The Goat Spot Forum banner
1 - 20 of 144 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,604 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Why are so many completely hysterical when it comes to Caseous Lymphadeniti? Is it that it's incurable?

I've been reading articles around the web and trying to learn.

There are so many people asking about abscess on their goats and they're all getting the answer, "Its probably CL, you should cull" when there are clear indicators that some are not. Sure, advocate getting the goat tested when there is an abscess but some of it seems a little over board. Or am I not worried enough?

I've also read that something like 80% of goats are infected. :eek: That means most of us are likely to have an infected goat now or we will.

Lance and test or treat the abscess with Formalin seem to be the only treatments.
No vaccine but you can get one made from the CL that is native in your heard for the low low price of $850 and even then, it still may not be effective.

No one wants this to be in their herd but it seems like it's relatively unavoidable at some point if you are ever in contact with goats at a show or bring new animals into your herd, so having a plan of attack is a good idea, right? What is that plan of attack?

Pasteurize any milk from a goat that might have CL or that definitively does....but why would you want to keep milking a CL positive goat?

Does CL pass from mother to child in the womb? Nothing was mentioned about breeding a CL positive goat probably because course of action is culling but it seems only normal that a goat may be found to have CL after she was pregnant.

Its an interesting subject and I don't claim to have any answers. I know many of you experienced people have opinions and probably a plan of attack if something happens in your herd. I'd love to hear opinions or discussion on this. It doesn't look like a vaccine is going to happen any time soon so it's something we are stuck dealing with.
 

·
Super Moderator
Joined
·
59,213 Posts
Actually there is a CL vaccine. It isn't labelled for goats but goat breeders do use it.

Humans can get CL. You need to take precautions if you are lancing an abscess.

There are also a lot of breeders out there who don't care that their herd has CL, you won't find too many of them on places like TGS.

CL gets into the soil, on the wood of the barn, etc and stays there for many years, for the possibility of infecting other goats for years.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
37 Posts
When I first had goats, ten years ago, my milk doe got a lump in her neck. I thought this was strange, but maybe she got cut and it was infected. Some time later we bought a few other goats and soon I noticed they too developed a knot in their neck or head. I found this curious but was not overly concerned. Eventually the goats all died one by one, mysteriously.

Now I am getting back in the goat game, but I have read up on all the diseases. Having read about CL and the symptoms of it, I have been EXTREMELY surprised by the amount of people who answer "oh, I don't test". When I was younger I didn't know any better, had never heard of any CL or CAE or anything else. But now that I know, I can't imagine not testing.

When I buy a goat that hasn't been tested or has, but I couldn't see the paperwork, they go into an isolation pen. We draw the blood and send it off, if they come back good then they can mingle with the herd. If they come back positive.... it's freezer camp.

Doing this I have created a herd that it's CAE, CL and johnes free. It's hard and I've lost a lot of money.... but I think it's worth it too know your goats are all healthy.

Albeit, I don't show our travel to farms that don't test... but I am also curious how people with CL free goats can travel to shows without risking so much?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,604 Posts
Discussion Starter · #4 ·
I've read about the Sheep vaccine for CL and it's use on goats. I've heard that it's not recommended because it caused issues in some of the goats that tested with it and that they have no idea if it's effective. I read as many articles as I could find on it but they all said exactly the same thing. Though it seemed like if you had a large herd, it might be smart to use it anyway as a "just in case"

I'd like to test my goats but I've heard the blood test isn't accurate.
When we got the goats they were tested CAE and Johnes free but not CL tested because the breeder didn't believe it was an accurate test. Studies I've found online talk about a lot of false results. I can draw blood, but I have no idea how to get it tested or even how to read that some goat may have the antibodies but not the actual disease. There was one case I read of a farmer that brought new goats in the herd and separated them, tested and it came back pos but they thought it might be antibodies so they held them and retested at intervals and decided that the new goats had antibodies but not the disease.

I've read that humans getting CL is rare but the cases that it's happened is that its direct open wound contact with the infection in the blood or puss....and then there was some vague backhanded reference I found of milk infecting humans. Information generally said to pasteurize milk but nothing about actual case evidence of humans getting sick. Not that I don't believe it can happen. I am wondering how a kid can be born to a doe that has CL and not get it. They can't right? This suggests those that are breeding CL positive animals are just creating more babies that have it and then they all have a much shortened life span.

So in reading about the formalin treatment, that seems all well and good to get rid of the abscess in a clean way, but the goat still has CL. She/he still has a shortened life. Nothing ever was mentioned if CL was painful. Does a goat live out the rest of their life in pain? Is it better to put them down?

I know. so many questions. Not that I expect answers. I guess to some degree, I'm thinking out loud. This is an interesting/difficult subject that I think will touch most us at some time.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
37 Posts
Well are any of the tests really accurate? It all seems like a kinda soft science to me....

I've seen the CAE test come back positive because the goat was stressed when blood was drawn and negative when it was calm.

I've seen the CL test come back positive and when the goat is butchered out there is no sign of CL anywhere.

It doesn't make any sense!
 

·
I'm not addicted - I'm in love!
Joined
·
5,018 Posts
Personally, I think CL has been hyped up too much...but then, I've never had it in my herd, so what do I know? :p
A positive doe can produce negative kids, since the disease is only spread through the pus from an abscess. Of course if the doe had an abscess in the uterus, I suppose it could infect the kid.
Many goats get one abscess and then recover, effectively having been vaccinated. Obviously, these are the ones whose immune systems can handle the bacteria. I see no reason to cull a healthy goat because it had contracted, and recovered from, some "freaky" disease. But of course it's hard to tell if the goat really recovered, or if the abscesses just "went internal" as they call it. I really wonder if titer counts can tell if a "recovered" goat has internal abscesses or not.

If I had the disease in my herd, first I would do a lot of research, and then I would probably cull only the goats that didn't recover quickly. Of course I wouldn't sell a sick goat, and I would be honest to buyers about any recovered ones.

Oh, and the reason some people don't test is because the test is not very accurate. I only test when an abscess pops up (which happened once - it wasn't CL.)

This is just my opinion after all my reading. I defer to the opinions of those who have actually experienced it. :)
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
191 Posts
There is in fact a goat vaccine. It was just approved for use about a year ago, so there is very little on the internet about it. Some states (like mine, still require vet approval for it's use) but a lot of states sell it over the counter. You can find it at Jeffers, and if you have questions about it, I've actually found them to be very helpful. It's made by Texas Vet Labs.

The primary method of transmission for CL is direct contact with the pus from an abscess. While humans can get it, like you said, it's very rare. Milk is only an issue if there is an open abscess in the udder, and once again, this is rare. The disease is not transmitted in utero.

I actually have several CL positive goats. It's a long story on how I ended up with it, but I firmly believe it can be managed. There are several "rules" I have come up with and stick by when it comes to managing the disease. I have positive goats that have lived very long, healthy, productive lives with the disease and this is why I have never resulted to blanket culling.

I vaccinate everyone annually. The vaccine does nothing for a CL positive goat, but since I don't test, it covers the ones who don't have it. I keep records on all my goats, and keep track of every abscess. I have some goats that only develop a single abscess in their entire life, others seem to get one a year. If a goat gets more than one a year, I cull it. If a goat starts to show signs of potential internal abscesses (unexplained loss of weight, a lot of coughing when appearing otherwise healthy) I cull it.

A quick word on Formalin. You will run in to mixed opinions on this treatment. It's risky, and all about timing. If you treat a goat with this method you need to make sure you do so after the abscess is fully formed, but before all the hair falls off and the skin is thin. At this point, there is a wall between the goat's body and the abscess that should keep the formalin out of the goat's system. If you do it earlier, or slip with the needle and get Formalin into a goat, the goat will suffer very painful nerve damage. When used properly, this can be a very clean, effective method for dealing with an abscess. My biggest fear with it has always been residue issues. I have used it on my goats, but when I do, I mark their flies "not for human consumption". These are breeding goats who will live and die with me. If I decide they should be culled for whatever reason, they are put down and buried.

Over time, I have seen a reduction in new cases and abscesses in my herd. In time, I hope with effective management, my herd will be clean.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,604 Posts
Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Well are any of the tests really accurate? It all seems like a kinda soft science to me....

I've seen the CAE test come back positive because the goat was stressed when blood was drawn and negative when it was calm.

I've seen the CL test come back positive and when the goat is butchered out there is no sign of CL anywhere.

It doesn't make any sense!
None of it makes sense to me which is why I started this thread. There is good information out there but a lot of conflicting stuff too. I'm trying to make heads or tails of it and see what I should test my new herd for. It's all very confusing and knowing the test might be false one way or the other makes me have no confidence in it.

I will still test but I am likely to take the results with a grain of salt and retest regardless of the way the tests come out.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,319 Posts
we always isolate and test for johnes, cl and cae , always. we do show our goats and always follow the usda guidelines for scrapies and other infectious diseases. we vaccinate what we can vaccinate for. maybe some think we go a little overboard, but there is nothing as good as peace of mind.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
31,019 Posts
I've read about the Sheep vaccine for CL and it's use on goats. I've heard that it's not recommended because it caused issues in some of the goats that tested with it and that they have no idea if it's effective.
I heard its very painful for goats as well! There is one for goats now, but personally, I still will not vaccinate against CL..There is not enough study in the effectivenss or the negative effects yet.

Here is my take on it..and it might not be very popular, but I fear too many otherwise healthy goats are distroyed because of CL. I ended up with Five Boer goat with CL...my first goat purchase years ago...I didnt know what it was..I was told they were worm pockets to keep worming them all the while they were spreading it all over. After working with my vet on several to lance and flush the cysts I learned to do it myself..it took a few years to clean up the herd and we worked even longer to clean the property....we bleached and scrubbed every inch of every area of the farm. .. So here is my 2 cents..Every goat deserves a chance..Many of the goats I treated never got a second CL in my ownership....I cant help but wonder if their immune system was stronger than the CL and build antitbodies to prevent further infection....If we goat owners would deal with CL responsably we could cut down considerably on the spreading, understandng how CL works and how to deal ithit properly, and knowing mulitple CL in Goats shows a weak immune system and increase the likelyhood of internal CL..I would not purposly go bring home a goat or lamb with CL, but if one ended up with it...I woudn't cull first thing either...
I would not use Formalin....IMO too risky..Ive had success with lancing and Flushing...Yes more work and more care is needed, but less risky. Ok my 2 cents lol
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,604 Posts
Discussion Starter · #11 · (Edited)
I looked up the vaccine, thank you for pointing that out. Blocked in my state too (and most states). Though, if you have an animal that tested pos from CL, I would think getting the vaccine for the rest of the herd would be wise even if you had to beg your vet to get it for you.

SCRMG - thank you for your experience with this. Everything online I've read is "cull as fast as you can". It's interesting to see someone that can manage a herd with CL in it. There are mixed opinions on Formalin, I figured it was mostly because the use of Formalin implied that one was keeping the goat where the general opinion is to get rid of the goat. I did read about the dangers of Formalin too. But I would think that it's better to use it than put the animal down or risk infecting the herd. Do you sell kids born to infected does?

I admit, doing shows scares me a little bit. At home, I can keep my babies safe and away from disease but at a show, I just don't always have that control or know what was there before me. I have looked up procedure to clean a stall and all that but you just never know. I don't think it will stop me from doing a show but knowing that this disease can be managed with diligence does ease my mind. Thank you Cathy and SCRMG.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
617 Posts
I have just experienced. Some cl lumps ,vAcinated the rest of the heard,I'm in ny ,bought from Jeffers,I'm doing a combination. If Lansing and formalin,have had 3 abscesses,I was going to have the puss tested but called out vet and they send out to Cornell university in ny and they only test blood not puss,but everything I read it all screamed cl,good luck
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
191 Posts
Amy, most of my kids go through the auction for slaughter but I do occasionally sell breeding quality kids through private sale. When I do this, I am brutally honest. Most buyers I've run in to do not know what CL is, and I really feel it's my responsibility to educate them. I do not hide the fact that I have CL in my herd (it really bothers me that some people do... I know one who will sell a known positive goat to unsuspecting newbie for $800+ and never lose a night's sleep...)

Any way, whether the goat is from a CL positive doe or not, I encourage buyers to test the goats. I also stay in contact with as many buyers as possible. I sell the goats with a contract that states that the goat can be returned for a full refund if an abscess is discovered. So far, I have not had any goats returned, and the buyers have been pleased with their goats. I have quite a few return customers.

I've actually, often wondered if there might not be a benefit to breeding CL positive goats that only have a single abscess in their lives. This is an indication of a healthy immune system, and that is something genetically that I would like to encourage in my stock. Just like breeding for worm resistance.

I attached a picture of one of my favorite girls. Taco, as I call her, has had a rough life. As a kid she was attacked by a dog and lost her tail, and scarred her face. She also has CL. I just snapped this picture of her. She's about 11 years old now, and living out life as a retired girl. In the time I had her, she raised 7 beautiful sets of quads, and 1 set of triplets. Other than an occasional abscess (1 every couple of years), she is a healthy girl. Most of her doelings are being used as breeding stock, none of the ones that I still know of have had CL. She also has many granddaughters and great grandaughters out there breeding. Most of them, like her, carry and raise high multiples without their bodies breaking down from the wear (Taco's udder still shrinks up to nothing when she is dry!). There are some good genetics in this line that would have been lost if I had culled her when I found out she had CL.
 

Attachments

·
Registered
Joined
·
14,606 Posts
SCRMG - thank you for your experience with this. Everything online I've read is "cull as fast as you can". It's interesting to see someone that can manage a herd with CL in it. There are mixed opinions on Formalin, I figured it was mostly because the use of Formalin implied that one was keeping the goat where the general opinion is to get rid of the goat. I did read about the dangers of Formalin too. But I would think that it's better to use it than put the animal down or risk infecting the herd. Do you sell kids born to infected does?
I agree about the formalin as well. I have over the years had 4 cl abscess, I have never tested any of my animals so for all i know they all have it. The first abscess was from my first goat who was (she passed this year) my baby girl and my best doe. When she got it I didnt know what it was, it was on the chest so thought is was a bad heart. I lost a lot of sleep when I found out about cl but then started thinking, I was not going to cull her, like scrmg most of my kids do go to auction, so once I got that threw my head that Bill will die here and not be culled I made a pen very far away from my goats, it is know as the cl pen lol. For all the ones with abscesses they are placed in there, its cleaned everything is burned, I let the abscess heal, they are cleaned up and sent back out, and the ground is cleaned bleached and when fire danger is not high brush goes in there and burned. I really dont think cl is a 100% death to them, one of my abscess cases is a dino old doe only has 3 teeth, and her horn keep pealing off, and she is still going strong and happy as can be. I just sold a buck and 7 does to a man starting in goats, I knew he had no idea about this cl stuff so told him I do not test my animals and that they have not had abscess them selfs I have had some in other goats. He hired a vet since he or i didnt know how to draw blood, and they were clean. I respect everyone has a clean herd and work hard to keep that because thats my goal one day as well. Ill cycle out the old unknown, vac. they young and keep going that way. It really does suck on the spreading of this if you think about it, goats always itch on something, one with the abscess itches on say a tree, it opens it up and gets the puss on it, the next clean goat rubs on it gets a scratch on her with the puss getting into it and now theres another one.
 

·
Banned
Joined
·
5,944 Posts
I am wondering how a kid can be born to a doe that has CL and not get it. They can't right? This suggests those that are breeding CL positive animals are just creating more babies that have it and then they all have a much shortened life span.
They can't. CL usually does not shorten the life of a goat, however. Shortened life is generally sheep who tend to develop abcesses internally, as opposed to a goat who usually develop external abcesses. I have also noticed that there is a kind of immunity - for lack of a better word - in a lot of kids where CL is concerned. A good percentage of my kids never develop an abcess. My kids are also sold through the sale barn - never via private treaty unless they are going strictly for meat. Right, wrong, or indifferent, the #1 rule of the sale barn is buyer beware. I would never, ever sell a breeder or pet to an individual without fully disclosing that I have CL in my herd, but I do not disclose that information at the sale barn.
 

·
Member
Joined
·
8,247 Posts
I purchased the CL vaccine from Jeffers- but am waiting until I know more about it before I use it! (I hope I didn't waste my money!) We have a new farm vet and
I want to speak with her about it and get her opinion. She seems very knowledegable about goats, makes farm calls and doesn't charge an arm and a leg!
 

·
Banned
Joined
·
5,944 Posts
I am also giving the new goat vaccine some time before I implement it as a means of control in my herd. I have the phone number for Texas Labs, and I will probably call and talk to them the end of the summer - I figure that should give them enough time to have a projected degree of effectiveness and at least some of the kinks worked out.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,604 Posts
Discussion Starter · #20 ·
I purchased the CL vaccine from Jeffers- but am waiting until I know more about it before I use it! (I hope I didn't waste my money!) We have a new farm vet and
I want to speak with her about it and get her opinion. She seems very knowledegable about goats, makes farm calls and doesn't charge an arm and a leg!
We have a good local vet too! I'm excited to have found her and hope in the next week or 2 to talk about the vaccine. If I'm doing shows, I'd like to have that little bit of insurance. The only thing that worries me is that the vaccine is not approved for lactating does. Does that entirely rule out dairy goats or is there a withdrawal time that is not listed? I'm hoping my vet has the answers.
 
1 - 20 of 144 Posts
Top