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  • Writer's pictureConstance Wilmoth

Can we catch a break?

Last time I wrote I left off with our beautiful foundation doe fighting for her life and hospitalized at OSU. We tried an experimental treatment of Sodium Iodide in order to break up her walled off pneumonia. We were all aware that it was possible that this could make her sicker before making her better, but we were all hopeful that this would be the treatment that she needed in order to recover and come home to her family. We decided to drive down to see her on Friday, after dropping her off Thursday because we knew this last ditch effort could possibly make her worse, so we wanted to be able to visit her and say goodbye if this treatment did go horribly wrong.

We stopped to get her bananas and brought her favorite German horse muffin treats and other goat treats she loved. When we got to her, she looked so sad, with her oxygen, but as soon as she saw us she showed that she still had life in her, wanting to get out of her stall, talking softly to us and even eating a whole banana. We spent quite some time with her, petting her, kissing her and feeding her hay. She was gingerly eating one strand of hay at a time. After about an hour in the stall with her she went over to a corner and laid down, with Rob petting her, she closed her eyes and fell asleep. We actually worried that she had passed away in front of us, because she was so soundly asleep. After a few hours we had to leave in order to come home to care for our other animals. She got up and called to us as we left and I told her I would see her soon. Saturday morning OSU called and reported she did well overnight even eating all of her grain that was left out for her, so we were hopeful that she was turning the corner and we would be able to bring her home.

Sunday morning OSU called and woke me up, they wanted to let me know how poorly Momma had done overnight, she had stood most of the night and was breathing heavily using her sides looking absolutely miserable. The vet recommended that we let her go, as she did not believe her chances of recovery were possible. We asked if they could turn the oxygen up and give her an hour to see if that was able to make her more comfortable. Sadly when they reported back she was unchanged, so we were given the option of sedating her, or putting her down. The option of sedation would possibly cause her to stop breathing or putting her down. At this point we thought the kindest thing we could do for her was to put her down. With much anguish we have them vets at OSU the go ahead to put our beloved Momma to sleep to let her fly high without pain. It was by far the hardest decision we had to make. We actually had cancelled our baby moon that we were supposed to leave for Saturday morning because we did not want to be away while Momma was so sick.

We are still grieving her loss and the barn does not feel the same without her, we miss her dearly. This is truly the hardest part of owning goats. I have been beating myself up, wondering what if I did this sooner or differently, if she would have been able to make it. I hope none of you ever have to go through this same thing. Take care and I hope you have better luck goating than I have had lately.

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