Are you wondering how to tell if a goat is pregnant? Are you dreaming of fluffy newborn goats and fresh goat milk?!
It can be tricky sometimes to determine if you have a pregnant goat or not. But knowing what to look for will make it much easier! These six signs will help you to know if baby goats are in your future!
How To Tell If A Goat Is Pregnant – 7 Signs
Breeding goats can be very frustrating sometimes!
Sometimes it can be difficult to tell for sure if your doe is pregnant. But these seven signs will make it a lot easier!
Also, to learn more about breeding, pregnancy, kid care, and everything else you need to know to care for your goats, check out the Raising Goats For beginners Course! This course has step by step lessons, videos and PDFs for everything from goat illnesses, feeding, milking, you name it! It will help you to raise your goats with confidence, as well as provide a group for personal help and support!
Goat Pregnancy Signs
1. The doe doesn’t come back into heat
This is the main sign to look for when trying to decide if your goat is bred.
A doe’s heat cycle will last approximately 21 days. So every 21 days, give or take a few days, your doe will come back into heat.
If you aren’t sure how to tell if your doe is in heat, then please read my post 10 Signs That Your Dairy Goat Is In Heat.
So, if you doe comes into heat and you put her with the buck, and three weeks later she doesn’t come into heat again, then she should be bred.
I would continue to monitor her for a couple of cycles to be sure that she is truly bred and doesn’t have another heat.
Now, something that can occasionally happen is that your doe will appear to be in heat, and then a week later come into heat again!
This is very frustrating, and you might be wondering how this is even possible!
Sometimes when a doe is first coming into heat at the beginning of the breeding season she will have a false heat.
Being around a buck can trigger a false heat as her body is trying to get ready to breed.
Whenever I see any symptoms of heat and I’m trying to breed a doe, I immediately put her with the buck.
I had a doe once appear to come into heat every week for three to four weeks before she finally became pregnant!
She would come into heat and I would be so sure that she was bred, and then a week later it would start all over again!
So keep monitoring your does daily until you are confident that they are pregnant.
Also, as a side note, be sure to write down the date that you believe your doe was bred! Trust me, when it comes close to delivery time you will want to know that date!
2. Being more aggressive
This doesn’t always happen, after all each doe is unique, but some of my does become a lot more aggressive when pregnant.
A doe that is pregnant might start challenging the herd queen, or at least fighting back when provoked.
I guess I can’t really blame her, even people get cranky when pregnant;)
3. Getting fatter
Ok, this is a tricky sign and not super reliable.
You really need to know your doe to be able to rely on this symptom.
Some does can look like they are carrying triplets and not even be pregnant!
While some does will not look pregnant but will be pregnant with multiples!
But, if you know your doe and you realize that she is getting much wider than is usual for her, that can be a sign of pregnancy.
How to tell if your goat is pregnant
4. Milk productions decreases
If your doe is already in milk when she is bred, then her milk supply will probably begin to drop off a couple of weeks after she becomes pregnant.
5. Doe develops a milk bag or her bag fills up
If your doe has never been bred, then approximately a month before her due date she should start to develop her udder.
If she has been bred before, then her udder will fill up before delivery.
However, it could happen a month before, or only a few days before delivery!
So this sign is more helpful if your doe is a first freshener.
6. You can feel the babies’ movements
This is also a sign that is noticed as the pregnancy progresses.
As the babies grow you can sometimes feel the movement and kicks of the babies if you put your hand on the right side of her belly.
Make sure that you are feeling on the doe’s right side and not the left.
Most movements that are felt on the left side will be from the goats rumen!
7. Tail ligaments will loosen
As the doe gets closer and closer to delivery the ligaments around her tail head will loosen.
If the ligaments begin to disappear, this is definitely a sign that your doe is indeed pregnant.
You can read more about some of these symptoms and see pictures in my post 10 Signs That Your Goat Might Be In Labor!
Some additional posts related to goat breeding and delivery that you might be interested in are:
Have you observed any of these symptoms in your goats after breeding? Do you have any additional signs and symptoms to add to the above list? If so please leave me a comment below!