A Sick Goat


When a goat gets sick it is always a concern for a goat owner.  We all strive for the healthiest herds possible.  But things do arise and it is good to be on top of what is happening in your herd.  It is best if any problems can be spotted early on and dealt with immediately.  In order to do this it helps to pay attention to normal goat behavior.  While they are eating is a good time to do this.  It is one time where all goats are gathered together and focused on the food which allows for easier inspection.


What are some things to look for? A goat not eating its feed is not normal.  Most goats have one goal in life and that is to eat!  So it is a big sign that something is not right if they are not eating.  The next thing to look at is does the goat have diarrhea? Again this is not normal.  Another observation is does the goat look sluggish, lethargic or tired.  A problem noticed early on will be a problem easier to solve. 


The first thing I do is take the goats temperature.  The normal temp for an adult goat is between 102 and 103.   If there is a temperature then there may be an infection.  Antibiotics may be needed to treat this. 


Then you may also want to get a stool sample to take to the vets.  They can be checked to see if they need worming.  Worming should be done on a regular set schedule. Worms cause many problems among goats.   You may also need to switch between different types of wormers as goats build up a resistance to wormers.  I have recently started using and herbal wormer and will be interested to see how this works for my herd. 


In the spring I watch carefully for coccidiosis among my kid goats.  This is a common problem here where I live due to large amount of rain that falls during the summer.  I now do preventative treatments on my kids.  I give each kid a small twice a day dose of Di-Methox 40% for 5 days and then once a week until they are weaned.  If you would like more info on this you can read this article from Hoeggar Goat Supply (It is there recommendations that I follow): http://hoeggergoatsupply.com/info/cocci.shtml


I have had goats eat poisonous brush and get very ill and one died.  Sometimes there is nothing you can do; other times proactive quick treatment of these issues will solve the problem. 


These are just the basic places to start.  I recommend reading all you can on goat health and keep a close eye on your goats to be able to spot any problems as quick as possible.





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