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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I was trimming one of my senior does hooves tonight (7 yrs old, due in April) and noticed her joints were creaky. Is this likely attributable to boron deficiency? We have free choice Southern States beef minerals and also their sheep minerals with zinpro out for the girls.

I’m pretty sure I’ve read that you can give borax for boron deficiency but for some reason the search function isn’t working for me. Would the boron be left out free choice like the mineral mixes or is it made into a solution and drenched? If drenched, is there a particular dose?
 

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I have heard to leave it out free choice for a while. I’ve also heard that creaky joints happen mostly with the herd Queen. I’ve never experienced any of this, it’s just what I’ve read on here.
 

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I have clicky joints in some of my goats currently. I just leave borax out for them.
 

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There're many reasons for creaky/clicky joints. A boron deficiency is one of the most common causes, and one of the easiest to fix. I wouldn't leave Borax out full time, myself. I'd give 1/2 t to 1 t every week (depending on the severity of the creak and the size of the goat) either in a sticky kind of food or treat, or drenched, or mixed in with the regular minerals (assuming you put out loose minerals weekly)

Even if some of the clicking is because of one of the many other reasons, goats need boron anyway, and a teaspoon a week per goat won't hurt them.

The clicking from dominance might be a factor, or it might not, but I think that is a real thing.

The story that the other goats need to hear the clicking at night to know where the leader is... I find that silly. Fractally silly. (That's a real story that's being put out on the "web")
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
For mixing in with the loose minerals, would it still be 1 tsp mixed in weekly? I’ve got 11 does/doelings sharing the minerals, and we replenish anywhere from every couple of days to a week. It kind of depends on the weather outside as to how much mineral they consume.
 

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In my experience, they didn't get enough when mixed in the mixed mineral, the same with my selenium. I assume because they wont eat enough of the mineral to get enough of the added supplement because of the salt added to the minerals. When I started putting a bit out free choice (maybe 1/4 cup) the pile was gone and the issues resolved quickly. When I started seeing the little piles of it sitting there more often, I stopped offering it as the issue resolved itself. I do still leave selenium out for them as they go through it more currently.
 

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That's a very helpful anecdotal suggestion, @Jubillee. Thank you for that.
@NDinKY The teaspoon per week per goat is for full sized adult goats. So don't try to make Dwarf kids ingest that much. Boron's a trace mineral, after all.

If your mineral consumption is that variable, then mixing it in with the minerals probably isn't the best solution for you. We all manage our goats differently, and one solution definitely does not fit all. Please feel comfortable in finding your own way, and when you find it, let us know, as Jubilee did, how things work best for you. Your solution might well be someone else's salvation.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Since it is such a trace mineral, is it safe to assume they will only take in what they need if left out free choice or is there concern about overdose? All of mine are dwarfs, so definitely would go with the lower dose.

I also saw human boron 3 mg capsules are available. Much more costly, but if safer then maybe it would be easier to bolus her with a capsule.

And yes, they’re all over the place with mineral consumption. Since I put out the sheep minerals with ZinPro in addition to the cattle minerals they’ve been cranking through them, especially my bucks. An interesting observation is when it is colder out (20s) they all go for the sheep minerals but when the temps are more mild (like now in the 40s) they favor the cattle minerals. Maybe the zinc helps boost their immune systems in the cold.
 

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That's what I found last winter. The more stressed they were by the weather, the more they turned to the high zinc sheep minerals. When not so stressed, and also not eating so much alfalfa pellets because they could go out and forage, they piled on the goat mineral.
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
I ended up putting out about 1/4 c free choice. A couple of the girls went up to sniff it but I can’t tell if anyone has actually consumed any. I think I’ll leave it be for now.

It’s interesting with the dominant doe having creaky joints. I noticed another one of my younger does (who was the dominant doe in her prior herd) also has some creaky joints. No one limps and everyone just tested CAE negative last month.
 

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I saw something somewhere about adding a little Borax to their drinking water. Has anyone tried that? If so, could you share your findings?
 

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My one girl has creaky joints and I knew there I read about boron deficiency could be the cause. Since I'm only 2 years into goats, what product are you using for this? I am going to make homemade liquid laundry detergeant, so I have 20 Mule Team Borax, but it doesn't have "goat supplement" on the list of uses - haha!! Sorry, had to type that. But it's not this that I would use, is it? I have not given it!

Kelly
 

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My one girl has creaky joints and I knew there I read about boron deficiency could be the cause. Since I'm only 2 years into goats, what product are you using for this? I am going to make homemade liquid laundry detergeant, so I have 20 Mule Team Borax, but it doesn't have "goat supplement" on the list of uses - haha!! Sorry, had to type that. But it's not this that I would use, is it? I have not given it!

Kelly
I think that's the stuff - it's what I'm using. But you might want to wait for someone more experienced to respond as well. I'm also only a couple of years in.
 
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