On Saturday, March 9th, one of our goats gave birth to identical twin girls. She was a first time mom. But one baby was smaller than the other. She was weak and couldn’t stand up after birth .We named the big big one Bella and the small one Carly.
For those who don’t know much about goats, if there are twins the mom will sometimes favor the bigger one. This is what happened with Carly and Bella. Button (the mom) absolutely loves Bella. But because Carly was weak, she sorta abandoned her.
We were able to milk some colostrum (milk with important antibiotics for the baby) out of Button and give it to Carly. She lived though the night.
The next dau was Sunday and it was my day to help with children’s ministry at church. Carly seemed fine, so me and my dad went to church leaving my mom and my siblings at home in case of a emergency.
Just after the service started, my dad got a phone call. Carly was dying in my mom’s arms. We rushed out and drove home proably breaking a couple speed limits. When we got home She was too cold and hungry and fading. My mom had been force-feeding her with a syringe. I took my baby sister as my mom and dad went in the shed to help Carly. She survived and was back to normal
She still couldn’t stand. We milked Button so I could bottlefeed Carly. We bought a nipple from the feed store and a water bottle
Every two to four hours we would check on her and feed her. She was able to stand but she couldn’t stand up by herself.
By the end of the day she was okay and we left her in the shed for the night.
I woke up at three in the morning to check on her. My dad came and we found her almost dead again.We grabbed her and rushed in the house. We didn’t know it at the time but she had hypothermia (or birth chill) since she was a preemie and her mom wouldn’t accept her and keep her warm/
We feed her milk and tried to keep her awake. She was floppy and kept wanting to put her head down. At on point her eyes started to lull back. I’ve seen a duck do the same thing before she died.
She eventually was warm enough to sleep. I watched over her for an hour, often rubbing her to make sure she was staying warm.
I woke up again at seven to feed her again. She was doing very well and was crying for milk. She couldn’t suckle though because of her hypothermia. She almost stood up which was great.
After an hour or two, she fell asleep in my arms for her nap. At noon we took her outside to go see her sister and mom. Bella was happy to she her. I fed Carly outside and Bella curled up against my leg. She was doing great and even took two steps. We though she would be fine out there, napping next to her sister in the hay bucket, so I went up to the house.
When I checked on her again she was sleeping sprawled out.(goats normally sleep curled up.) We quickly took her into the house. But it was too much for her. She started to fade and become less lifeless. I would feed her and she’d just fall back asleep. I also had to hold her head up to feed her. We didn’t realize this till that night that we weren’t feeding her enough. We started feeding her with the syringe every two hours.
At the third nighttime feeding, I forgot to check on her before warming the milk.
I filled the syringe and held up her head.
But she didn’t respond.
Her eyes stayed closed.
I set her head down and rubbed her body. No breath.
I began shaking her. Maybe she’s not actually dead but fast asleep.
But she had passed away. Carly was dead.
And I started to cry.
I remember how I’d play with her ears. They were long like her nubain dad but folded like her mom’s ears. One flopped down and the other stayed up. We planed to take her in the car with us to choir for her feedings. I were going to keep her for my pet.
I got to name her. Carly means small champion, which I think fits her perfectly.
It’s been three days. I’m not bursting into tears at the thought of her but writing this post is making my eyes water. The other day I was cuddling with Bella as my brothers finished the duck chores. And I started to think about how I held Carly. And how thin she was. I started to cry again.
I’m not a very emotional person. I don’t cry when a character dies in a book or tear up at a happy moment in my life but I still get teary eyes if I think about Carly.
But in my little sisters words ‘We’ve still got Bella’ and she is doing fabulous.