginity ? and another thing Pakistan is not such a hi tech and developed country so it almost impossible to find a vet who has ultrasound facilty. Please help.
        Shariq Jawed 🙂

      • Teresa July 16, 2014 at 10:40 am #

        The best thing is to watch and see if they come back into heat, which would be three weeks later.

        Some people claim the vulva will point down instead of up if they have been bred, but I find no reliable correlation to that and pregnancy status. It might be an indicator of the buck servicing them though. Sorry I’m not much help there.

  2. texwisgirl February 5, 2011 at 10:04 pm #

    I know you must give your goats (and all your critters) a lot of your time in order to 1) take care of them; 2) keep track of their heat cycles; 3) keep them healthy and happy and delivering healthy and happy babies. And with a job too… I’m impressed.

    • Teresa February 5, 2011 at 10:25 pm #

      Impressed! Wow! Most people just think it’s weird! I really don’t like the standard time when it gets dark so early. It makes it hard to spend the time with them that I would like.

  3. Sharon February 5, 2011 at 10:17 pm #

    Too bad they don’t have some kind of diaper or something that would change color when they are pregnant. I think a pee stick would be difficult with a goat. Your first kids are due in March or Feb? You are gonna be one busy gal!

    • Teresa February 5, 2011 at 10:26 pm #

      Up to 10 (I think 8) are due between March 11 – March 18. I don’t do Feb. babies because it’s too cold and I’m at work, so I do some on the week of spring break. They really should develop a pee test for goats. That would make life much easier!

      • bethany August 3, 2013 at 10:42 am #

        (in response to the pee test) Oh my goodness, wouldn’t that be nice! Blood testing can be done kinda cheap, but I haven’t bothered because I don’t wanna draw the blood myself to send off. I may have to take my girl to the vet down the road, she actually owns a goat herd herself, and have her check my doe. She looks preggers, and should be due, but now Im starting to wonder about a false pregnancy. She should have a heavy udder this close, and there just isn’t much there. Also I haven’t seen any discharge, and her lady parts aren’t as smooshy as I’d expect… She also bred very late (as you can tell by her Aug due date), but I don’t have an exact due date since I bought her bred and she was open bred for the entire 3 months or so. Ugh. This is turning into a nightmare…. Hope others can take my story as a warning, if you buy a doe already bred, only buy from someone who witnessed the breeding or/and is willing to let you use their billy again on the off chance the doe didn’t take……

      • Teresa August 3, 2013 at 10:49 am #

        I hear many people that are very stressed because they buy a “bred” goat and don’t have a clue when. It’s stressful enough when you know a due date. I hope things turn out well for you.

      • Rebecca April 9, 2015 at 12:05 am #

        I know this is an old post but we bought 5 “bred” nannies in Jan and of course paid more since they were “bred” We were lucky to have two very obviously bred nannies kid very shortly, 2 days and a week, after we got them but the other three we have been waiting and waiting! We are positive a third is getting close to kidding but were tired of being unsure of the others. Well, started to do researching as to what our options might be (as we are new to this game!) so obviously I learned there are no “pee-sticks” LOL and didn’t want to pay the cost of a vet to ultrasound just to know. We are lucky to have found out that we have the option to do the blood draw thing for only $6.90 each goat! 24 hours for results and learned 2 are open. Not good news but now we know how to KNOW and for cheap! We will redo in the future!

      • tanya August 24, 2016 at 10:06 pm #

        They do now

      • Teresa August 24, 2016 at 10:08 pm #

        This is an old post/comment. I don’t have any goats due right now.

  4. Pondside February 5, 2011 at 11:24 pm #

    Our gals are past all that and enjoying a well-earned retirement at Pondside. A couple of stags have been hanging around the goat yard, but I’m hoping that it’s just for the extra feed!

    • Teresa February 6, 2011 at 7:32 am #

      I have a few that are retired, but I’m going to have a lot of kids this year, too.

  5. liesl February 5, 2011 at 11:42 pm #

    Very informative post Teresa. That Lily can give a cow a run for her money with that udder!

    • Teresa February 6, 2011 at 7:32 am #

      And she won’t let me milk her! Grrrr.

  6. Alica February 6, 2011 at 4:57 am #

    This sounds a lot like cows. We have a Herdex chart to keep track of their heats and breeding dates (we use A.I. for the cows). What is the gestation of a goat?

    • Teresa February 6, 2011 at 7:33 am #

      Their gestation is about 5 months. I have gestation tables for both cows and goats on my information pages.

  7. Rich February 6, 2011 at 7:33 am #

    An excellent and informative post Teresa… and excellent pictures to illustrate!

    What a great resource for people who don’t happen to have (or know of) other goat breeders nearby. Sometimes it can make the littlest things overwhelming if you don’t know who to ask.


    • Teresa February 6, 2011 at 7:35 am #

      I’ve had several hits from search engines on the topic, so I figured it was my job to do this public service post! 🙂

  8. Sandy February 6, 2011 at 9:03 am #

    Good info! I have one here that I am starting to wonder about. I am just not sure she is ever going to get bred. Starting to think there maybe a issue.

    • Teresa February 6, 2011 at 10:54 am #

      Annie (labeled fat or pregnant) is one I’m wondering about. She had one kid two years in a row, but she spent all last winter with the buck and didn’t get bred. I think she might just be fat. She has no hint of making a bag and she was about that fat before she was with the billy goat again this year. Guess I’ll just have to wait.

  9. Chelsey February 8, 2011 at 8:08 am #

    I have had such a time breeding my girls this year. Last year I let my two does live with a buck for a few months, but this year I tried to take them on “dates” when a doe was in heat. (I lost a doe kid at birth because one of my does surprised me with labor a month before I thought she would…) I had a buck bust through some doors in the barn to get to my girls in January, so now I am just waiting patiently to see if he got any of them. I also have one doe that has shown no real signs of pregnancy until about last week, when I noticed she was starting to make an udder. She was exposed to a buck multiple times – so it looks like she may have finally stuck! 🙂

    • Teresa February 8, 2011 at 12:12 pm #

      I hate surprise pregnancies! Good luck with that. Hope you finally get a kid from her.

  10. jeneen August 7, 2011 at 2:22 pm #

    i got a doe last saturday because i have a buck and i had him for four months he was born april 1st of this year and so now that we got raina (the doe) he has been acting weird like peeing on himself and she has been pawing at him and he has been trying to breed with her but she wont let him and i have no idea if they have bred or not and they are always dirty so i cant really tell do you think you can help me?

  11. jeneen August 7, 2011 at 3:37 pm #

    also the person that i got her from he had a doe and she gave birth to triplets and one was a runt and so he seperates his goats from male to female so the runt got lose and breed with a doe so she had quadruplets and all of them turned out to be small and so now raina is the same size as billybuck (the billygoat) and she is 1year and a month old! do you think that it would be safe to bred him with her? even though he will get a little bit bigger?

  12. jeneen August 7, 2011 at 3:39 pm #

    and also do you think that this is a bad month to breed her?

  13. Kim August 10, 2011 at 12:58 am #

    Texwisgirl told me I needed to read this. You will understand if you view my last post. Very helpful. Thanks!

    • Teresa August 10, 2011 at 8:05 am #

      Glad she sent you here and it helped.

  14. jen September 11, 2011 at 7:49 am #

    I really love all the goat info on your blog, its gonna help me alot. Thank you 🙂

    • Teresa September 11, 2011 at 8:37 am #

      I’m glad to hear this. If you have questions, I will always try to answer them.

      • Janiah October 3, 2015 at 10:42 am #

        Thank you for your post. I am trying to learn as much as I can since we have begun a small goat herd this year. We have a billy and 5 does. We know that 1 doe is bred, and I’m pretty sure a 2nd one got bred today. It would be her first time, and she has blood on her backside now, running down her leg a little. Does that happen at a first breeding? Thanks so much.

      • Teresa October 3, 2015 at 8:53 pm #

        Not sure I can really answer that one. Sorry.

  15. John November 19, 2011 at 9:50 pm #

    I bought 4 does from an individual, was told that they were breed and would have kids in November. So far no kids and I can’t tell if they are with kid. We have had them since August 20, I have on occasion seen a couple of them riding others but no other signs of being in heat. They are getting more of a belly than they had but they were thin when we got them. Is there any to tell or will I just have to wait a couple more month?

    • Teresa November 19, 2011 at 10:00 pm #

      Riding the others is a good sign one or both are in heat and not bred. It sounds doubtful that they are bred. If they were that thin, they might have not settled even though the buck bred them. You can feel to see if they are making an udder. It might be starting by now, but not a guarantee. For some goats, it’s really hard to tell until they are getting ready to have them. If you have a vet around that works on goats, you can have an ultrasound done.

  16. jen December 6, 2011 at 12:06 pm #

    I’m look at this post right now tryin to figure out if Tulip &/or Star are bred… I think Star. I just did a post on it, maybe you can look at the pics. & tell?

    • Teresa December 6, 2011 at 1:02 pm #

      Hard to tell from those pictures because I can’t see an udder. If you have a stethiscope, you might be able to hear a heartbeat this close to when they would be due. Have you seen them come into heat? Is the neighbor’s buck interested in one or both? I always try to start figuring out their heat cycle early in the fall.

  17. judy January 4, 2012 at 10:51 am #

    I am trying. To breed a pigment that is four years. Old is she to old to try?

    • Teresa January 4, 2012 at 11:17 am #

      She would not be too old. However, age is just one factor. If she hasn’t been bred before, it might be harder on her.

  18. jami January 28, 2012 at 10:45 pm #

    We got 2 does and a buck last may. Last october we had a surprise kid. We are milking her and letting the kid still nurse, my question is, is there any chance that she could have got bred back shortly after kidding, and if not what are the chances that she could get bred in may again, is that a freak thing, breeding in late may, we live in nebraska so it would have been warm, and i don’t believe they have any pygmy or dwarf in them.

    • Teresa January 28, 2012 at 10:59 pm #

      While in this area the general rule is that they will only settle in a month with the letter r (Sept. – Apr.) it’s not that uncommon to have an October kid. If the buck has been with her, she is most likely bred.

  19. meg March 22, 2012 at 10:56 pm #

    Will bucks mount a female if she is NOT in heat? I’m a first timer and took my goat to be bred…the breeder kept her for a couple days and they did the deed, but honestly I had no idea if she was in heat or not…. it was just like ok lets try today?? And 5 months is a LONG time to wait to find out LOL…. she doesn’t look much different, but according to our calculations she is “hopefully” due in about 5/6 weeks.


    • Teresa March 22, 2012 at 11:06 pm #

      If she is due in five or six weeks, you should be able to see a widening in the middle. She should be starting to make an udder if you feel. Have you seen her in heat since then? Flagging (flicking her tail) and discharge would be signs. It’s honestly hard to tell sometimes. A reputable breeder should have been able to tell if she was in heat or not. Some bucks might jump and breed a doe just because she’s new rather than she’s actually in heat. Good luck.

  20. kandi May 25, 2012 at 6:28 pm #

    I have two nannies and I’m fixing to buy more but the one I just got Saturday has a full bag at first milk was coming out but now nothing is but the bag still looks full she looks a little poor so I think who I got her from took her off a baby but my question is why is her bag full and nothing is coming out?

    • Teresa May 25, 2012 at 6:31 pm #

      It’s possible she has mastitis. Does if feel rock hard? Does just a bit come out and then nothing? Does she have a fever? If it is mastitis, she’ll need antibiotics. I would contact your vet.

      • kandi May 25, 2012 at 7:11 pm #

        It’s pretty hard and its warm but nothing at all comes out but she has been very aggressive

      • Teresa May 25, 2012 at 8:02 pm #

        I would definitely call the vet to see about antibiotics. Mine prescribe Naxel.

  21. Shelby Hood June 20, 2012 at 11:58 am #

    Love every thing but i am concerned becuse my billy was dehorned but some greew back. he was fine till one day i noticed that one horn was missing. he is over a year old and i dont know if it will grow back.. Oh and do you sell your little boers

    • Teresa June 20, 2012 at 12:01 pm #

      It isn’t uncommon for horns to grow back if they are not done properly or completely. Sometimes they grow as scurs (small and loose) that might be knocked off and then grow back. They make a tool for nipping scurs off when they first start to come back. Biggest thing to watch for is infection if there is bleeding when it comes off.

      I do sell most all of my kids.

      • Shelby Hood June 20, 2012 at 12:08 pm #

        Where are you located if i really was intrested. i have been wanting a Boer or part boer for my one goat herd ( IN PROGRESS)
        And his one horn left is about 3 inches tall can that still be removed it is very loose and wiggley but when he was dehorned they got all but the back side so it about 3 cm thick and only the back half of the horn

      • Teresa June 20, 2012 at 12:21 pm #

        I am located in central Iowa. I would contact the vet to ask if it can be done. When they get older, it gets harder/more dangerous to remove horns.

      • Shelby Hood June 20, 2012 at 2:45 pm #

        ok maby i will just wait and see if it falls off i had to apply blue coat becuse he was bleeding But Thankx and i live in michigan your a little far away lol i’ll keep looking

      • Teresa June 20, 2012 at 2:53 pm #

        No problem. Good luck with the scurs.

  22. Shelby Hood July 2, 2012 at 10:32 am #

    HI i had a question. My goat she was breed but i wasent shure when bacuse she was in the pen with the billy all winter. so latley she has become very swollen in the back. when do you think its a good time to seprate her from the herd.

    • Teresa July 2, 2012 at 11:35 am #

      I generally don’t separate my girls until just before they kid. I try to get them back with the herd as soon as they are comfortable with their babies. Whenever you separate one, they have to go through fighting to reestablish themselves in the herd. Of course, it depends on the facilities you have, and I would not recommend having her with a buck because of the hormones.

  23. Kimberli July 14, 2012 at 5:35 pm #

    I found this post to be very helpful. It has confirmed my suspisions that our nannies are probably all 3 pregnant. One looks to be closer than the others. This will be her first. What do I watch for? Do they need help delivering? I have raised horses, pigs, dogs and cattle. I’m guessing they are simular to cattle. Do I need to make feed changes? Also, I’ve been wondering about worming. What is best?

    • Teresa July 14, 2012 at 5:42 pm #

      If you have experience with cattle it will be similar signs~springing, udder larger. Many times they will kid on their own, but it seems like goats need assistance more frequently than cattle. They should present feet first. If you see long stringy fluid showing and they aren’t making progress I would check to make sure they are presenting correctly.

      Obviously, their nutritional needs are greater when they are pregnant, but I don’t know what you are feeding now to know if you need to change it.

      Worming is very important with goats. I try not to use a chemical wormer unless I have to. If possible, the vet can do a fecal to see if your goats have worms. You can check the inside of the eyelids to see if they are bright pink. If they have scours it is another sign of worms. It is quite common for people to worm and give overeating tetanus vaccine about three weeks before the doe kids.

      Good luck! Hope everything goes well. 🙂

      • Kimberli July 24, 2012 at 10:41 pm #

        You’re probably not on this time of night but I just thought of another question. The nanny that I thought was showing the least signs just had baby # 1. How long between babies usually. I know they dont always have more than one, just wondering. I will keep an eye on her. Do they have one afterbirth per kid or one total? Baby goats are almost the cutest hings around! They have alfalfa/grass hay every day and they graze on the weeds on weekends.I have found mostly stock show goat grain in our small town. I know the pig show feed is differnt than you would feed regularly.I’m assuming it is the same for goats. What should I look for? They are definitely going to need grain while they are nursing right? I’m guessing they probably should have had grain while carrying also. I wish I would have known they were pregnant sooner. Thank you for your help.

  24. Cecily October 6, 2012 at 6:37 pm #

    This may sound terrible but my doe is always been with a buck. I am new with goats and when I bought my buck I was told he was a wether, I found out a couple months ago that he still has one and still can breed my doe. I have seen him mount her many times, but she still has her cycles. Should I get her an ultrasound?

  25. Angie October 12, 2012 at 1:35 pm #

    hey there..I just purchased a female goat last night at a cattle sale. The auctioneer said she appeared to be pregnant cause she goes way out on both sides! Today i have put her in her new home (500 sq. ft. lot) along with another steer goat. Both are pygmys…nw my question is….I am trying to find out about how close we are to maybe having babies???? I am going thru all your pics and looking at her lol. I don t se her udders with milk so we are not I correct? I am so scared and worried ..I have her a nice shelter with lots of hay in there right now.Anything else I need to do??? I am wanting to make sure I do the best for her and to find out about how close we might be. Unfortunately I dont know who the previous owner was ………:( Any help is greatly appreciated!!!

    • Teresa October 12, 2012 at 1:53 pm #

      It’s almost impossible to tell if a goat is bred just by looking at her unless she has is about to give birth. If you think she’s close, you can try listening with a stethiscope on the left side to hear a heartbeat, but that is hard to do sometimes. You often get stomach noises instead of heartbeat. You can look for signs of springing. If you are familiar with cows, you’ll recognize many of the signs when she is close. Making an udder would be a big indication. You can have the vet do an ultrasound if you think she’s fairly close. The other thing would be to watch and see if she comes back into heat.

      The other thing to keep in mind is that goats are cool weather breeders like sheep. If she were due now, it means she would have been bred off season. It is possible she’s just fat. Ruminants do tend to have a pot belly and it’s hard to know they are bred just because they are quite round.

      Good luck!

  26. Danielle October 15, 2012 at 11:26 pm #

    This has been helpful to me, but I have one question. We got a doe who was already bred, or that is what we were told. We just got our buck for our 2 other does & the only one he seems interested in & smells around on is the pregnant one. We were told that after a doe is bred a buck won’t go around her much or bother her. Is that true? I am worried now that maybe she isn’t bred afterall. I will just have to look for signs I guess.

    • Teresa October 16, 2012 at 6:44 am #

      Part of that depends on how far along she is. If she’s really close, there will be more hormones that he might be smelling. Part of it is personality too. My first buck just loved Minnie Pearl. He would always eat and sleep by her. When she was miserable huge, he’d sleep at night with his head on her belly. A young buck will also be around her more because they are still very much like a kid jumping and playing, but the hormones might attract him. I would just watch to see if there are other signs of her coming into heat or being bred.

  27. Mike October 21, 2012 at 6:52 pm #

    Do you have any suggestions on a good ultrasound machine for goats?

    • Teresa October 21, 2012 at 7:13 pm #

      I’ve only ever had it done twice, and my vets came out and did it both times. Sorry I can’t help.

  28. Michelle December 30, 2012 at 6:54 pm #

    Hey, I had three goats bred and they are due the 15 of January (stupid due date I know) but one of them (my only dairy, a french alpine) looks very thin she has just recovered from a thymine deficiency which I went to the vet for. And she won’t eat anything, she has been like this for a few days now. I have given her milk of magnesia for two days in a row, then yogurt, I’ve given her hot molasses water,and “magic”, along with baking soda, and a thymine injection as I’ve heard that it will increase apatite, still she hasn’t wanted to eat. Today I was able to blend some hay, hot water, and molasses, and I got her to eat most of it (by putting it in her mouth and not letting her spit it out) She is very thin and it is so cold out there (I put two goat blankets on her) I do not think she is pregnant as she isn’t very round, although it’s possible that she has a little one in there. Help?!

    • Teresa December 30, 2012 at 7:00 pm #

      Vitamin B can also be given as an appetite stimulant. If she isn’t eating, that can also be a sign of coccidiosis, and they don’t always get diarrhea with that. I’d recommend a fecal to make sure parasites aren’t a problem because that will happen frequently if they have been sick with something else. I don’t know about milk of magnesia, but some of those stomach coating medicines can damage the rumen. I know Pepto Bismol is safe to give. I would also recommend probiotics in case her rumen isn’t working properly. Good luck.

  29. Ash January 13, 2013 at 5:24 am #

    Teresa 🙂
    Where are you located? You were mentioned darkness earlier, so I was wondering where abouts you were. The reason I’m asking is that I am expecting my first goat kids in April, I’m in Alaska, and I’m a nervous wreck. We have a LOT of darkness during the winter, and in the summer it hardly gets dark over here. 🙂 So I was just curious 🙂

    • Teresa January 13, 2013 at 8:51 am #

      I guess I shouldn’t be complaining about how dark it is here in Iowa. I really do miss my long days though. I hope you do well with kidding this spring.

  30. Ash January 13, 2013 at 5:26 am #

    Oh, and I was wondering how Michelle’s goat was doing? Did you hear anything? Did she recover? Hope all is well!

    • Teresa January 13, 2013 at 8:52 am #

      I don’t know. I’ve never heard back. I do appreciate when people come back and let me know how things turn out, but there’s not often that they do.

  31. Karen Parkerson February 2, 2013 at 1:52 pm #

    I am new at this goat raising thing. My Myotonic goat looks pregnant?? Her udders sre getting bigger and the males are still chasing her tho? She seemed to be in heat a few months ago. This comment site was very helpful. I hope I will soon have some kids…

    • Teresa February 2, 2013 at 2:23 pm #

      I am glad to hear it was helpful. Sometimes bucks just like the girls. It might not be a bad idea to separate the males so she has some peace and quiet.

  32. Rachel Leigh March 9, 2013 at 10:24 am #

    Where I live, we own a prize winning billy, along with 12 Boer does. We know every single doe is pregnant, and have been for just over 5 months now, but only 4 of them are springing. About 7 have udders, but the rest of the goats, who aren’t sprining, or into milk, have not shown any sign. A vet has come and said they were pregnant, but without any signs, we don’t know when they will go into labor. Any advice? We are in a tough spot because we all have jobs, and if a goat goes into labor when no one is home, we have a problem because our goats can’t kid alone. Thanks!

    • Teresa March 9, 2013 at 10:56 am #

      If you know when they were bred the first time, you can go forward on the calendar three weeks. That will give you their next due date. It is so hard to watch and see when they are bred when you work. I start tracking heat cycles in early fall so I can come up with a good guess if I don’t have someone due.

      My vet did an x-ray last year on one of my girls and said one baby. In position. Can come any time. I had her due the next day. She waited and had her baby almost exactly three weeks later.

  33. Presley Patterson March 10, 2013 at 8:26 pm #

    my doe was born in april to a twin brother when i separated them from the mom i let them together after i found out he could get her pregnant. so i separated them.after i thought she was in heat once. i am not shore if she is bred or not i can’t if she is in heat or is it out of season for that

    • Teresa March 10, 2013 at 9:00 pm #

      Chances are she is bred if he was with her for very long. They can get bred at very young ages. When were they together and when did you separate them. Depending on when she would have been bred, she might be awfully young. If she isn’t too far along, you can give her a shot to cause her to abort. If it was just the last couple of months, she’ll probably be okay to have kids.

  34. Presley Patterson March 11, 2013 at 9:24 pm #

    she was with him until i can’t remember to good i think 6 months old . i see her very playful once and a while and as she is playing she jumps on her mom or a another young doe thats 5 months old. wagging her tail but only for about 15 min. not on and off all day no wet tail no crying no real signs of heat.also she don’t look pregnant ,she should be getting a wider or a utter by now or her behind should be getting swollen Is this because of the season she is not in heat.and the young doe was born in oct. 23 will she come into heat off season because she was born off season. thank you for your help.

    • Teresa March 11, 2013 at 9:38 pm #

      If he was removed in October, she would be due now and you’d see signs. If she isn’t showing any signs of pregnancy, she probably isn’t bred. The jumping is an indicator that she was in heat. Some goats, especially young ones, can be pretty subtle.

      Goats are cold weather breeders. They begin coming into heat based on the length of the day. In my area, they come into heat in late August. Most of mine seem to quit coming into heat in April. It’s always possible they can come into heat some other time, but it isn’t likely that they will settle.

  35. pat March 31, 2013 at 5:57 pm #

    Very informative! I appreciate all the comments. I think I am about to be the godparent to my first “kid”. Time will tell.

    • Teresa March 31, 2013 at 6:44 pm #

      Good luck! It is wonderful!

  36. Anonymous May 8, 2013 at 10:57 pm #

    I have a doe I thought was due around April 5th… she has had mucus off and on for about 3 weeks. She is a pygmy and is huge this is her first and our first. I am not sure who is more nervous me or her. Thanks for your site it has helped some. It is about to drive my husband crazy because I will not the leave the house, I keep having him pick up a few grocery’s items when he gets off work. I am praying for a kid this week. I can now see how I could of been off 20 something days if I missed her going in heat but we are over 30 days at this point I hope we don’t go into June!!!

    • Teresa May 9, 2013 at 6:45 am #

      Good luck! I do hope everything turns out well. 🙂

  37. Lexie May 12, 2013 at 11:09 pm #

    Hi, I have had goats for a few months now so i’m new at this and I decided to breed them. I have two does, a mom and a daughter, and I just got a buck, but the mom doesn’t seem to like the buck, she always wants to charge at him. But the daughter and the buck seem to like each other. I was wondering if you might know why the older nanny doesn’t like the billy goat? and how long should I leave the other with him? just until she isn’t in heat anymore?.


    • Teresa May 13, 2013 at 7:48 am #

      I sometimes have a hard time answering questions without knowing specifics. I would guess your older does’ dislike of the buck is simply a personality thing. Like people, some get along and some don’t. As far as how long to leave them together, that is entirely up to you and the facilities you have. When I plan spring break kids, I generally only put them together for a couple of days. When I breed for summer, I might leave them together for six or eight weeks.

      That said, goats are known as cool weather breeders. In my midwest area, that means a does isn’t likely to settle in the warmer months. The general rule of thumb around here is that they will breed and settle in months that have an R (September – April). My does generally won’t even come into heat from mid-April until August. It’s possible she will not get bred until fall.

  38. Lexie May 13, 2013 at 12:15 pm #

    ok I have another question, the buck I have I am only borrowing, so do the does only go in to heat if they are around a buck?. Like I said I’m new at having goats and I’ve only had them for about 3 months and I’ve only noticed one of them going into heat once when I first got them.

    • Teresa May 13, 2013 at 12:29 pm #

      No. The does usually start coming into heat in late August. They will cycle approximately ever 21 days until they stop around April. Putting a buck with them will not bring them into heat.

  39. Lexie May 13, 2013 at 12:46 pm #

    Ok, Thanks that’s very useful. And I want you to know that your blog here has helped me with several things so thanks 🙂

    • Teresa May 13, 2013 at 1:19 pm #

      My pleasure. Glad to hear you’ve found some of my posts useful. 🙂

  40. Lexie August 3, 2013 at 5:21 pm #

    Hi, I asked you a question a few months ago about my does. I wanted to make sure I was figuring their due dates right. I got the buck the 10th of may and kept him from the nanny’s until they went into heat, one was the next day and the other was the 12th. I put the first in with the buck when she went into heat and that was on the 11th of may, so she should be due around October 8th, right?. The other doe was put with the buck on October 12th so she should be due around October 9th. Keep in mind that both of the does stayed with the buck for about two weeks, how should I know when they will kid so I can separate them?.

    • Teresa August 3, 2013 at 5:47 pm #

      According to the chart, that would be correct as long as they settled. Sometimes they don’t settle the first time they come into heat.

  41. Hellen Homan August 25, 2013 at 6:24 pm #

    I bought a doe that had been “disbudded” with banding rubbers. Since she was done by a novice and too young she now has a horn and a half. What is the best way to dehorn her since she is now 1 1/2 years old. She was recently bred within the past week. Thanks for your help. Hellen

    • Teresa August 25, 2013 at 7:30 pm #

      It’s hard to dehorn them when they get older. They have a blood well that goes up, so it makes them quite susceptible to infection. You would probably have to have a vet do it.

  42. Dyan September 16, 2013 at 4:11 pm #

    Hi there! Thank you for this info, we are new to goats. We have 3 does and a buck. We moved beginning of August and I think all our does went into cycle that same week. Now they all look fat, but I just found out my daughter has been feeding them 4 flakes a day! So, they are fat, and possibly bred. However, this means babies in January…doesn’t it? What are some extra things that we can do to help keep babies warm during that time? Being our first time with this whole process we can use all the help we can get!

    • Teresa September 16, 2013 at 5:07 pm #

      Insulated buildings help. Heat lamps work, but they are dangerous around animals. I use lots of towels and a blow-drying to dry them when they are born. If all else fails a heated garage or basement or kitchen is an option.

      Good luck.

  43. Maddy September 29, 2013 at 9:36 pm #

    I would love to be able to tell if my goat is pregnant, but with the but being only 10 weeks old and her being 5 years, it is hard. A local breeder did however say she was more than likely pregnant ( with out seeing her ). But it is still really hard to tell!

    • Teresa September 29, 2013 at 9:49 pm #

      Definitely watch and see if she comes back into heat. It’s hard to tell with a buck that young.

  44. Lexie October 14, 2013 at 6:48 pm #

    Hi again, I wanted to thank you for all of your information. Both of my does had their babies, one had twins and the other had triplets. They are all healthy playful little kids to!. Anyway, thank you for the info and advice we had two nannies and three billies Morgan, Billy and lilly, trip, and captain. So thank you for the wonderful advice!.

    • Teresa October 14, 2013 at 6:51 pm #

      So glad to hear everyone did well and you have five healthy kids!

  45. Steve November 4, 2013 at 7:37 am #

    Looks like you are very knowledgeable about goats and their pregnancy’s. We have owned boer goats for over a year now and have learned a lot, but certainly not all. I have 3 does that i took to another farm to have bred. They were with the buck for 45 days (mid August to end of September). The owner said he saw two of them being serviced by the buck, (assumed the third was but he just did not see the event). During the time they were away, I purchased my own buck. Soon after I brought the does home, they appeared to cycle, wagging tails by the fence, making goofy sounds, and the buck really wanted to meet them. First two of them cycled and just recently the third one did. Finally the question: If a doe is pregnant, will she cycle? Also, since they appeared to be cycling, I put each one in with our new buck for a couple days each. Each time the buck immediately did his job, numerous times. Question number two: Will it hurt them to be bred again if they were already bred. Thanks in advance.

    • Teresa November 4, 2013 at 7:41 am #

      Goats are cool weather breeders. In my area that means they are not likely to settle in the summer months (August). I know this year, my does were late to start coming back into heat. It sounds like they did not settle while they were away. A doe won’t come into heat if she’s already bred. Generally speaking, even if she were bred, it wouldn’t hurt her for the buck to breed her again.

      • Steve November 4, 2013 at 8:15 am #

        Thanks, that’s what I thought. I am in Ohio. We try to breed for January kids due to our local fair schedules and the rules for weather’s classes. Looks like we will be having March and April kids this year,hopefully some late fairs will be looking for kids… I do not have to worry about it now, but does transporting and dumping them at another location also affect them being able to settle? I assume it does as it tends to stress them. Last year, when I purchased them from the same farm they were bred in August and had January babies.

      • Teresa November 4, 2013 at 9:32 am #

        Any time they are stressed it can impact their settling. You’ll be glad you have your own buck to breed.

  46. Anonymous November 10, 2013 at 9:38 am #

    Hi we are, Ron & Nadine, in Sunizona, Arizona
    We are very knew to this whole farm thing. However, we jumped and just started swimming. We have over 700 cage / range free laying hens and nine nubian goats. Your info is very helpful, thank you for your assistance.

    • Teresa November 10, 2013 at 10:21 am #

      Glad to hear you find the information useful.

  47. Belinda December 28, 2013 at 5:01 pm #

    I have 3 fullblood boers and there tails r covered in poop. Anytime i have seen them go to the bathroom it has always been normal pellets. Have never seen any diarrea. They r on alfalfa/grass and get sweet feed when we put them up at night. I vaccinated them all 6 weeks ago. Had a vet come out the other day but he didnt seem to do anything said it is the alfalfa, i was wondering if you have any suggestions..also have a year old boer/ nubian that i didnt think was pregnant but trimming her feet today her chacha is alittle puffy is that a sign that she is preggo? Thank u for your time.

    • Teresa December 28, 2013 at 5:06 pm #

      Any time you have diarrhea, I would recommend doing a fecal because of the possibility of worms. Any change in diet can cause diarrhea. It’s possible for them to just be sick with diarrhea (like humans) as well. Alfalfa will not in itself cause diarrhea (unless it is a change in diet).

      Puffiness can be a sign of pregnancy or being in heat, either one.

      • Belinda December 28, 2013 at 5:18 pm #

        I will call the new vet on monday to bring samples n2 them to check. I asked about the puffyness because 2 of the fullbloods r due on jan 16 and their chachas have always been puffy. Was told to add in more minerals to their feed. So we started what the feed store calls trace 90 hope this helps.. Im a first time goat owner and am super nervous with the kidding lol…thank u very much for the super fast response

      • Teresa December 28, 2013 at 5:21 pm #

        I hope it helps. Hard to be too much help from a distance. Hope everything goes well for you!

  48. helene January 7, 2014 at 8:33 pm #

    Very good explanation; thank you!

  49. Anonymous January 25, 2014 at 1:08 pm #

    hi I have a sick female boer goat that is pregnant and she is showing signs that she could have the baby soon her tail is mushy and her vulva is swollen and kinda jutting out what else can I look for to tell how close she is?
    when can I expect it?

  50. Beth March 10, 2014 at 1:28 pm #

    I have a beautiful Alpine who, if bred, this will be her first kidding. She loves having her belly rubbed, so I know for a fact she felt like just nipples against a smooth belly before, and is now building an udder! Yippie! She was exposed to a billy in the middle of November. Im new to goats, and this will be my first time kidding, or rather–midwifing goats. lol. Either way, she doesn’t look pregnant at all just looking at her sides, and I had thought she was open till that udder showed up 2 days ago. Her vulva is extra long, but not poofy, and Im about going crazy over her. My senior doe who should also be expecting within days of my Alpine im not so worried over. This will be her 4th year kidding, although her first time with me, she has always had multiples and never needed assistance (im told) but if she has just one large one I may be in trouble with her. HOW DO YOU HANDLE THE STRESS?!! I’ve been raising rabbits for years and never worried so much about nature taking its course!!

    • Teresa March 10, 2014 at 1:56 pm #

      Experience helps, but I still worry like crazy over my girls. Not much help for you here. I do what I can to get an accurate due date to eliminate the guessing. I also plan them for times that I know I will be around to keep a close eye on them.

      Good luck!

      • Beth March 19, 2014 at 8:50 pm #

        Just thought I’d let you know I was able to feel something rather boney kicking around in my Alpine! Lol. Didn’t even press on her tummy, just had my hand flat against it right in front of her udder and she certainly has one in there, and hopefully two. I’m a stay at home mom so I spend slot of time watching, talking and playing with my girls, they are so much like dogs! Anyway, I’m just gonna keep checking udder development these next couple weeks and be ready when things progress., Thanks so much for your site!!

      • Teresa March 19, 2014 at 8:51 pm #

        Good luck!

  51. Mayia Moonchild March 11, 2014 at 11:27 pm #

    Hi, we live in Oregon. All our goats are Lamanchas. I have a doe that is 1.5 years old that is bred – kid late march early april- Today we bought 2 does that are supposed to be bred and due in June. I am worried about the new girls, they seem very thin and the hair is dull and dirty. They don’t show any signs of worms. They were kept in a barn stall and not let outside at all – The yearling is the daughter of the older doe- They have been left together and never separated but she is still letting her daughter nurse some. Do I need to separate them? – How can I boost there weight and health while the are pregnant?

    • Teresa March 12, 2014 at 6:53 am #

      I would recommend a fecal. Sometimes they can have parasites without seeming to show signs. After that, I would recommend separating them so that it’s not so difficult on the older doe while she’s pregnant to have a kid nursing her. Then look at diet. You have to make changes gradually, but a high quality feed would be in order. HERE is a link about goat diets. It’s from Oregon State, so they would also be able to help you out if there isn’t a local vet to ask some of these questions. I’d talk to someone around you to see if you are in an area that has adequate minerals or if you need to supplement copper or something.

  52. Mayia Moonchild March 17, 2014 at 11:34 pm #

    Thank you for your response. They did have worms and have been wormed. I am feeding a goat feed with 16 percent protein- (grains and alfalfa pellets)- little molasses- also good quality grass hay- they also have browse when its not raining-they hate getting wet. -Fresh,clean water 247

    • Teresa March 18, 2014 at 8:10 am #

      Sounds like you’ve got everything under control! Best wishes!

  53. terry sutton June 3, 2014 at 7:38 am #

    Hi, we are knew to goats, we have LaManchas, just a note to worming. I do not mean this to be an ad, but wanted to mention that we try here on our farm to be as close to organic and natural as possible. Been using an organic wormer and it is scheduled every friday and every six weeks with a wormer containing wormwood. Can’t use this on pregnant does however. We have had very good luck with this and using the FAMANCHa we have seen no signs of parasites, You can even give the wormer to the babies. It also helps with coccidiosis. We have two bucks, both registered of Champion lines this will be there first year to be used for breeding. And have three does, one maybe bred, we used hormones to bring her in. Wanted at least one does that was off season. She is a little puffy, only 30 days bred, so guess will have to watch and see. One that had twin bucks in March, that we are milking and one that is a first timer she will be bred this fall hope. Also Have two young doelings. Maybe bred this fall as well, depending on how they look, Although both look very healthy right now. Just thought I would say Hi, and mention the herbal wormer. Thanks for the good info.

  54. karen August 23, 2014 at 11:46 pm #

    ok, goat people on FB, I think my 3 yr old La Mancha goat might be PG, I do not have a billy ? we live on a small farm in Ellensburg and yes there are deer and other goats kinda close by but I have never seen any in my pasture! She looks like she swallowed two basketballs and has a bag full of milk, her tummy is tight and no, there does not seem to be any infection? I am baffled! We actually milked her last night, and she has never had a kid? Ideas, thoughts? My other female goat is normal? So confused?
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    • Teresa August 24, 2014 at 8:23 am #

      Ask a vet. It’s possible she has a false pregnancy. I have heard rumors of them being bred by other species, but this is not typical.

  55. Harriet Miller November 4, 2014 at 8:41 pm #

    I find this helpful this is the first experence having a goat and going threw pregency.

    • Teresa November 4, 2014 at 9:10 pm #

      Thanks. I hope everything goes well for you.

  56. Justin November 23, 2014 at 6:01 pm #

    I have been told another way to see if a goat is bred is feeling the bottom of the belly. If its tight or hard rather than soft its a good indication. Is this true ?

    • Teresa November 23, 2014 at 6:03 pm #

      I have not heard that one. I think it would depend on how far along they are and how full the rumen and bladder are.

  57. Anonymous December 17, 2014 at 3:17 pm #

    My one goat was hopefully bred last week. However, I went to feed her today and noticed dried red-ish/ brown stuff on her vulva. What do this mean? This is my first year breeding and I was concerned.

    • Teresa December 17, 2014 at 5:25 pm #

      A lot of time after they are bred, they’ll have a discharge about a week later. They’ll do that after giving birth too.

  58. Anonymous December 17, 2014 at 6:06 pm #

    So it is nothing to be concerned about?

    • Teresa December 17, 2014 at 6:10 pm #

      I can make no guarantees. I’m not a vet, and I’m not seeing what you are talking about. It is common that they will have that goopy discharge shortly after being bred. If it’s only been a week, it would be too early for any type of “miscarriage” with any visible discharge.

  59. Anonymous December 17, 2014 at 6:11 pm #

    Ok so it is nothing to worry about? Also, I have a goat that has double teats, so in the place where should have one she has two, I know this is a common defect, but will it interfere with milk product. She is a boer.

    • Teresa December 17, 2014 at 6:32 pm #

      From what you’ve said, I wouldn’t worry. Watch to see if she comes back in heat in two weeks. Then you’ll know whether or not she settled.

      Two teats will do nothing with milk production, and it usually isn’t a problem for kids to nurse; however, it can make it difficult to milk her. Depending on the teat formation, it can also damage them causing blood in the milk.

  60. samantha j phillips December 22, 2014 at 7:58 pm #

    Hi! Thank you for your post. I just bought a nigerian dwarf tonight. They say she is “due any day” I’ve never helped with kidding before… Any advice would be welcome. I live in KS so it’s pretty cold out right now. She has had two batches before. Her first time she had triplets, her second time she had a single. They say she was bred to a black cashmere buck. She has been holding her tail curled up since we got her home. How do I tell when exactly she will kid? How do I tell when she’s done. I’d hate to miss the birth or to think she’s done and leave before she is! Please, any advice is welcome!!!

    • Teresa December 22, 2014 at 8:21 pm #

      Just like humans, there is no way to know exactly when they will kid. I did a couple of posts HERE and HERE that might help you recognize signs. Here is what is it supposed to look like when it goes perfectly. With the cold weather it is very important to make sure she is in a nice warm place or someone is right there to help dry it off and warm it up. You’ll know she is done when she passes the placenta. This can take an hour or so after the last kid. Good luck!

      • samantha j phillips December 22, 2014 at 10:44 pm #

        Thanks! I just read through them =D Is there only one placenta then? The lady I got her from kinda worried me, she said the goats have to have a person’s help otherwise all the babies will die. I’m scared to death that I will miss it some how and cause all the babies to die…I’m praying it will all go great and during the day 😉 Thanks for replying so fast!!!!

      • Teresa December 22, 2014 at 10:49 pm #

        Each baby will be in their own bag, but there will be only one placenta. It is quite common for them to need help. If you see that stringy wet stuff hanging from where the bag broke, they should give birth within a few minutes. If they don’t, you should check for position. HERE is a post on common positions. I do check my girls every three hours or sooner around the clock when we are kidding. Have fun!

      • samantha j phillips December 22, 2014 at 10:52 pm #

        Ok I’ll make sure to do that then! Thanks for all the help

  61. Sbart January 3, 2015 at 8:27 pm #

    I had my 2 boer goats bred about a month ago and my one doe is presenting yellow/white/ redish bumps or sores on her vulva. I looked up some cause and none of them had pictures that were spot on. She is eating, drinking, and going to the bathroom normally. The only thing that seems to be wrong is the bumps. Any idea what it could be? She has had them for a couple of days.

    • Teresa January 3, 2015 at 8:39 pm #

      It could be sore mouth. I had that with my girls. Hard to tell without seeing. Is there a vet that can look at them?

      • Sbart January 4, 2015 at 3:38 pm #

        Yes, I have a vet in the area that can look at them. If she is breed, do you think this could abort her babies?

      • Teresa January 4, 2015 at 4:36 pm #

        If it is sore mouth, that will not impact her pregnancy, but it can be transmitted to humans. Wash hands.

        I don’t know what would cause this otherwise, especiallly in the winter months.

  62. Tammy January 24, 2015 at 6:15 am #

    Hi Teresa, a great article, thank you for posting, unfortunately you have such an awesome following, with so many questions from so many people, that I admit that I couldn’t keep up, so the answers to my questions may already be given, so please excuse me asking again if this is true. I live in North QLD Australia and I just bought two Kalahari Reds. From a breeder about an hours drive away, she sold them via Facebook to me and didn’t mention that one was about to be señora ted from her billy goat kid and that the other one may have already bred. So I have a question about both if I may. After 24 hours. One of my goats ( Pippy) was showing signs of have a very ful udder, and I worried about things like mastitis, so I flew into action and put a goat milking bail together to try and milk her to give her relief, I told the owners who were not happy, saying that they aren’t milking goats, but I could not see the difference, she had a full udder? Anyway, because of their reaction to. Y milking her, I did not try the milk, I case it was not palatable for humans until I did as much research as possible, but there was really nothing about milking for human consumption from breeds other than milking goats, so I decided to try it and it was lovely! So I have gone from milking her to relieve her of discomfort, to milking her twice a day to get her Mike supply back up and using it for our selfs, is this ok, or not recommended for some reason? The other question I have about my other goat, is they said when I picked her up, that there was a chance that she had bred and she does seem quite round, my partner and I had a feel of her tummy today and it definately felt like there was kicking going on in there, could you tell me, if she is pregnant, how far along in the pregnancy would she. E to have the baby kicking inside her, Your answer to this would be much appreciated, as I would like to have a better set up for mum and kid when it/ they are arrive, cheers, Tammy.

    • Teresa January 24, 2015 at 10:10 am #

      Two separate things here. You can milk any goat and drink/use their milk. The main difference between dairy and meat goats is quantity of milk and fat content. However, you do need to let them dry up before having kids again so they can produce colostrum.

      As far as being bred, your best bet would be to ask the people you got her from. I always try to watch my girls to know when they come into heat and get bred. If you get no help from them, it is useful to know they have a five month gestation period. HERE are some things to watch to see if she’s getting close.

      Good luck!

  63. Belinda February 4, 2015 at 7:46 am #

    Great article as we are new to this. After breeding when do we separate the male from the females?

    • Teresa February 4, 2015 at 12:35 pm #

      It probably depends on how they get along. My bucks are really pushy around food, so I don’t want them with the girls once that start getting past a couple of months.

  64. srtibbs February 18, 2015 at 4:21 pm #

    I feel foolish even asking this but: I am new with goats and one of my co-workers has had them for years. She insists that some goats can go into heat even after bein bred. This seems weird to me, and honestly a lot of the advice she gives has just seemed WRONG. But…just in case… can this happen? I ask because I KNOW my girls were both bred but they seem to still be going into heat. Does this mean my billy is probably sterile? I spent a ton on him so I’ll be very upset if he is 😦

    Thanks and wonderful article!

    • Teresa February 18, 2015 at 7:06 pm #

      I will speak in general. Typically a goat does not come back into heat if they are bred. However, that doesn’t mean there aren’t any hormones that a buck might react to. I’m not sure what they are doing that makes you think they are in heat, but I have a couple of goats that I never know if they’re in heat. If you really need to know if they are bred, you can have a vet do an ultrasound if they are far enough along. I know there are also blood pregnancy tests you can do. If you’re worried about the buck, the vet would also be able to do a semen check to tell you if he’s okay. Even if they aren’t bred, there are things besides the buck that might make them not settle. Basically, I’m no help to you.

  65. Kellie March 17, 2015 at 7:55 pm #

    Hi! I had a question. I have a “pregnant” Pygmy. She was living with a male so I’m not sure how far along. She has udders (not tight yet) a swollen vulva and a large belly. She’s around 2-3 years old and this would be her 1st kid. She’s had those signs for weeks (3-4). I have felt and felt for kicks but I haven’t felt anything. Could this be a false pregnancy? All the research I have found says I should feel the kids by now considering the signs of gestation…. Am I right? This is my 1st set of goats so I’m just not sure. She was at the vets for pneumonia last week and she said she definitely looked pregnant but my husband took her so I’m not sure if she actually felt the babies or just going off of what she looks like. Her ligaments are still solid also. I guess I’m just trying to figure out when and if babies will be arriving?! 🙂

    • Teresa March 17, 2015 at 8:08 pm #

      It’s virtually impossible to guess by looking. Some show those signs early and others don’t hardly show until they are due. Ligaments are a good clue as to when they are close. Also, her teats will probably point out right before she kids as her milk drops. They will also drop, and she might look a bit dented in right in front of her hip bone. It’s really hard to tell though. If she’s been running with a buck, she is most likely bred. False pregnancies really don’t occur that often.

  66. Lacey henslee March 31, 2015 at 10:34 am #

    My pygmy doe has been bleeding for two days its not a lot her teets look full. I just got her Thursday and they were already full and thought she had already had babies. I’m worried do you have any ideas on what might be causing the bleeding?

    • Teresa March 31, 2015 at 10:52 am #

      Contact a vet would be my advice.

      • Anonymous April 4, 2015 at 9:03 pm #

        I have a few questions and pics. My die has been with the male since nov never saw her bred always tried to pay attention to the heat cycle but very unsure. A few months ago she had just a few drops of blood nothing else. Showed no signs of acting weird she was normal. Just a few days ago she’s popped out just like that. She’s forming teets. They have never sagged before. I’m taking her to the vet Monday but scared she’s further along then I think if she’s pregnant. I was told when the few drops of blood happened that she was in heat. Now I’m told the blood was pregnant. I can’t see where to post the pics

      • Teresa April 4, 2015 at 9:47 pm #

        There is no way to post pictures in the comments on my blog. It sounds like you are doing the right thing by talking to the vet. They will be much better at answering your questions than me since they will be able to examine your doe. Good luck!

  67. Christina Butler August 2, 2015 at 11:54 pm #

    Hi i have a goat looks like she is in labor but she doesnt have any milk in her utter it looks dry but it also looks like she is pushing but she is also crying her little heart out i just dont know when the milk comes in or not is it like dogs sometimes it comes in early or later when the give birth or a month before please i need help.

    • Teresa August 3, 2015 at 8:12 am #

      Call a vet. If she is crying and pushing she needs immediate help.

  68. Tanja August 20, 2015 at 10:51 am #

    Can a goat come into heat even if she is pregnant?
    Because I got 2 female goats which are suppose to be pregnant: (Im new to this! ):
    Well in March we got a billy goat and had him for a month but we never saw anything really. So we thought he must had done something during the night or so.
    But now, this month, they should be kidding. We did get our buck back too and they are all going crazy. And he has been jumping all over them ( Were trying to stop him!) . So are they or not? They do look pregnant and right now they are swollen and all that…

    • Teresa August 20, 2015 at 12:07 pm #

      Typically speaking, a goat will not come into heat if she is bred. It’s impossible for me to make a guess what is going on with so little information. I’m not sure what you mean by “swollen.” At this point, they should be making an udder if they are pregnant. Oftentimes, (in my part of the world) the girls don’t really come into heat in the hot summer months, and they would just now be starting to cycle again. Even if they are bred and you just introduced a buck, the girls will have a lot of hormones with the pregnancy.

  69. Mallory September 18, 2015 at 9:43 pm #

    U think my goat is pregnant but she will not let me go anywhere near her belly. She won’t even let me touch her head. Any suggestions?

    • Teresa September 19, 2015 at 8:16 am #

      I’m not sure what to say. Sorry I’m no help.

  70. jan October 4, 2015 at 10:53 am #

    Hi I am new to your goat site! Real nice! I have a mini that just rocks my world! I love her! One of her udders had mastitis a couple years back. She has never been around a buck, she is a companion to my mini horse Peter, yet she has milk. Poor thing, I noticed she was pulling on her udders and they looked a lot bigger than they used to. I have milked her for the last 2 days and they sure look like they need it again today. She isn’t crazy about it either! My aim is getting better tho, I always seemed to squirt milk in my husbands shoe. I wasn’t sure if goats need to be milked even if they have not been exposed, but the article I read from you eased my worried mind. She’s not meat, not for milk, just one of the best and quirkiest pets I have ever owned! Thanks again! I will look here for more advise!

  71. AngdK November 15, 2015 at 6:01 am #

    Thank you for this article! I have a doe that is very demure in showing signs of being in heat. I brought home a buck today and tethered him for a little bit while I was working in his pen. My doe was dancing all around him with her tail flagging and ultimately I saw them breed, which is my hope. Would this behavior indicate she was in heat or do does want to breed regardless? Thanks for you thought!

    • Teresa November 15, 2015 at 7:42 am #

      Generally speaking, the doe wants nothing to do with the buck other than when she’s in heat.

  72. Anney December 5, 2015 at 12:24 am #

    I love your articles! I have a 2 year old alpine/nubian doe and an 10 month old nubian buck. ( they are Mike and Molly ) I’m reasonably sure they have bred. If so she is around 3 months (due in Feb) Recently her milk has dwindled to nothing, is this normal? Should I stop milking completely for now? Thank you so much for the information you provide! It helps so much.

    • Teresa December 5, 2015 at 7:34 pm #

      A lot of goats will dry up on their own. It’s best to let them completely dry up so they can make colostrum for new kids.

  73. Sekiti Richard December 26, 2015 at 8:05 am #

    Thanks its all helpful

  74. Krista Cochran December 30, 2015 at 8:12 am #

    I have a very pregnant goat Due Jan,3rd that is displaying buck noises and jesters to another female goat.I have never had this happen before so was wandering if anyone knows why.She has been ultrasounded and she is pregnant with 3 I am totally confused.

    • Teresa December 30, 2015 at 12:08 pm #

      I have a couple of does that will act bucky around other girls in heat. With her hormones going crazy, I would assume that’s all it is.

  75. Fozia December 31, 2015 at 12:35 pm #

    Dear Mam,
    My goat is expecting about 4 and a half months but their is not any significant
    sign of kidding except her round body and strict behaviour. Remember its her first time breeding.How long i will wait

    • Teresa December 31, 2015 at 1:53 pm #

      Well, the average gestation is about 150 days. It’s hard to say.

    • Tina December 31, 2015 at 9:48 pm #

      Our experience is that you will suddenly notice the milk bag looking really full, and one really good sign is to gently squeeze around her tail bone area and when it is really easy to wrap your thumb and pointer around it, she is extremely close to delivery. That might not make great sense (easier to show than describe), but that is one of our best tell tale signs. Be sure that her water does not freeze as we lost one of our girls last time after she had delivered in the night and her water had froze. You should have about 2 weeks left sounds like.c

  76. Fauzia January 7, 2016 at 4:21 am #

    Dear Mam,
    My goat is pregnant and her behaviour has changed.She is wagging her tail and stepping her feets on floor.Is her delivery close?

  77. Nasir February 3, 2016 at 1:21 am #

    Hello Eden,
    I read post really helpful.please help me about my doe her name is Rani
    Rani kidded two kids male female on 26th oct2015 I sold kids after 40 days and Rani was in heat on 27 dec 2015 she was bred by buck same day in front of me after 14 days again she was in heat with white neither watery nor milky discharge buck tried many times but Rani refused to bred after six days Rani again with white discharge also crying as she need buck flagging tail not too much I again put her with buck same story she refused to breed and this is happening till now she is with white mucus discharge crying as it seems for buck but not intererested to breed by buck what should I do .
    Do I assume she is prenant? Im from Pakistan waiting ur reply with thanks

    • Teresa February 3, 2016 at 2:12 pm #

      I really can’t offer much help. It does sound like you might want to contact a veterinarian.

  78. rayan February 28, 2016 at 7:03 pm #

    mam,I really need help my doe was pregnant but she abort after one month and after 15 days she was again bred and again aborted after one month I don’t know what’s problem with her now she is again in heat after 7 days of abortion and very active heat with flagging,white discharge,restless should I bred her that early

    • Teresa February 28, 2016 at 7:23 pm #

      No. Don’t breed her right away. Let her body heal.

  79. Umair March 8, 2016 at 3:41 am #

    Dear Teresa I bought a first timer last March, she gave birth in April, in October she bred again but no sign of pregnancy (neither gave birth nor in heat again). I took her to a Billy 3 weeks back he mounted her but she was not willing what are the chances of her pregnancy?

  80. Emma March 9, 2016 at 10:02 pm #

    Could you post a chart for the heat??? One that we can edit and print??? That’d be nice…

  81. Rosario Martin March 24, 2016 at 10:03 pm #

    Thanks for the info, we are not sure if our whitey our goat is expecting but she look like to me. but now with all this I can check for new signs. Thanks

  82. Sandy C. Priest March 30, 2016 at 4:50 pm #

    I believe my alpine is bred. She is puffy. And is already producing milk. Her eyes went cloudy like pink eye about a week ago. And they are red and watery like pink eye. Is it safe to use an antibiotic eye spray? And if she is lactating, but not as full as your picture, does this mean she has more time? and will bag up more?

    • Teresa March 30, 2016 at 7:41 pm #

      I have no idea. I would contact a vet. It’s hard to tell due date by udder size. Weather, age, and other factors can impact that.

  83. Kialie May 1, 2016 at 1:01 am #

    My goat has started making the udder at about 2 1/2- 3 months along. Can this happen? She has the round shape and I can even feel babies. She’s also going to the bathroom a lot, like there’s something poking her there, and her personality’s changed a little. This is her second time kidding and she’s three years old

    • Teresa May 1, 2016 at 8:02 am #

      I suppose anything is possible. If you didn’t see her in heat, she may have been bread earlier too. It seems like every goat and pregnancy is different.

      • Kialie May 2, 2016 at 5:10 pm #

        Thank you! This is our second kidding and we have a buck with low fertility, so we ran him with the herd of does. Big mistake, but the only one he could get pregnant is this doe, who miscarried because we had an aggression issue with one of our does (dealt with, but a very sad loss for both her and us). He ended up impregnating her again, probably soon after the miscarriage, as I’ve heard and witnessed after-kidding heats. The making of the udder couldn’t possibly be from the miscarriage, could it? It did happen 2 1/2 months after she had it.

      • Teresa May 2, 2016 at 5:14 pm #

        Don’t know. If she got bred that soon after, her body could be confused with all the hormones. Hard to say. Might check with your vet.

  84. Annie June 30, 2016 at 2:50 pm #

    Hello there, we recently got two does, from different people, the one we are guessing is around 4 years old, they thought she might be pregnant, she is pretty thin. Is there a way to tell?
    The other one came with a buckling, he is about 5 month’s old, I milk the doe, but we think she might be pregnant, i think she is Boar Nubian mix, she is a chubby one, although her stomach is not that big, she has her tail up and straight back, and I thought i felt movement on her left day im sure she is pregnant, the next i find myself doubting,
    We are very new at this goat thing lol
    I would really like to know, I don’t want to dry her up if she is not pregnant, but don’t want to keep milking if she is. And then there is feed, I know she needs extra nutrition if pregnant.
    Any advice?

    Also how old does a buck have to be to service a grown doe?

    Thanks in advance.

    • Teresa June 30, 2016 at 3:46 pm #

      There is a blood test that can be done. I’m not sure where you would send the blood. Your vet might know. Your vet could also do an ultrasound or x-ray to try to see if she is bred. I would definitely see about doing a fecal for parasites if she’s thin. Goats are highly susceptible to worms. The goat’s rumen is located on the goat’s left side, so you might be feeling her rumen move rather than kids. It’s hard to tell. Young bucks mature very quickly. They can breed a doe when quite young. If he can reach and she’s come into heat, it’s likely he has bred her. It’s best to separate the bucks from the does by the time they are three months old, or as soon as they are weaned.

      • Annie July 2, 2016 at 11:39 pm #

        Thank you, I have had them separated ever since I brought them home, it’s so frustrating not knowing, I am in south america, so things like altrasound/blood tests are not as easley done, I’m waiting to hear back from a vet, to see if we can do it trough blood work.
        I also bought a 4 month old female, I noticed that she has a slight udder developing, does this mean a pregnancy is a posability? Or is this just part of development?
        Lol I have 101 questions, n I keep coming across your site, it has bin very helpful already.

      • Teresa July 3, 2016 at 7:34 am #

        It’s most likely just a part of development. Good luck! Worm testing will be a really big thing, and you can do those easily at home with a microscope and a float solution you make with water and epsom salts. Should be able to get those items on-line.

  85. Ashli July 22, 2016 at 8:21 pm #

    My doe was bred July 7-9th and was definately in heat. She has had diacharge since then, is this normal? Does it mean she is pregnant? Normal temp and no odor with discharge

    • Teresa July 23, 2016 at 5:51 pm #

      With no odor, it would probably be normal. Seems like that is common a bit after being bred. Don’t know whether she settled or not, but it would be a good sign she was bred.

  86. Roxanna October 29, 2016 at 6:29 pm #

    I have not had a vet check.. But I know for a fact that when she was in heat last month about 3-4 weeks ago.. Billy mounted her several times..
    I am wondering if she should have milk in her utters by now..?

  87. Carleen February 3, 2017 at 1:51 pm #

    When it’s the doe”s first time bred do you believe she is about 1 month out once her udiet starts to show?

    • Teresa February 3, 2017 at 2:19 pm #

      It’s hard to say. I assume you mean her udder? In cold weather, their milk will sometimes not drop until just before they kid. It depends on each doe also. Udder is not always the best way to tell how far out they are. Often, especially with first time moms, their teats will seem to suddenly point out right before they kid.


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