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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
A good portion of my goats have "fish tails" during part of the year and I've heard this is most like due to copper deficiency, is that correct? are there any other minerals, or perhaps parasites, worms, etc that could cause this? what about hard water with lots of dissolved minerals in the water, I've read/heard that can "lock up" vital minerals from their diet or supplements causing them to develop deficiencies.

Would hi worm loads cause fish tails? would it be wise to do a stool test to check for worm loads?

if this is mainly or totally a copper deficiency, what is the best way to correct it? I use Natural Way Minerals Hi Brix Goat mineral with Thorvin Kelp mixed together, free choice. I also put out Redmond real salt free choice.



thanks!
 

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Yes, Fish tail is caused by copper deficiency.
We copper bolus . 1 gram.per 22 pounds has been proven safe and effective.
High Sulfur, iron and calcium are copper antagonists and if either is high in water it can indeed prevent proper usage of copper in the goats diet.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
thank you very much. can anyone please explain how copper bolus works in the body of goats? I know they are little copper rods, but I don't know much else about them. What is the exact chemical makeup of the rods? are there any other "ingredients" to copper bolus (rods) other than the copper itself? can the copper bolus be put in a water drench gun and give it to them that way?

any other thoughts or advice would be appreciated. thanks!
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 · (Edited)
thank you very much. can anyone please explain how copper bolus works in the body of goats? I know they are little copper rods, but I don't know much else about them. What is the exact chemical makeup of the rods? are there any other "ingredients" to copper bolus (rods) other than the copper itself? can the copper bolus be put in a water drench gun and give it to them that way?

any other thoughts or advice would be appreciated. thanks!
I found a source with answers to many of my questions:

https://theorganicgoatlady.com/easiest-way-copper-bolus-goats-need/
 
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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
and how often do you give copper bolus? once every 6 months?
 

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Fair-Haven
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WE cannot tell you how often to give it. Highly dependent on your area, water, overall diet etc. Start with 2x a year and if you feel it's not adequate, you can always do more frequently
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Thanks. is it OK if I would mix the copper rods with alfalfa meal and put it in a dish and feed each goat that way? Is it OK if they "chew" the rods with food in their mouth before they swallow it like that?
 

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and how often do you give copper bolus? once every 6 months?
You can give them as little as every three months, but you should really go by looking for signs your goats are deficient. Go by the signs, not the schedule. ;)

As far as how to give it to them, I would be concerned that if you gave it via drench and some went into the lungs accidentally, that would be a problem. I know lots of people who open up the capsules (or not) and hide the contents in various treats such as bananas, fig newtons, applesauce, or anything really, that they like well enough to not think twice about what's really in it.;)
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
how fast have any of you seen changes or improvement in your goat's condition after beginning to use copper bolus? Like goats that had fish tails, how long before they grew in? I had one goat that had a bald tail tip in December before I started giving the Natural Way Minerals, and now the tip is covered in hair but she still has a bit of a fish tail look. several others with fish tails too.

Yep chewing some of it is okay. I mix applesauce, and crushed up alfalfa pellets together and then mix the wire particles into that. They love it!
sounds great, thank you!
 

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It can take quite a while to see improvement. I had huge copper deficiency problems starting last May and took probably until December for one of my doe's fishtails to be gone, and that was with dosing every three months. The fist tail is the last thing to turn around. You should see improvement in coat condition and color before that though.
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
It can take quite a while to see improvement. I had huge copper deficiency problems starting last May and took probably until December for one of my doe's fishtails to be gone, and that was with dosing every three months. The fist tail is the last thing to turn around. You should see improvement in coat condition and color before that though.
any idea what led to the copper deficiency in your goats? last fall we had an early winter and I began feeding hay in November and my well water has lots of dissolved minerals, and last years hay was very low in nutrients from all the cloudy rainy weather, and then I had a couple weeks where life got too busy to keep up with their daily herbal supplements (before I started the free choice supplements as noted above)and all that led to deficiencies and fish tails in a hurry by early to mid December
 

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Fishtails take a while to correct, YES they are from copper and not parasites (though copper issues can make goats more susceptible to parasites so a fecal test would not hurt). The first sign that will correct is the coat, it will be sleeker and if there is rough or curly hair I have seen it resolve within a month of the first bolus. Fishtails might need multiple boluses to resolve a situation.

I have deficiencies because of hard well water, I have a disposable horse hydrator filter which helps a little bit but well water is a losing battle and it is unlikely you will eradicate deficiencies completely.

I like to open my bolus into a spoonful of applesauce and let my goats slurp it up.

Don’t bolus on a schedule - give one bolus and then wait 3-4 months and if there is no improvement or condition worsens, bolus again.

What herbal supplements were you giving?
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
thanks, I was using Fir Meadow kop-sel and better daze and Thorvin kelp as daily mineral and vitamin supplements. It seemed to barely meet their needs, then life got crazier than normal and I missed a week or so giving them the supplements and the deficiencies showed up in a hurry because winter came early in late October and November, which basically stopped pasture use and I started feeding hay and well water at least a month earlier than normal, and hay nutrient levels were horrible last year from very cool cloudy rainy weather. They hardly drink any water during the growing season when they are on pasture. it was the perfect storm for deficiencies to show up when that happened last November.

and I still use Fir Meadow DWorm A and GI Soother for worms/parasites regularly. I think my goats might have a hard time with worm loads due to them being copper deficient much of the time. I'm hoping to correct that with copper bolus

thanks
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
Yeah. I was told if you give them beter daze, kop sel, and kelp at least 3 times per day, then the herbs would meet all their mineral/vitamin supplements. That's not affordable for most people as the herbs are very expensive for an average sized herd to be given that much, nor possible with most people's schedules. you can't just put them out free choice either, or they will eat so much at once because they will consume them like food. they won't overdose because they are nothing more than plants in a powder form, but they would consume so much that they would eat a fortune in a short time if they were offered free choice.
 
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