Gemma came into her second heat this past week. As luck would have it, this was the weekend for Open Studios in Easthampton, which is our busiest soap-sales weekend of the year. Fortunately, with the help of the good doctor, we were able to manipulate the timing so that we could breed her on Friday.
As a side note, goats have a relatively short window for breeding. They start coming into heat in the fall and will go in and out of heat every 21 days into mid-winter, or until they are pregnant. The cycle lasts for three days, but the actual breeding window is only about six hours. This window can be manipulated somewhat with an injection of Lutalyse. It helps to have an onsite veterinarian to get the dosage and timing just right.
Our window of opportunity was 8-11am Friday morning. We found an acceptable Saanan breeder three hours away. So, at 4:30am, Gemma and I hopped in the truck for rendezvous with her date in New York.
Initially, Gemma wanted nothing to do with the huge nasty smelling buck that greeted us when we arrived at the Patina Dairy Goat farm. She didn’t seem to care that he was 2012 ‘Best Buck’. I thought we had missed the breeding window, and that I had driven three hours for nothing. But a little coaxing got the two to mix it up, and we hopefully had a successful breeding. Ten minutes later, we hopped back into the truck for the three hour drive home.
We will know in 21 days if Gemma is pregnant. Hopefully, she will not come back into heat. If we were successful, her due date is April 29!