Cold Weather Crisis
You go out to the barn to set out some hay and notice one of the kids is laying down. Just as you’re thinking how cute it is, you realize it’s not moving much, or perhaps it’s shivering or is tilted on its side. Maybe you arrive for the worst case scenario: seizures.
Newborns and young kids can be at the mercy of the elements. If you find a kid in any of these states and the temperatures are cold, grab that baby and get it to the house. Is its body cool to the touch? Is its temperature below 102 degrees? If so, it’s hypothermic and you’d better do something quickly or you’re likely to lose it.
Hypothermia can take a kid within a couple of hours. Once its body temperature begins to drop, it can’t produce enough energy to maintain vital functions. Like hypothermia in humans, the goat will get sleepy, drift off and die. So if your kid appears to be hypothermic, get it inside and get it warm.
Molasses or Karo syrup will help to raise its blood sugar so dip your finger in one of those and stick it in the kid’s mouth. If there’s a suck reflex, excellent; if not, smear it on the kid’s tongue. As it dissolves in saliva, it’ll be ingested. Regular pancake syrup can be used in a pinch but you’re really better off if you have molasses.
Find a box of some sort to put the baby in. Fill gallon jugs with heated water, wrap the kid in a towel and place the jugs on either side of it. This will help to warm it up more quickly. Rub its sides and extremities. Stimulation can help it to awaken and helps with blood flow. If you use a space heater, stay in attendance. A drowsy kid won’t know it’s being overheated and could get burned. If you don’t see results fairly quickly, call the vet.
Once the kid is becoming aware, get some milk into it. Tube it if the suck reflex isn’t there. You can literally bring a kid back from the brink of death by taking simple but timely steps: warm it up, wake it up and get it fed so it can keep itself warm.