Important Goat Medicines to Keep on Hand
We've all been in a situation where we've found ourselves under the weather and sought help from our medicine cabinets. When this happens, it is extremely helpful to have a full stock of meds. While we as humans can appreciate the benefit of having an array of medicines to help us through illness, our goats are much the same. In order to maintain their continued good health, there are some medicines you should always have on hand. Sometimes you will be on your own with an unavailable vet when illness or injury sets in. There may not be time to run to the store or wait until morning in the event the store is closed, so having supplies on hand at all times is vital to caring for goats and keeping them healthy.
Whether it is uterine infection, mastitis, pink eye, or something along similar lines, sometimes antibiotics are in order. LA200 is a good antibiotic that doesn't require a prescription and can be used for the above purposes or administered to new goats entering your herd. Though some issues may require another drug to conquer, this is a good item to have on hand for minor issues.
Scours is a problem that is capable of causing secondary issues such as dehydration. To combat this, you're going to need access to electrolytes. Giving electrolytes to goats will help them stay adequately hydrated while you address the underlying cause of scours. Also useful for the same purpose is Kao-Pectin.
Since goats like to eat just about anything, they sometimes get themselves into trouble by consuming toxic plants. Although avoiding this is ideal, sometimes things happen and you need to be ready to handle such issues as they arise. Activated charcoal can be used at 1g/kg of body weight to absorb toxins within the goat's body, allowing them to pass those toxins safely. Also useful for this type of illness is Milk of Magnesia which has soothing properties that can help with toxins, indigestion, or constipation.
Since Coccidiosis is a problem goats may face, it is best to be prepared to deal with this condition as well by having Sulmet on hand. Though Coccidiosis is an always present parasite that goats typically have immunity to when older, kids are still susceptible to its effects. This means they could require treatment to get Coccidiosis under control, which is where Sulmet comes in. It can be added to water or given orally in undiluted form.
Photo: Roy's Farm
Although it is only available with a prescription, it may be worthwhile to have a conversation with your vet regarding a supply of Epinephrine. Since goats may suffer from Anaphylactic shock in scenarios such as after receiving injected medications, having Epinephrine on hand could mean the difference between life and death. It is also important to have it ready for use at a moment's notice as you in the event of Anaphylactic shock, there may be no time to waste.
When it comes to health of our goats, an ounce of prevention is truly worth a pound of cure. By having medicines on hand to treat issues as they arise (and refrigerating those that need it), you can ensure the best care possible for your goats in their time of need. Being prepared is always the first line of defense.
What medicines do you keep readily available at all times? Is there anything else you recommend keeping handy? Let us know in the comments.