Friday started off as any typical day, morning chores where done so we
decided with such beautiful weather we would take the boat out and do
some fishing. We had a great day on the ocean and returned home around
As always when returning home from an outing the first
thing I do is a check on Mothers and new cria. Upon my entrance into
the barn I saw a newborn cria laying lifeless in the hay with membranes
still covering his face. Immediately my heart sunk and I flew over the
railing, when I touched him he was cool, not breathing and had no
pulse. Mom was a first time mom and she was very distraught.
was not hopeful at all but instincts kicked in and I cleared the
membranes off his face and then swung him upside down to clear any
fluid that might be in his lungs. I then began CPR and mouth to mouth.
After a couple of minutes he gasped his first breath. At first I
couldn't believe it but it was actually him coming to life. Not only
was mom standing over my shoulder watching me but twenty other alpacas
witnessed this miracle with me.
I continued working on him until
his breathing was at a regular rate, dried him up and put a coat on to
help get his temperature up. I put him in a stall and proceeded to
focus on mom and getting her in with her new son.
adrenaline pumping from what just happened I looked at mom and realized
not only was the placenta hanging she had a prolapsed uterus. The
uterus was hanging about a foot out from her body. I got her into the
stall with her new son and then ran in to call the vet. I got my vets
voice mail and when he didn't call back in 10 minutes I knew I needed a
back up plan so I put a call out to my secondary vet.
I was on the phone with her in 10 minutes and she said she would come
but it would take her a while so in the mean time I was to keep the
uterus as clean as possible, rinse with clean water and coat it with
sugar. Sugar helps shrink the size making it easier to put back. While
waiting for the vet I worked at getting this new little miracle baby
nursing and was successful. I am still amazed when I think how quickly
he bounded back to life. Mom was very cooperative despite how
uncomfortable she was. She also let me milk her to get more milk for
the little guy.
When the vet arrived she too was amazed at the
cria and how he had rebounded. While mom was lying down she made her
first attempt at replacing the uterus without success. Mom was still
contracting and would put it out as the vet was trying to get it back
in. We decided to give mom a little sedation to help relax her and then
make another attempt in a standing position. If that was not going to
work then off to Tufts University we would have to go for surgery.
second miracle happened when she got the uterus in and it stayed. The
vet then sutured her vulva closed and she was started on antibiotics
and Banamine for pain and inflammation. The next 12-24 hours were
critical. I stayed in the barn for most of the night making sure the
cria was nursing and that mom was not trying to expel the uterus. I am
happy to say both mom and her son are doing wonderful, better than any
of us expected. Mom is not totally out of the woods yet but we are all
very optimistic. Her sutures will be removed tomorrow and the
antibiotics will continue for the rest of the week. Providing no
complications she'll be good as new. the jury is still out on the new
little guys name but I promise you it will be a special one. Here is a
picture of this bundle of joy.
Over the weekend we spent some time getting our Vegetable and Herb garden ready for the quickly approaching growing season. The garden is roughly 45ft x 20ft, with a total area of 800 sq ft usable planting area (minusing the edging and pathways). This will be our 3rd year keeping a fairly decent sized garden, considering it is more a hobby for us than anything else and we are really excited about it.
Hopefully in the next 4 weeks we will be able to start transplanting some hardy seedlings, we will certainly keep you all posted on our little side project!
A friend of ours pointed out that there are some wonderful videos on YouTube that help explain in plain english the most important aspects of gardening, here is a great example:
Basic Gardening: How and Why you should all Compost - You can find a ton more videos here - http://www.youtube.com/results?search_query=gardening&search=tag