As I got nearer I could see it was a just arrived cria but not moving - I ran. It was a very premature cria and at first I could not tell who the Mum was as they were all milling around and no one at all showed any sign of any blood or anything. First thing was to spray the navel and see if I could get him up. He could not stand and his breathing was very bad, almost growling and gurgling, also his gums were completely white. It is not so easy to swing a cria as it is a lamb but I managed although I had visions of pulling his legs off. Nothing came out and there was a lot of slime still attached to his nose and in his mouth. After fiddling for a bit I resorted to artificial respiration, more for something to do than anything else, which is completely disgusting on a slimy cria (Carl said I should have used a tube but where do you suddenly find one of them in the middle of a field?)and nothing improving I rang for advice (during which I saw Crispie pass the afterbirth so I knew it was hers) but still made very little progress. In the end I phoned the vet who said there was nothing he could do that I wasn't doing and just to let nature take it's course a he was too premature (a couple of days before 10 months). I have never had one this premature.
Mind you he is quite big. I have just sat him up like this - he soon falls over again.
I wasn't going to just leave him but I couldn't get him drinking from Crispie - she liked him but he had no suck reflex what so ever. Stomach tube time and that is not something I enjoy. I know I should be used to it by now and I know my breeder readers just take it in their stride but I hate it! So, all set up I got him on my knee and was about to begin when I felt a very damp leg and lifting my hand I found it covered in blood. First time I have had it - a umbilical hemorrhage. I wasn't organised not expecting much to happen yet so had to stick him under my arm, grasp the cord to stem the flow and run to the caravan to find the umbilical clamps - and pretty hopeless they were (probably my fault really) the first dropped off within 5 minutes. Did it in the end and iodined him up then back to the stomach tube. I have to say it was the simplest I have ever done as he helped it down by swallowing every now and again.
The breathing was still really bad and I couldn't get anything else out of him so in desperation (and you may not be supposed to do this) I got a syringe - without needle obviously - stuffed it, carefully, up each nostril in turn and pulled the plunger back. Remarkably, and it might be a fluke and not because of what I did, he started breathing almost normally and the rasping stopped. He is still with us and is tucked up in a field shelter with Crispie and Cassie as honorary auntie but he still cannot stand and he may not make it.
I fear the blog may not be terrifically grammatical but I am very stressed - and on top of all that . . . but, no, the rest can wait for another blog!