Hard Udder

Discussion in 'Health & Wellness' started by kornhypknotic, May 17, 2009.

  1. kornhypknotic

    kornhypknotic New Member

    273
    May 14, 2009
    Waco, TX
    Hello! This is my first post that's not on the welcome forum! :greengrin:

    Well, the farm where I work has been having a lot of strange health problems with their goat herd this year. We run a raw goat milk dairy and raise primarily Saanens and some Alpine and Nubian crosses. Anyway, it's kidding season, and just this past Thursday (4 days ago) one of our oldest and very best producer kidded two beautiful twin girls! :girl: :girl: :love: The only problem is that the doe, "Falsie" has CAE so we removed her doelings, we are now milking her out by hand, pasteurizing her milk, and feeding it to her kids. I have been milking her out myself daily for several days and her just udder keeps getting bigger and bigger, which would normally be fantastic . . . except I can hardly get any milk to come out of her :worried: Her udder is so big that she's having a hard time walking and her teats are only a few inches from the ground (and she's the biggest and tallest goat we have . . . including the buck).

    A little bit of medical history on Falsie: When I first began work at this farm 8 months ago Falsie had been plagued with chronic mastitis for weeks. My mentor and I sent a sample of milk from each half of her udder to the lab and the result was Enterococcus sp. of mastitis. It only showed sensitivity to Novobiocin and Ampicillin. I gave her an infusion of Albadry Plus (Penicillin and Novobiocin combination) in both halves of her udder and dried her up. Her udder is now pretty badly scarred inside from the mastitis so it's naturally hard in some places. But I've been monitoring it during her dry season and the right half has always been really big . . . never this big.

    I am milking Falsie once a day and I can still squeeze out about 1/4 of a gallon of milk from her . . . but there's so much left in there and her udder is absolutely rock hard. Since she has CAE I expected mastitis problems, but this is getting out of hand. She doesn't even want to walk out to pasture with everyone else anymore. Is there any way I can encourage more milk let-down so I can relieve the pressure in her udder? Is there some way I can make her more comfortable, at least? I feel so bad for her :tears:

    Edit:
    Oops . . . I think I forgot to mention some important stuff:
    1) Her udder is not hot, nor is she feverish
    2) Falsie is 11 years old and has had 2 CAE flare-ups in the 8 months I've been here (pneumonia-like symptoms and arthritis)
    3) We do not separate the adult CAE pos and neg goats because our farm is a non-profit organization and we do not have the funds or the land to take those kinds of extreme measures against CAE. We have only started removing doelings this year to try to breed CAE out of the herd.
    And most importantly! :wink:
    4) Falsie is so named because when she was born they thought her momma had a false pregnancy or never got pregnant at all. Her mom didn't get big in the tummy, didn't come into milk, didn't act like she was ready to kid at all and then one morning Falsie had arrived! :p
     
  2. RunAround

    RunAround New Member

    Feb 17, 2008
    Massachusetts
    Most likely what you are feeling is Edema. not milk. So you wouldn't be able to reduce her udder size by milking. You might ask a vet to give you something like Dexamethasone to help reduce the swelling, but I don't know if it will help since I haven't had to deal with cae before.

    You can try liniment and hot compresses on her udder.

    Does she have a temp?
     

  3. liz

    liz Active Member

    Oct 5, 2007
    Shelocta PA
    Awww Jess, I'm so sorry that you and Falsie are dealing with this. I do know that CAE positive does often have udder issues and it's great that you are treating her, if you can try some warm compresses on her udder as well as massage with warmed peppermint oil, this may encourage her let down as well as break up the congestion. I hope this helps and I know there are more members that have dealt with this, so maybe they can give you even more advice on what to do to help your girl :hug:


    See that....Runaround beat me to it!
     
  4. kornhypknotic

    kornhypknotic New Member

    273
    May 14, 2009
    Waco, TX
    Thanks so much for your quick responses everyone! :hug:

    I was worried about that :worried: . . . how much would something like Dexamethasone cost, do you think? Since the farm is a non-profit we are constantly strapped for $$ . . . any natural and/or cost-efficient remedies, or do you think it's probably serious enough that I should convince my boss to invest in treatment?

    Can I find peppermint oil at a grocery store or maybe even (god forbid :roll:) walmart? I will certainly try warm compresses and massage . . . trying to think of what would be big enough that I can wrap it around her udder . . . maybe I should just put her in the bath tub, lol j/k :shrug:

    I've read that I should be trying the massage and milking every 2 hours at first . . . I'm skeptical as to whether this is a good idea or not. I don't want to encourage her to make more milk when I cant get the stuff out that's in there already. What to y'all think?

    She didn't have a temperature this morning. I will check again this evening and try to get some more milk out of her again . . . I've been worried about milking her twice a day as I don't want to encourage her to produce more milk than she already is.

    I found a picture of a different goat that has a similar udder shape and size: http://static.panoramio.com/photos/original/1603758.jpg
    Falsie's udder is twice that size now . . . at least.

    Can I give her anything to make her feel better until I can call a vet Monday morning? Would aspirin help reduce the swelling and pain? The poor girl, when ever she sees me she waddles over and starts wimpering at me :tears: . . . I just want to give her some relief at least!
     
  5. liz

    liz Active Member

    Oct 5, 2007
    Shelocta PA
    O my! That is a massive udder :shocked:

    Peppermint oil can be found in the candy section of the grocery or even in the pharmacy, just be sure to get the oil and not the "peppermint flavoring"

    A hand towel should be big enough to use for the compress and aspirin should be fine to give, I believe the dose is a 325mg tablet per 10 lbs...this is from the Fias Co farm site http://www.fiascofarm.com/goats/medications.htm#aspirin
     
  6. StaceyRosado

    StaceyRosado Administrator Staff Member Supporting Member

    Oct 4, 2007
    NJ
    I would get some mastitis strips and test her for mastitis just in case
     
  7. capriola-nd

    capriola-nd New Member

    Jul 6, 2008
    Northwest Oregon
    Oh, gosh I am sorry you are going through this. My aunt had a doe with mastitis (purchased her from a "reputable" breeder). She had the same exact conditions as your doe there. Her udder was so hard and it was not mastitis. One of the problems that came with her having CAE. She ended up being put down. . . we did the same exact things you are doing, hot compresses every hour, milking out as much as possible, peppermint oil, etc. It was kind of a hopeless situation.
     
  8. kornhypknotic

    kornhypknotic New Member

    273
    May 14, 2009
    Waco, TX
    Mmhm . . . it's the size of a small semi-. I'll try to get you all a picture sometime. It's unbelievable. I kept telling my boss that it was getting gargantuan, but he seemed to think that was normal for her :shrug: . . . I don't think he actually has seen her himself though. He's a busy guy right now.

    Peppermint flavored udder?! :drool: . . . she would become very popular in the herd :shades:

    Do those things work for goats too? We have some of the cow ones but they look like they have been excavated from an archaeological site 10,000 years ago. I can give them a shot, but I'm sure she has mastitis . . . it's just a matter of getting all the milk out of her so I can give her an infusion that works.

    I made sure that we told everyone who bought a doe from us this year that they either had or did not have CAE, whether the buyers cared to know or not. Before Falsie's problems this year the boss said that CAE had never been a noticeable problem. I had them all tested this year so we would know for sure! :)

    Oh no! That's awful! :tears: Why did she need to be put down? Was the swelling just too much for her or were there other things wrong too?

    Thanks again for all your help everyone! I'm going to go try the massage and hot compresses right now.
     
  9. Dover Farms

    Dover Farms New Member

    Oct 16, 2007
    NW Ohio
    Sounds to me like she is suffering from CAE. And mastitis from CAE is chronic, so you'll always have problems. I wouldn't be breeding this doe anymore. There is no cure for CAE and if affected by it..usually it only gets worse...sorry, but it may be best to put her down.
     
  10. kornhypknotic

    kornhypknotic New Member

    273
    May 14, 2009
    Waco, TX
    Well, so far she is able to get around ok at least. She's not off feed or depressed so we might not be at that point just yet . . . but I'm sure that CAE will be the ultimate reason we will have to put her down when in the end. So far I've been pretty encouraged by her overall positive attitude . . . sometimes I think the only reason she whimpers and looks a little low is only because she misses her babies and not because she feels sick :)

    I've been looking at her records . . . she is the absolute best and most consistent producer this farm has ever had!! I thought goats with CAE were weak and unthrifty milkers? :shrug: !
     
  11. capriola-nd

    capriola-nd New Member

    Jul 6, 2008
    Northwest Oregon
    Her quality of life would have always been poor so they opted to put her out of her misery. She was actually a gorgeous doe with a really nice udder. She and her sister both tested positive for CAE and my aunt's herd of Boer goats are all CAE/CL negative. Best to not risk running them together. . . this disease is not something to take lightly.
     
  12. RunAround

    RunAround New Member

    Feb 17, 2008
    Massachusetts
    Not all cae positive goats are sickly, some are never become sick. Then there are others that will have a sudden onset of symptoms and need to be put down.

    I don't think a positive cae test is a reason to put down a goat. A disease like cae can be safely managed.

    I would try the aspirin, but a vet will be able to give her some banamine which will work much better. At any rate I think a vet should see her because mastitis can become very serious.
     
  13. kornhypknotic

    kornhypknotic New Member

    273
    May 14, 2009
    Waco, TX
    That's the way my bosses think of it . . . I'm inclined to agree especially since our herd has all but three negative does :sigh: . It would be disastrous to the program if we had to cull all the positives.

    I also agree with that too . . . I think it's something to deal with seriously, but not go crazy. "An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure." The way CAE was dealt with here in the past was not at all . . . no test, no selective breeding, nothing. Finally, after seeing Falsie and her troubles, I think it convinced my superiors to take it seriously . . . much to my satisfaction :)

    This afternoon I could tell that the swelling had spread quite a bit since I milked her at 7am. I tried the warm compresses and massage and it seemed to work ever so slightly. Enough that I felt better about giving her an infusion of ToDAY in both halves. The second dose will be given tomorrow morning. I also checked her temp again this afternoon and was shocked to see it was 105 F!!!!!!! :GAAH: :help: So I also gave her 2.5cc penicillin G procaine since she weighs over 200lbs. I'll repeat that twice a day until her fever subsides and probably a little while after. I'll do the massage and warm compresses (I added a little epsom salts to the water in the compresses . . . figured it couldn't hurt :question:) and I plan on doing that 3-4 times a day for . . . . . . . . . . . . a long time :worried: .

    Keep us in your thoughts/prayers :pray:

    BTW: I posted a blog on the World Hunger Relief blogspot of Falsie kidding her second girl :girl: . It's a pretty poor video because I had to remove the kid once I found out she was a doe and I was also a little preoccupied talking to a young volunteer . . . but take a look at her udder . . . then imagine it being 1/4 bigger than that today. http://worldhungerrelief.blogspot.com/2009/05/goat-kidding-season-2009.html

    . . . . also, be sure to note the adorability of the baby :love: . Her name is Ann. She and her sister Arbor were named after a group of volunteers from the University of Michigan :p
     
  14. RunAround

    RunAround New Member

    Feb 17, 2008
    Massachusetts
    Pen G I give at 1cc per 10-20 lbs. Especially with something serious, like mastitis that has gone systemic. I would get a vet out there asap. Systemic mastitis can kill quick, especially if it goes gangrene on you.

    Good luck with her. I will be :pray: .
     
  15. sparks879

    sparks879 New Member

    Sadly, like Jaque said CAE has been linked to a lot of chronic mastits cases. At 11 years old your doe has by passed a lot of the expectations for a CAE positive goat. Like was said some goats never show signs but others just get worse and worse. Even though youre not feeling heat chances are she has a case of mastits. and yes the cow strips will work. A lot of the hardness you are feeling is from scar tissue more then likely built up over the years from the CAE and mastitis. If her udder is nearly on the ground, her attachments are probably becoming very stretched out. The best thing for her would probably be to dry her off and use her kids as replacements. If she is a good milker then chances are her doe kids will be too.
    beth
     
  16. kornhypknotic

    kornhypknotic New Member

    273
    May 14, 2009
    Waco, TX
    Oh, I'm definitely calling the vet tomorrow morning . . . actually I'm going to see a vet myself . . . for an interview for a vet tech program I'm thinking of applying to :wink: maybe I can get her to take a look at Falsie for freebies :greengrin: ! It might be too expensive to have the regular vet come out here and do a physical (in fact, I know it's too expensive for us), but I can maybe go pick some meds up from him.

    But she weighs over 200 pounds . . . that's . . . 100cc?!?!?!?!?! :shocked:

    I just read about gangrene mastitis . . . :worried: :tears:

    :pray: :pray: :pray: :pray: :pray: :pray: :pray:
     
  17. RunAround

    RunAround New Member

    Feb 17, 2008
    Massachusetts
    If she's 200lbs than thats 20cc if you go by the 1cc per 10 lbs. If you go by the 1cc per 20 lbs then it's 10cc. I think I'd go with the 10cc dosage. Do you know for sure she's 200lbs?
     
  18. liz

    liz Active Member

    Oct 5, 2007
    Shelocta PA
    Gorgeous baby she gave you all!

    Yes, her udder is showing her age, the attachments have stretched so theres no where for it to go but down, gangrene mastitis is very serious and a very scary thing to even think of, it comes on very fast and is heartwrenching to deal with. With her temp that high, the pen should bring it down and I hope it comes down quickly. I agree on getting a vets advice asap, and I hope that Falsie pulls through this.
    At her age, it may be best to retire her and her udder capacity would be passed on to her daughters, so you still have milkers for next year provided her doelings are large enough for late fall breedings.
     
  19. kornhypknotic

    kornhypknotic New Member

    273
    May 14, 2009
    Waco, TX
    :doh: :ROFL: omg I need to go to bed right now, lol! I was worried that I would have to unload the entire contents of my vial of penicillin into this goat! :slapfloor:

    I used the tape that you wrap around their chest and it indicates within a 10pound difference how much they should weigh . . . she was off the chart by about 4 inches. The chart ends at 190lbs.

    Thank you :love: and Ann is the weaker of the two kids! I was worried about her at first because she wasn't really interested in walking or eating. I think she's catching up to her big sister though :greengrin:

    That's one good thing about this! She kidded triplet does two years ago and now twin does this year! My boss and I have talked about this being her last season . . . but if we retire her for good that means we can't afford to keep her around and we would have to put her down :worried: . . . I hope it doesn't come to that just yet. She's such a great goat! :tears:
     
  20. liz

    liz Active Member

    Oct 5, 2007
    Shelocta PA
    That would be a shame, but I do know the "retired" girls still eat, luckily the 2 hayburners I have will be here permanently they were my first, it may be best fore Falsie unless you can find her a pet home to retire to.