A place where one woman has gathered resources and information to help her family survive in an uncertain future; together with occasional personal musings.

Wednesday, June 15, 2011

goat health

The Thin Poor Doing Goat

by Kevin D Pelzer DVM. MPVM
Virginia Maryland Regional College of Veterinary Medicine
Periodically goats appear thin or lose condition but generally regain weight. This is pretty normal in most animal production systems. Unfortunately, some goats do not regain the lost weight and may even continue to lose weight. There are a number of reasons that goats may become poor doers, some are management related and some are related to disease agents that have a long term negative effect on the animal.

Extra label usage - drugs listed in this category can only be used under direction of your veterinarian. Need to obtain withdraw periods and directions.

Management Factors

a) Low quality diets or low quantity diets
Goats should have a diet that consists of 8 - 13.5 % CP depending on the stage of production. Energy requirements will vary as well and are the highest during lactation. The best means to evaluate the ration is to have forage analysis performed on the forage. Book values can be used for the common grains.
b) Inadequate feeder space

Ideally more than one feeder should be used.
1.4 to 2 linear feet per head.
c) Inadequate space

Dry lot confinement there should be 35 to 100 sq ft per animal.
Less space increases fighting.
d) bully vs shy animals

French Alpine and Toggenburg breeds tend to be more aggressive.
Nubians tend to be shy and submissive.
e) Age hierarchy

Infectious Agents

a) Parasites
Internal parasites - Haemonchus contortus or Barber pole worm
causes severe anemia
look at the third eyelid
bottle jaw, edema under the jaw
External parasites - Biting and sucking lice

can cause anemia or blood loss along with blood proteins
part the hair and observe little brown dots with white/cream ends
Cylence® - pyrethroid Extra label usage
Seven Dust® - carbaryl Extra label usage
sprinkle over back
CO-RAL® powder Extra label usage
Cydectin® pour-on cattle dewormer Extra label usage
Along with topical treatment, injectable treatment with an avermectin may be helpful.
Ivomec or Dectomax Extra label usage
b) Caseous Lymphadenitis

Caused by Corynebacterium pseudotuberculosis
Survives in dark, damp areas, soil, and manure for extended periods of time.
Clinical signs:
Enlarged lymph nodes especially in the throat latch area
Internal abscess, lungs and associated lymph nodes, lymph nodes of the intestinal tract.
May affect the spinal cord and udder causing mastitis.
contamination of superficial wounds (shearing) or mucous membranes
indirectly through fomites - feeders, grooming equipment, and bedding
inhalation or ingestion
appearance of thick green pus
serology/blood test
lance abscess and pack with iodine gauze
contaminates the environment - keep isolated
long term penicillin, 30 days rarely successful
hygiene, disinfect equipment (trimmers)
cull infected animals.
don't buy infected animals.
blood test, cull positive animals - consult veterinarian
vaccination - using sheep vaccine may cause adverse reactions in goats if the goats are already infected. Best to vaccinate at 2 - 3 months of age and then yearly
c) Johne's Disease

Caused by Mycobacterium paratuberculosis
survives in soil and manure for years

Clinical signs:
chronic weight loss in spite of a good appetite
diarrhea may occur in animals but is generally not seen as it is in cattle
weight loss is noted (brought on) after a time of stress, kidding or breeding
rough hair coat
animals are usually older than 1 year of age.
fecal oral, consumed in feed or off pasture
kids are most susceptible to infection
can be acquired through milk or colostrum
can be acquired in utero
serology/blood test
biopsy of intestinal lymph nodes
hygiene, keep waterers and feeders clean
cull infected animals and off spring of affected animals
don't buy infected animals
blood test, cull positive animals - consult veterinarian
raise kids separated from adults
use colostrum from negative or disease free animals
Chronic Pulmonary Disease - Lungers

Chronic pulmonary or lung disease can be caused by a variety of infectious agents.
Depending on the agent, clinical signs may vary.

Clinical signs:

may or may not have a temperature, may go and come
persistent cough
noticeable movement of the chest with effort to expel breath, little grunt
slightly depressed and poor appetite or intermittent anorexia
exercise brings on clinical signs

Lung worms
Diagnose by fecal exam
treatment of animals with severe signs is unrewarding
Mycoplasma mycoides
Long acting tetracycline Extralabel usage
-- these infections can be very difficult to treat
Pastuerella hemolytica or Mannheimia hemolytica
Nuflor® Extralabel usage
adjunct treatment
Vit C/100 lbs Extralabel usage
BoSe/100 lbs, may not want to use in pregnant goats as may produce an allergic type reaction. Extralabel usage
Caprine Arthritis and Encephalitis Virus

Degenerative Joint Disease
Caprine Arthritis and Encephalitis

Caused by CAE Virus - retrovirus, similar to AIDS virus

Clinical signs:
chronic weight loss
swollen joints, especially the knees (carpus) usually a year of age or older
may have swelling just behind the poll
contracted tendons
rough hair coat
lung problems
Note* Many animals may be affected but do not show clinical signs. Most infections are acquired around birth but clinical signs do not develop for years.

exposure to body fluids - milk, saliva, nasal secretions
kids are most susceptible to infection
can be acquired through milk or colostrum
can be acquired in utero
can be transmitted by blood
serology/blood test
Pasteurize colostrum and milk (heat milk to 134F for 30 minutes
cull infected animals and off spring of affected animals
don't buy infected animals
blood test, cull positive animals - consult veterinarian
raise kids separated from adults
use colostrum from negative or disease free animals, colostrum substitute - Lifeline®
Mycoplasma arthritis

Mycoplasma mycoides
Clinical signs - similar to CAE
acquired through infected milk and colostrum
kids develop a joint infection but recover but some damage has been done to the joint surfaces which takes some time before noticeable arthritis occurs.
Diagnosis - difficult
antiinflammatory drugs - Aspirin
Adequan® Extralabel
Foot rot

Caused by 2 bacteria
Bacteroides nodosus (Dichelobacter nodosus)
Fusobacterium necrophorum
Clinical signs:
under run hoofwall separated from the hoof
swollen joint above hoof is common in severe cases
necrotic smell, black tarry dirt in the overgrown hoof
organisms picked up from the soil
spread via hoof trimmers
clinical signs
trim feet, remove all separated hoof wall
soak feet in 10% sodium sulfate foot bath
Long acting tetracycline or Penicillin
keep feet trimmed
keep out of wet damp environments
Return to Maryland Goat Conference.