Smallholders Insurance from Greenlands

Author Topic: Phantom pregnancy issues  (Read 891 times)


  • Joined Jul 2022
Phantom pregnancy issues
« on: December 16, 2022, 04:37:52 am »
I took on 2 golden Guernsey goats in august. Sept I brought in an amazing buck.
Plan was to breed the doe in October/ November.
When she came she had toxic udder and a phantom pregnancy. Sheís evidently never been bred. Her buck brother was running loose with them 🤦‍♀️

Anyway, roll on to now I want her bred and canít because sheís still got a full udder and her body thinks sheís pregnant.
The vet came out in October to give her a termination shot incase she was covered by her brother.

I donít want her in milk now (I can milk her 1 day, next week no milk. Then her udder is tight again!

I need to get her health under control as itís not right now.

Does anyone have any experience with this please? What I can try please?

Sheís a happy goat in herself

I have the vet out to do a farm health check on Tuesday. Iíd love a clue what to do before she comes

Thank you!


  • Joined Dec 2009
  • St Boswells, Scottish Borders
Re: Phantom pregnancy issues
« Reply #1 on: December 16, 2022, 09:45:12 am »
A full udder/being in milk has nothing to do with being able to conceive or coming into season (urban myth, same as in humans...). You can safely milk her for the first three months of pregnancy as long as she is being fed well (but not extra). Then dry her off in the last two months, and usually that is easiest in December/January as it coincides with their natural drying off period (very low daylight hours). It is also easier to dry them of by reducing the quantiity of milk you take, so only make the udder comnfortably soft, not strip out, then reduce times of milking, and she will slowly stop to produce milk.

It is also important to track how often she comes into season (it should be very three weeks) - she will tell you when she is! Unless she is a) already in kid after making her own arrangements (you should be able to smell if she has been with the boy) or b) she has gone cystic, in which case you will be having real difficulty in getting her to hold to service. She will be in season regularly from anything like every 5 to 10 days - again you will know. If that is the case, vet may try some injections, but I have only rarely heard that they are successful.

If she is not vocal when in season, I would take her next to the male's pen once a day for the next three weeks - she will wagg her tail and actually run up to him when ready to be mated. Her backend should also be pink and damp. He may be keen all the time, but unless she is too, you are just be wasting his energy.

For the vet visit on Tuesday I would ask him/her to bring a scanner to check for pregnancy and I think she can also get a blood test done (I guess you are taking bloods for CAE and/or Johne's anyway). I am however uncertain if a blood test can distuingish between a phantom and a real pregnancy - vet should know. You can also get a pregnancy test done through the milk, but you would have to contact your local NMR lab.

If she did have a previous unsuccessful pregnancy or abortion, she may well have gone infertile as a result of that, or in rare cases she could have a mummified foetus still inside. Scan should tell you.

However tbh, if she cannot conceive naturally you are better off ing buying another female rather than spending huge amounts of cash on what is unlikely to be a successful outcome, given you don't know her past history and have to rely on whatever the seller told you.... Unless she is pedigree (and then again of a rare and high quality) you may well have to ckalk this one up to experience.


  • Joined Jul 2022
Re: Phantom pregnancy issues
« Reply #2 on: December 16, 2022, 11:56:49 am »
Thank you for your reply

Iíve had a vet scan her as empty. He jabbed her to abort just in case. No aborted kid landed in the ground
She isnít letting me know when sheís in season ever. She attacks the buck when I tried them in together a few months ago.

She is a rare pure breed. The buck is rarer than she is (his blood line is super rare).

She worth trying a little more I think. Not masses.
I have a horrible feeling her previous owner sold her knowing she couldnít conceive.

I wanted to dry her off before I bred her. Thereís no reason I can find sheís in milk. I havenít milked her in a couple of months and sheís still got a full udder.

Something just isnít adding up with her.
Iíve had her blood tests for everything lol. My vet thought I was insane because itís crazy expensive to do those bloods.
I know sheís clean. I didnít want to put her to my buck and give him something with how rare he is.

Never easy with these animals lol


  • Joined Dec 2009
  • St Boswells, Scottish Borders
Re: Phantom pregnancy issues
« Reply #3 on: December 16, 2022, 01:49:07 pm »
I keep pedigree GG's myself - and have chosen NOT to breed for a specific bloodline, but I go for conformation (udder, topline, straight backlegs - in that order) and mate accordingly. Milk yield important, but not considered when I select a male.

Super rare males (and bloodlines) are rare for a reason... sorry.

Do you have the pedigree names? And are there any full siblings registered? You can pm me if you do not want to go public.


  • Joined Jul 2022
Re: Phantom pregnancy issues
« Reply #4 on: December 16, 2022, 07:09:46 pm »
Iíve messaged you 😊
I donít want to upset the does previous owner incase they are on here. She clearly lived her goats.


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