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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Can i please get your advice and help? My 14 year old ex-milking goat is eating only grass. Now, I know that sounds natural but for her, it's not. Three weeks ago we had the vet come since she was limping and not putting any weight on her front right leg. Hooves were fine. Vet prescribed 2ml steroids subcutaneous every other day. She also wasn't eating her usual nuts/grain (which she always loved) nor is she eating hay ( good quality) nor her oatcake treats, again which she used to scarf up. The vet checked her teeth and as far as she can tell, they are fine. She now only grazes on grass and brambles. Which would be fine but she doesn't have access to it free reign. The sudden stopping of eating her usual stuff worries me. Does anybody have any ideas?
Thanks in advance.
 

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First thing I do when a goat is off is a check up. Hows her temperature?
Rumen noise snd function? Is she chewing a cud?
Drinking plenty and is poop nice berries? Also check her famacha for anemia.
 

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I've seen this before and in my experience it's a sign they're getting near the end. And at 14 years old it's ok. Sudden changes in diet during old age are usually a sign that the body is starting to shut down. It happened to my old goat, Cuzco, when he was 15. He stopped eating hay and pellets, and then he even stopped eating grass. He would only eat junk food (donuts, cookies, popcorn, cheesy garlic bread, potato chips, etc.). He also stopped going for his daily walks and he quit hanging out with the herd. He passed the leadership baton to a younger goat without a fight. All of those signs pointed to one thing, so I fed him a lot of junk food for a couple of weeks because it made him very happy, and I made arrangements to have him put down peacefully so he wouldn't suffer a lingering decline.

You know your goat better than anyone. I could be wrong and she might have a treatable ailment. But if you think this is her way of telling you it's "time," be at peace with it and spend extra hours with her over the next week or two making her comfortable and happy and giving her what she wants while you make arrangements to give her a painless death. I'm sure you'll make the right decision.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
First thing I do when a goat is off is a check up. Hows her temperature?
Rumen noise snd function? Is she chewing a cud?
Drinking plenty and is poop nice berries? Also check her famacha for anemia.
Hi Cathy
Temp fine. Haven't caught any rules noise nor function nor "burping and chewing" but i may just not be around her when she is. I'm mixing baking soda and salt into her vitamins. She seems to really go for that. Poop is fine, not drinking much water, though.
It's an enigma.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Hi Cathy
Temp fine. Haven't caught any rules noise nor function nor "burping and chewing" but i may just not be around her when she is. I'm mixing baking soda and salt into her vitamins. She seems to really go for that. Poop is fine, not drinking much water, though.
It's an enigma.
Haven't caught any rumen noises.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
I've seen this before and in my experience it's a sign they're getting near the end. And at 14 years old it's ok. Sudden changes in diet during old age are usually a sign that the body is starting to shut down. It happened to my old goat, Cuzco, when he was 15. He stopped eating hay and pellets, and then he even stopped eating grass. He would only eat junk food (donuts, cookies, popcorn, cheesy garlic bread, potato chips, etc.). He also stopped going for his daily walks and he quit hanging out with the herd. He passed the leadership baton to a younger goat without a fight. All of those signs pointed to one thing, so I fed him a lot of junk food for a couple of weeks because it made him very happy, and I made arrangements to have him put down peacefully so he wouldn't suffer a lingering decline.

You know your goat better than anyone. I could be wrong and she might have a treatable ailment. But if you think this is her way of telling you it's "time," be at peace with it and spend extra hours with her over the next week or two making her comfortable and happy and giving her what she wants while you make arrangements to give her a painless death. I'm sure you'll make the right decision.
Thank you! I hear you and will heed your advice. I'll keep you posted.
 

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Probiotics and B complex as two great go tos that won't hurt anything while it's figured out
 

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Do you have farm supply stores where you live? I could tell you what brand names we have in the US, though it's possible they wouldn't be available in other countries. Probiotics come as a paste in a tube or powdered form you mix with liquid. B complex comes in a liquid injectable form and as a paste in a tube. If it would be possible to post a picture of the product, even if it's a link to an online source, or a detailed description of what is available, a member of this forum would try their best to help you make the choices and council how to give the proper dosages.
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
Do you have farm supply stores where you live? I could tell you what brand names we have in the US, though it's possible they wouldn't be available in other countries. Probiotics come as a paste in a tube or powdered form you mix with liquid. B complex comes in a liquid injectable form and as a paste in a tube. If it would be possible to post a picture of the product, even if it's a link to an online source, or a detailed description of what is available, a member of this forum would try their best to help you make the choices and council how to give the proper dosages.

Unfortunately, farm supplies, especially for goats, are few and far behind here in Ireland. I googled and there are no farm stock probiotics available at all! I'll have to check with my vet tomorrow but I doubt they'll have any more luck than I. Otherwise, will any human probiotcs do the same? The other bad news is since Lucy is eating any grain or anything except grass, if it's not in a paste form, I don't know how to administer it to her. Maybe I can mix it with yogurt and sqirt it in her mouth?
I'm pretty sure I can get a b complex injectable from the vet in the meantime.
Thanks.

Any other members on the goat spot from ireland out there?
 

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I am so sorry to hear that probiotics aren't available for livestock there. Farm supplies specifically for goats aren't readily available where I live either, so I use many products normally marketed for cows as off label use in goats. I don't personally know whether human probiotics would work or not, but there are many members on this forum and possibly someone knows the answers to that question. Hang in there, others will join this post and offer some advice about the probiotics hopefully.
 

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Dark beer has different benefits than probiotics do but work together to be a powerful team for gut bacteria.
You can use plan Greek style yogurt. Not the kind with fruit and sugar as sugar destroys good bacteria. Other thoughts are milk Kiefer if you have that available.
Injectable b complex is best for goats with such fast metabolism but do what you can in a pinch. Human b complex pills can be crushed as added to water and drench orally.
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
I found Provita Rumen Stimulant online from Northern Ireland and ordered that. Comes in a powder form so I'm going to have to figure out how best to administer it. Won't get here for a few days though so I'll try some yogurt tomorrow.
Thanks again, everyone.
I think I'll use the beer for myself! :)
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
Does an inactive rumen usually cause a goat to stop eating even if it's not bloat or anything? Will an inactive rumen kill a goat? P.S. I'm not even sure it's the rumen that's not working......I haven't been able to monitor her for long enough to diagnose.
 

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If the rumen Is compromised the goat will often go off feed. A sluggish rumen can cause a few issues...thiamine deficiency (polio) and Enterotoxemia are two very serious issues they can get.
Right now the probiotics and b complex are as a support. We want to prevent more health issues.
You can water down the yogurt and syringe it to her if she won't eat it herself
 

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I hope your goat is feeling better. Sometimes you do need to help them at this age. Ireland is like many other countries, they don't always have the benefit of taking care of livestock like you would a domesticated animal. its sad. Maybe you can also try some honey and cayan peper on her gums. My goats hate yoghurt, so what I do with them is I make their favorite treat and slowly feed it to them. With your girl you may need to syringe it into the back of her mouth. It could be the only way.
I also discovered that dates and garlic help goats rumens..... with all the other things.
 

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Discussion Starter · #20 ·
Update: we got "Ruminate" from the vet and gave it to Lucy (she wasn't too happy with me for that!) and gave her a shot of B12. Thanks to your suggestions. We're supposed to give her more "metabolic stablizer", that's what it's called, twice tomorrow.
I'll keep you posted.
If anyone can give us more advice, I'd appreciate it but......
Thank you all for your advice and input! 💕🐐
 
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