Q about abscesses

Discussion in 'Health & Wellness' started by ZipperDoo, May 5, 2010.

  1. ZipperDoo

    ZipperDoo Member

    132
    Apr 18, 2010
    Now, I've been wondering this ever since I heard this story, so please bare with me.

    At the "dairy" I was working at for several months, the owner had several goats with abscesses. My familiarity with abscesses is that they are an infection in/under the skin that can be extremely painful, and eventually rupture. After rupturing, an animal runs a serious risk of it festering if it is not kept properly clean/treated.

    The goop inside an abscess is just pus - the color indicating how bad the infection is. White = not as bad as it could be, yellowish = kind of bad, green = really bad, brown = GET A VET. Of course smell has a lot to do with it too, and knowing the difference between the smell of necrosis and the smell of simple infection/irritation.

    This one goat in particular had an abscess on the back of her bag that ruptured while she was in the milking parlor. I was the only one in there at the time, so I squeezed all the pus out (over two TABLESPOONS of goop that made me have to stop using my green-tea extract toothpaste) and squeezed a little peroxide into it since she was dry on that side of her bag anyway thanks to a bad run of mastitis. Sealed up, stopped bleeding, didn't puff back up.

    Later, the owner of the farm was talking to me about it, and stated that abscesses should NEVER be squeezed out (she said as she was squeezing it out) because the goo inside of it is highly contagious, and getting any of that pus on you will give you abscesses.

    ... Now, I'm no expert. But that just doesn't sound right to me. I allowed myself to show some skepticism, and she stated that "someone she knew" got a little of the pus in her eye, and the entire side of her face abscessed.

    I'm really disinclined to believe that. So, because I am in fact NOT a goat expert, or a vet, I'm curious to see what you guys think?

    Thank you!

    (And, as I'm blogging about my experiences at this "dairy", I will be posting more questions like this so that I can be accurate in my blogging.)
     
  2. FunnyRiverFarm

    FunnyRiverFarm New Member

    Sep 13, 2008
    Hudson, MI
    The pus in abcesses caused by injury (splinters, thorns, etc) are generally not contageous. The pus in Caseous Lymphadenitis (CL) abcesses is highly contageous to goats, sheep, and humans...

    The abcess you described does not sound like CL...however it is a good idea to isolate goats before cleaning out any abcess as a precaution. CL pus tends to be white, cottage cheesy in texture, and has no odor.
     

  3. ZipperDoo

    ZipperDoo Member

    132
    Apr 18, 2010
    All the abscesses on her goats is an off-white light greenish color and REEKS. Except for one goat who has them right under her ear behind her jawbone, that's just white and creamy and dribbles out all the time (ew. Ew ew ew ew ew....)
     
  4. toth boer goats

    toth boer goats Moderator Staff Member Supporting Member

    Jul 20, 2008
    Corning California
    I agree..CL is highly contagious... the breeder you were talking to... is very correct in telling you that... "if it is CL" .... all abscesses should be handled... as if... it were CL.... for safety reasons to you and other goats.... To be sure ....what you are dealing with...you could take in a sample of it.... to be tested.... always wear rubber gloves and clean up the area thoroughly... after treatment ...dispose of all yuck and sterilize any equipment used ....... isolate the animal ...away from the rest of the herd.... it may not be CL ...but be very careful with any abscesses you may find.... seems odd... that there are so many abscesses....in one herd .....testing the abcesses ...may not be a bad idea... :hug:
     
  5. ZipperDoo

    ZipperDoo Member

    132
    Apr 18, 2010
    I was very safe... I'm fastidious, so there were gloves involved, and all the tools I used to clean it all were either thrown away or boiled after being thoroughly cleaned.

    If you'd ever been to this farm you wouldn't be surprised at all the disgusting and abhorrent things going on with that herd. :\

    And yet the dairy is Grade A. This is why it is so important to KNOW where your food comes from! >.<

    ETA -

    I don't work there anymore. I'm not on speaking terms with the owners anymore for a list of reasons as long as I am tall.
     
  6. toth boer goats

    toth boer goats Moderator Staff Member Supporting Member

    Jul 20, 2008
    Corning California
    Glad you were safe about it....great job and thinking... :thumb: :wink:

    Woe :shocked: Grade A dairy...Hmmm .....I wonder who inspects it...
    That sounds really scary .... :hug:
     
  7. ZipperDoo

    ZipperDoo Member

    132
    Apr 18, 2010
    Easily the worst job EVER. And I've worked call centers.
     
  8. toth boer goats

    toth boer goats Moderator Staff Member Supporting Member

    Jul 20, 2008
    Corning California
  9. ZipperDoo

    ZipperDoo Member

    132
    Apr 18, 2010
    TY. :) I'm still working on getting it all written out on my blog. More for my own peace of mind than anything, but if you wanted to join in the horror, I'd be glad to link you. lol
     
  10. kelebek

    kelebek New Member

    Oct 5, 2007
    South Texas
    Some of the abcesses that you are talking about do not sound like CL - however the one under the ears REALLY concerns me.....
     
  11. liz

    liz Well-Known Member

    Oct 5, 2007
    Shelocta PA
    DITTO!


    One of the many reasons why I either grow it myself or know exactly where my food comes from!
     
  12. ZipperDoo

    ZipperDoo Member

    132
    Apr 18, 2010
    Yeah, that goat isn't exactly the healthiest one they've got either. :\

    I asked about those abscesses and was told they're just always there and to ignore them.

    Kind of hard when the goats are friendly and you're walking through the barn petting the faces of 20 saanans that all look identical. Scritch scritch, scritch scritch, scritch squelch. EEYAAAGHHUUUEEEGHHH ffffllllppppbbbtttt GAHHH! Ew ew ew ew ew ew ew.

    >.<

    Fortunately I never "caught" anything, but I always darted inside to wash my hands. Pus is pus and I'm mildly OCD. >.o

    There's a laundry list of things that, were they my goats, I'd have them tested and treated for. But while I was there it was pretty much the way to go to try one or two things about a problem, and if they didn't work just forget the problem is even there.

    SO glad I left.
     
  13. ZipperDoo

    ZipperDoo Member

    132
    Apr 18, 2010
    Oh my...

    Okay, so you guys got me curious and I started researching CL. Mind you this dairy started out the year with 80 goats (give or take, they had no idea how many goats they actually had/have) and as of now, about 30% of the goats have died (18 had died when I left, 4 more were very ill) and all dying of the same thing which the owner of the farm "diagnosed" as ketosis. (Personally it looked more like an iodine deficiency to me, but again, I am NOT an expert on goats)

    After reading several web pages about CL, I think that might actually be it... Two of their goats have the abscesses under their ears. One goat's are open oozing abscesses, the other goat's had yet to rupture at the point I left their farm for good.

    Another goat had mastitis in one side of her bag, and after the bag retracted she got that nasty abscess on it that I got the pleasure of squeezing and cleaning out.

    70% of the goats that died all displayed the same symptoms before they "crashed". They would begin to wobble, then they'd become paralyzed, then they'd die. (usually days or weeks after becoming paralyzed, being isolate from the herd, and left to sit in their own swill until the owner decided to put it down while hoping if they left it long enough it would just die on it's own.)

    This sounds CL related? Or am I just trying to find a solution to the problem? lol

    Retrospective sleuthing kind of sucks. Sigh.
     
  14. crocee

    crocee New Member

    Jul 25, 2008
    Northeast Arkansas
    Doesn't sound CL related to me. It sounds more like a deficiency. The wobbling and paralysis sounds like a B-1 deficiency. With Ketosis they would have a sub normal temp and go off feed. B-1 deficiency causes problems such as balance and other nervous system issues. They start out by star gazing or staring off into space and the head twisting toward the back. This is actually called goat polio and can cause death rather quickly. Listeriosis another that acts similar but is caused by bad feed. For it to be CL related the abscess would have to be in the brain or spinal column.
     
  15. ZipperDoo

    ZipperDoo Member

    132
    Apr 18, 2010
    They never star gazed, nor arched their necks over to their backs. The ones that got vitamin B shots never showed any improvements, either. :\
     
  16. MiGoat

    MiGoat New Member

    304
    Apr 21, 2010
    West Michigan
    I'd like the link to your blog!