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Urinary Calculi

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Old 03-22-2017, 02:05 PM   #21
Buck Naked Boers
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Default Urinary Calculi

I'm so sorry......for your loss. We love our wethers. I know how you must be feeling.

I've written a lot on this subject on GS. I'm not sure if anyone on this site agrees with me. . But it's ok. We've learned so much!!!

Here is our website if you want to see pix of our herd:

We own a small herd of boers. One of my wethers has gotten UC TWICE now.

I've shared our experience on goat spot. But here it it briefly again.....

We have two boer wethers. One is only a percentage boer. The other is fullblood boer. A few years ago our full blood got UC. I knew the signs and didn't wait. I rushed him off to our state vet university large animal hospital. (Much cheaper cost and get a team of drs) Upon arriving we got a team of doctors. All who had experience treating goats.
They see UC on a almost daily basis!

Now I live in Oregon, but the surgeon after taking out his stones told me that water drinking is imperative for male goats. Get them fresh water every day! He also said to NOT feed any food to them other than good balanced hay. I only buy tested hay from a hay producer that has the good balance they need. No grain. And my boys are probably considered overweight! I don't worry about them. They look great! They have a good loose mineral free choice as well. Fresh water daily and pasture. As well as things from the garden in the summer.

A word about stones:
My goat had his stones tested both times he got UC. Both times they were calcium carbonate. The second time he got them he'd been off grain entirely. The vets don't know what's causing his formation of stones regarding his balanced diet. Our thought is maybe its pasture because we limed it heavy. But we don't know.

I use acidification now as a preventative. It won't get rid of the stones if he has them. But prevent them from forming because it makes the bladder a formidable place for them to grow.

I have started giving them biochlor. Another option other than AC. It's sort of a trial run for me. I test my boys pee with ph strips. You can do that. Just get the ph tape and run it in their stream. Instant results.
I plan to use straight AC if the biochlor doesn't wk.

Water: At this time for prevention I clean buckets every few days and spray out buckets and fresh water (warm in winter) twice a day on most days. My wether who has gotten the stones is a heavy water drinker. We had water tested but it checked out fine.

Staying ahead of stones:
We are taking him yearly to be rechecked (they run a X-ray or scan of his bladder cat scan) to get ahead of any problems. The surgery can be done without opening them up. Laparoscopic. I highly recommend this. The first surgery was done that way and the recovery time was much less. The second surgery was done by different doc and she didn't do laparoscopic surgery. Longer recovery/healing time. I'm making sure we go next time when the laparoscopic doc is on the schedule.

We just had our last surgery a couple months ago. He's doing great.

Calcium carbonate stones are very common in Oregon. They DO NOT dissolve in AC. Other types of stones do. But if your goat had cc stones that is likely one reason AC would not have wked.

Castration timing:
My other wether has never gotten stones. However he was castrated much much later than my full blood. The people who owned both boys before I castrated early (fullblood) and the other late ( percentage).

Pelleted grains:
I was told the "glue" used to make the pellets can also cause issues with stone formation. I don't know if this is true. Just thought I'd share.

We feed grain only to our does who are feeding babies or nearing birth. And feed grain to our babies too. We feed a quality "no pelletized "grain that is organic.

In my opinion boers don't need grain. I watch their worm load, having fecals checked every so often. If worn load is down and they aren't being used for milk why feed them grain? My goats are FAT on pasture and hay! They don't need more!!

I test my soil in the pasture so I know what the grass needs. Then I fertilize and lime if needed. And I buy hay that is tested so I know they are getting nutrition which is vital.

Genetics: May play a part in the UC story. My fullblood wether may have had bad genetics in regard to UC. His dad is dead and his breeder hasn't given me info on his cause of death. Maybe she didn't know. Not sure. It's been suggested to me tho that this could be the answer why my wether keeps getting stones.

I've stopped trying to figure out how to fix him. I'm doing all I'm supposed to do and he still got them.

Hope my experience helps someone. I wish I'd known all this stuff a long time ago! So I share it in the hopes someone appreciates it and can use the info. And help their animals.

I'd be happy to answer any questions you might have. Our experience has been valuable to us. We've learned a lot. I won't get anymore wethers. All our male kids are bucks and we sell them.


Buck Naked Boers
Breeding Beautiful Boers in the Cascade Foothills

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Old Today, 03:43 AM   #22
7 does - 2 bucks - 1 wether
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Tami, that was very educational, although I'm sorry for all the struggles you've had to deal with. The whole issue with stones is also why I stopped selling wethers ... we have a sole wether here, who is my mom's special pet. I just try to feed him with as much prevention as possible. I appreciate you sharing your experience.

If this isn't too off-topic, do you happen to know if it would be listed on the bag if alfalfa pellets were using a "glue" to make the pellets? Don't want to feed my boy anything harmful.

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Old Today, 03:59 AM   #23
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Yeah I don't sell wethers either. All my boys are sold as bucks. I'm pretty selective regarding pedigrees of bucks we breed to and thankfully all our boys have been buck quality.

As far as the glue, I'm not sure. I was told how they make pellets is with some substance that contributes to stone formation. I think a vet told us that.

I only feed good quality tested (so I know calcium/phosphorus ratios) hay to my boys with fresh water and loose free choice minerals. They have pasture on dry days too. But that's all they get, other than apple and garden treats, raisins , that kind of stuff. And they are overweight! Lol.

Thanks for your note. It's been very frustrating having gone through it twice. The weird thing is my other wether has same diet and hasn't ever had UC. He is percentage boer tho. My wether that's had UC twice is a fullblood. I'm just pretty sure there has to be genetics involved. He's such a sweetie tho. We can't put him down. So we feed him like docs say and will get him tested later this year again.

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Old Today, 07:43 AM   #24
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Tami, you've helped me learn so much!!! I now basically do everything you are doing, when it comes to feed and preventatives.
I don't think I will be selling any wethers, bucks only with or without papers depending on quality. Since I'm very much breeding for quality, hopefully it shouldn't be to difficult!
Yonnah Urinary Calculi - Health & Wellness
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