Discussion in 'Health & Wellness' started by lottsagoats1, Jun 20, 2020.

  1. lottsagoats1

    lottsagoats1 Well-Known Member

    Apr 12, 2014
    Middle Maine
    I know a lot of people ask if rabies vaccines are needed for their goat herd. Up until a couple of years, I routinely vaccinated for it, then finances got in the way and I had to stop.

    6 weeks ago I found a dead raccoon in the Malamutes dog yard. My old female had a fresh bite just beside her eye. The male looked fine, but, you never know. I had to give both a booster for rabies, even though they had gotten their rabies in January of this year.

    Yesterday morning I had just let the Great Pyrenees out to do her "thing" and check out the yard to make sure her goats and chickens were fine. I had the 2 males, a mature St Bernard x Golden Retrieve cross and a year old Great Pyrenees x Newfoundland on their leashes bringing them out to their dog yard. As I rounded the corner by the horse and Malamute pens, the 2 dogs and I saw the fox at the exact same time. Before I could stop them, they lunged at it and pulled it under the fence. The female Pyr joined in and they killed it. It took all I had to get them to leave it. My son came out after hearing me scream for help (he said he thought people 3 towns over could hear me) but once the fox was dead, they had no further use for it and left it alone.

    While the young female fox looked really healthy, the fact that it was dying in my horse pasture gave me great concern. I called the Maine CDC for advice. They said to have it tested, so I called the Game wardens. My local warden came and took it to the state lab yesterday afternoon.

    24 hours later they called. The fox was positive for rabies.

    Now, even though those 3 dogs are UTD on rabies, they still have to be boostered and quarantined. Big expense, but doable. The horses have to be, also, for 45 days because neither one has had a rabies shot in several years. I was also ordered by the state vet to have the goats done. She almost put them under quarantine because it had been a couple of years, but the fact that they were no where near the area the fox was in had her drop that, but she still said that she wanted to see them vaccinated.

    So, if anyone has questions about whether or not to vaccinate their goats, or other non-canines for rabies- do it if you can. This is going to cost me an arm and a leg for the horses because I don't have a regular equine vet. Plus the pony is a freak and cannot be caught or handled (history of extreme abuse at the hands of humans). If I had to add on the goats right now, I have about 50. I'd be bankrupt.

    On top of this, my only vehicle has a major issue with starting and is going in the garage on Monday to see if it needs a fuel filter. Last time this happened, it cost about 600.00 to fix.
    Ashlynn and Moers kiko boars like this.
  2. Sfgwife

    Sfgwife Well-Known Member

    Feb 17, 2018
    North Cakalaki
    oh goodness i am so sorry for all the added stuff for you!
    Moers kiko boars likes this.

  3. ksalvagno

    ksalvagno Moderator Staff Member Supporting Member

    I'm so sorry that happened.
    Moers kiko boars likes this.
  4. happybleats

    happybleats Well-Known Member

    Sep 12, 2010
    Gustine Texas
    Yikes. I'm sorry you are being hit so hard. No fun. I have had to put my dog on two separate occasions in quarantine after she killed a rabid skunk. Was hard on her being a free roamer. Thankfully it'd on rabies vax.
    Moers kiko boars likes this.
  5. GoofyGoat

    GoofyGoat Well-Known Member

    Sep 21, 2018
    I know Jeffers sells rabies vaccine but some states don't allow non-vets to do it...is Maine one of these? If not it would save you money on the goats.
    I'm sorry you're having a rough go right now between the rabies, car and doeling issue...I really hope it gets better for you?
    Moers kiko boars likes this.
  6. toth boer goats

    toth boer goats Moderator Staff Member Supporting Member

    Jul 20, 2008
    Corning California
  7. lottsagoats1

    lottsagoats1 Well-Known Member

    Apr 12, 2014
    Middle Maine
    Maine is a "you cannot get rabies on your own " states. However, my mother lives in a state where you can buy it, so I am going to see if I can have it shipped there and pick it up when I go down next month. I will vaccinate the goats myself. I found out from talking to my vet this morning when he boostered the dogs (he used to be the state vet years ago, I think he has bad feelings towards the state) that they cannot make it mandatory for me to vaccinate the goats just for precaution because there is no rabies vaccine specifically labeled for goats. OK! Phew. So, I'll vaccinate them and not tell the state. LOL

    BTW....my frail, 90 year old vet made sure the horses were vaccinated this morning for me. Talk about a life saver!

    Anyway, the moral of my story: if there is the slimmest chance that your goats (horses, sheep, warthogs, anteaters or whatever you have ) will come in contact with a rabid animal, save yourself the heartache and drama and get them vaccinated, just in case!
    ksalvagno, Ashlynn, Sfgwife and 2 others like this.
  8. Sfgwife

    Sfgwife Well-Known Member

    Feb 17, 2018
    North Cakalaki

    So if you do vax the goats yourself. Will the state recognized that as being done? I know for peace of mind heck yea do it! But if this same senario happened in the goat pen.... would the state still say they have not been vaxxed because of it? Or would your wonderful vet maybe come sit while you do it and give his blessing of it being done on paper for you? Just a thought that popped in my nog for you while reading this.
    CountyLineAcres likes this.
  9. Ashlynn

    Ashlynn Well-Known Member

    Sep 30, 2017
    Lutz, FL
    Sorry for all the troubles that have hit you. Especially with all that’s going on in the country too, however when that stuff happens I still try to remember that everything happens for a reason. Who knows why this happened. Glad you are safe though! Maybe the vet will be okay with you buying the vaccine in another state and giving it to them on your own but then sign off that it has been done. Not really sure how that would work.
  10. toth boer goats

    toth boer goats Moderator Staff Member Supporting Member

    Jul 20, 2008
    Corning California
    Rabies shots by law have to be given by a veterinarian.
    Ashlynn likes this.
  11. lottsagoats1

    lottsagoats1 Well-Known Member

    Apr 12, 2014
    Middle Maine
    For them to be recognized, yes. After what I just went through, I will NEVER, EVER report a rabid animal on my property again. I will be getting the vaccine myself and keeping the horses and goats UTD on the rabies vaccine, but continue having the vet vaccinate the dogs.

    A week after the rabid fox showed up, a State vet showed up on my farm, with a state Animal welfare agent. The vet started pressing me about getting the goats vaccinated, stating I have to do so. They cannot do that, as there is no rabies vaccine labeled for goats. The goats had zero contact with the fox. They were in the barn and there was no way the fox could get in even if it had been healthy, let alone partially paralyzed by the virus! I showed her the certificates for the dogs, she didn't care about the horses (?!). She was confused about the observation period, kept saying quarantine. For a domestic animal that is UTD on rabies vaccines, there is a 10 or 45 day OBSERVATION period. The Quarantine is for an unvaccinated animal. She kept saying 10 days, until I corrected her. (As an animal control officer, this is all part of my job)

    Then up pops the humane agent, who demanded to be allowed onto my farm to inspect my property and animals. I told her no, I was doing chores and could not stop. She said she would be back the next day, I said I would be working. She then said that she would be there on Tuesday. She said that she was concerned for the health and safety of my animals.

    Their department knows little about goats. When they had the class to certify ACO's, most of the info about goats was wrong, and they left out so many important things about goats that should have been taught. The state has no part in any of the rabies protocol beyond the state vet calling and notifying an owner about the observation period. They were seriously over stepping their bounds on this one.

    Anyway, they legally cannot step foot on my property without my permission or a search warrant. They did not have probable cause for a warrant and I was not about to allow them on my property. They didn't have any kind of protection to wear to limit disease transfer!

    They left.

    On Sunday, a reminder popped up on my phone reminding me of an appointment on Tuesday. I sent an email to the head of animal welfare, stating that I would not be there, and besides, I did not want them on my property due to privacy and disease control.

    He responded, saying I was now on his radar and they would come inspect. He was actually pressuring me to let them violate my Constitutional rights! He said he wanted a sit down meeting. I said fine, but it won't be at my farm. I offered to give them pictures of the farm and goats, numbers of my feed dealers and vet. Nope, they wanted to tromp through my farm.

    So, the agent showed up on Tuesday while I was at my appointment. My son and daughter in law were there. She actually tried to force her way onto my property and made all sorts of threats to my son and daughter in law. She told them she wanted to give me advice on how to care for goats. Someone with zero experience with goats was going to tell someone who had raised them for 38 years, who had 4 years of Animal science in school and was 4H/FFA as a kid and then a 4H leader for goats as an adult, who worked as a small animal vet assistant for 4 years , as well as a large animal assistant for another 2 years how to care for their goats? Nice try. I'm not saying I know it all, because no one every does or will, but she knows nothing and her word would be the one taken by the courts? Not happening.

    So, now I wait. My goats are fat, shiny, healthy and happy. UTD on CDT/Pneumonia. UTD on fecals and dewormings as needed. Hoofs trimmed. Kids pulled and raised heat treated/pasteurized, disbudded and cocci prevention. Copper and cobalt bolused...and so on. Almost all the kids have gone to their new homes, those left are spoken for except for a 1 standard doeling and 4 Nigerian Dwarfs that I haven't advertised yet. I have repeat buyers each year and the dealers start calling me because my bucklings are in such great shape and are so huge, that they give me premium prices for my buckling/wethers being shipped for meat. My farm is not big, but each group has plenty of room and shelter that meets or exceeds the statutes.

    I don't do bullying very well. Time will tell. I am just waiting for him to pull my ACO certification for not allowing them on my property, since animal welfare oversees the ACO program. There will be a battle if that happens.

    I will never report anything to them ever again. If another rabid animals comes onto my property, I will dispose of the body and make sure my animals that came in contact have their rabies booster.
    Sfgwife likes this.
  12. Goats Rock

    Goats Rock Member

    Jun 20, 2011
    NE Ohio
    Wow! I'm not quite sure what comment to make. (I have a lot of comments that are not family friendly regarding figures of authority!)

    It's so good that you know all the ins and outs of the law regarding animals, etc. it's great that your family knew what to do, too! I sure hope things settle down for you.

    Thank you for telling us your story. I guess the 3-S's are the best thing when it comes to a rabid animal.
    toth boer goats likes this.
  13. ksalvagno

    ksalvagno Moderator Staff Member Supporting Member

    Just wow. How horrible. Major government overreach. I hope for your sake this is the end of it.
  14. toth boer goats

    toth boer goats Moderator Staff Member Supporting Member

    Jul 20, 2008
    Corning California