The Goat Spot Forum banner
1 - 17 of 17 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
8 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Back in 2012, I got two Nigerian Dwarf kids from a farm a couple hours away. One of them, Rose, has always been healthy and problem-free. The other, Maggie, has always been plagued with what seemed like small problems. When we brought them home, Maggie would throw her head around a lot, but as a new goat owner (and a young teenager) it took me a few years to realize that what she was experiencing was likely a headache due to a thiamine deficiency. I have always offered free choice minerals and baking soda, and Rose never showed any evidence of deficiencies anything of the sort, but Maggie would regularly get thiamine deficiency headaches until she was a few years old (and now I give her B complex gel regularly). When Maggie was a couple years old, her teats developed despite the fact that she had never been bred, but when we brought a vet out to look at her, she said there was no problem.

Maggie's belly has always been very wide, not just on her left side where her rumen is but on her right side as well. Of the two vets we had had come to see her, neither of them commented on it, so we didn't assume it was an issue despite Rose's belly being quite flat. However, several months ago Maggie came down with bloat, and ever since then I've paid much closer attention to her stomach and digestion. I took her off of grain, and her rumen seemed to start working much harder (I could hear it gurgling and see it moving), but her stomach started getting wider, so I called a vet out for a checkup. He was quite shocked to see Maggie's size, and he wasn't sure of anything that might cause it, or why she would be so wide all around rather than just where her rumen is. This vet is openly less practiced with goats, but he consulted with some colleagues and he put her on a course of Corid, as she had already been wormed twice because I was worried she had worm overload. He also told me to not just put her back on grain, but to work her diet towards one of being heavily grain based, since her stomach only began to get wider once I took her off grain and she was only eating hay and forage.

Since August, I have very slowly increased her grain intake from ~tbsp of grain, shredded beet pulp, and sunflower seeds to ~1/4 cup or so, but within the past week or so her stomach has become a big problem once again. Her regular rumen gurgling changed sound, now sounding almost like a pot bubbling rather than a stomach gurgling. After eating grain, she would sometimes stand in the corner, obviously in pain, seemingly violently spitting up cud and chewing it before swallowing it again. This would only last for a maximum of twenty minutes before she was back to normal and happily eating hay. Then two days ago, she seemingly choked on her grain and had a fit trying to cough it up, but she got back to normal rather quickly. Last night, she choked again, but this time was much more dramatic and extended, and it took maybe an hour for her to return to normal, but she still seemed like her stomach was in pain. I had only given her a little grain last night to see if it was the amount of grain she was eating that was causing her digestive issues or if she just couldn't take any grain period, but I decided to just take her off grain entirely once again after her episode.

Today, she seemed completely normal. Happy and munching on hay, disappointed she wasn't getting grain while Rose was, but otherwise normal. I gave her some goat milk yogurt for the probiotics, and she didn't want to eat all of it, but that didn't worry me. Later, I gave her a little bit of pine to see if she could stomach that, and she pretty violently threw that up within a couple of minutes of swallowing it. However, after a few minutes, she was back to normal and eating hay again. About an hour later, I gave her some Probios, and she seemed normal. But she seemed to have eaten too much hay and started spitting up cud and acting painful again, which was the first time I'd seen her act that way after hay. I gave her some Milk of Magnesia to try and settle her stomach, and she peed and pooped and ate some baking soda, but she's still acting really painful and lethargic. She can't even lie down even though she wants to.

I'm sorry for the wall of text. It's been a months-long journey trying to get Maggie healthy, but I'm extremely worried that there's something serious wrong with her and that she might be at the end.
 

·
Super Moderator
Joined
·
32,237 Posts
I would start by checking her mouth and throat area for sticker, thorn or anything stuck.
Hows her temp?
 
  • Like
Reactions: toth boer goats

·
Super Moderator
Joined
·
32,237 Posts
Hows her rumen function? Do you hear gurgle gasses and burps? Can you see/feel movement?
Could it be she's a gobbler? Putting large rocks in her feeder may help slow her down if so.
 
  • Like
Reactions: toth boer goats

·
Registered
Joined
·
8 Posts
Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Hows her rumen function? Do you hear gurgle gasses and burps? Can you see/feel movement?
Could it be she's a gobbler? Putting large rocks in her feeder may help slow her down if so.
Her rumen function is okay mostly I think? I can hear it bubble, but it's a different sound than it was a few weeks ago. She doesn't burp well, though, and never has. She definitely gobbles, and she's never ever been good about chewing her grain well.
 

·
Super Moderator
Joined
·
32,237 Posts
I would try daily probiotics and for a few days add dark beer. 6 oz is great for a full size adult goat. Adjust down for smaller breeds. Bring the beer to room temp and drench if she won't slurp it up, which some do. Dark beer and probiotics are a powerhouse team to address rumen flora. And try a few larger rocks to make her slow down on her feed. She will have to really work around the Rock. See if that helps some.
 
  • Like
Reactions: toth boer goats

·
Registered
Joined
·
8 Posts
Discussion Starter · #9 ·
I would try daily probiotics and for a few days add dark beer. 6 oz is great for a full size adult goat. Adjust down for smaller breeds. Bring the beer to room temp and drench if she won't slurp it up, which some do. Dark beer and probiotics are a powerhouse team to address rumen flora. And try a few larger rocks to make her slow down on her feed. She will have to really work around the Rock. See if that helps some.
Yes, my original plan was to just give her Probios every day for quite some time as well as some supplemental goat milk yogurt since she enjoys it and could use the extra calories, but since she's gotten worse I'm worried. I ran to town and got some injectable B complex, but I'm worried about underlying issues.
 

·
Super Moderator
Joined
·
32,237 Posts
B complex is good support. Yes, it's strange she keeps choking. She's not super old but still may have tooth issue?
 
  • Like
Reactions: toth boer goats

·
Registered
Joined
·
8 Posts
Discussion Starter · #11 ·
B complex is good support. Yes, it's strange she keeps choking. She's not super old but still may have tooth issue?
Could be. Right now she's incredibly sick, though. I'm worried it might be listeriosis. She's obviously very painful and is keeping her head low or pressed against something, and her body is trembling even though her temp is good.
 

·
Super Moderator
Joined
·
32,237 Posts
I'm sorry. I must have missed that part in your post. Yes that does not sound well at all. If you suspect listeriosis..treat!! Don't wait.
500 mg thiamine every 6 hours (if using b complex give enough to get 500 mg thiamine in her. So if your b complex is 100 mg thiamine she will beed 5 cc every 6 hour
Penicillin 1 cc per 10 pounds sub q every 6 hours
This is on a 24 hour clock.
Dexamethsone 1 cc per 20 pounds IM once daily until well then decrease dose over 5 days OR banamine 1 cc per 100 pounds sub q once a day for 3 to 5 days.
 
  • Like
Reactions: toth boer goats

·
Registered
Joined
·
8 Posts
Discussion Starter · #13 ·
I'm sorry. I must have missed that part in your post. Yes that does not sound well at all. If you suspect listeriosis..treat!! Don't wait.
500 mg thiamine every 6 hours (if using b complex give enough to get 500 mg thiamine in her. So if your b complex is 100 mg thiamine she will beed 5 cc every 6 hour
Penicillin 1 cc per 10 pounds sub q every 6 hours
This is on a 24 hour clock.
Dexamethsone 1 cc per 20 pounds IM once daily until well then decrease dose over 5 days OR banamine 1 cc per 100 pounds sub q once a day for 3 to 5 days.
I don't have any penicillin or dexamethasone (I know I'm poorly stocked) so I'll have to wait til the morning to get those and treat her, but I've already begun treating with the vitamin B
 

·
Super Moderator
Joined
·
32,237 Posts
Hows she doing today ?
Penicillin is easy enough to get over the counter unless you are in California. Dexamethsone or Banamine is per vet. If you know local farmers, especially those who raise horses, they often keep banamin on hand.

A note on Penicillin: be sure to go sub q and pull back the plunger to check for blood before you inject meds . No blood is good to go..if you see blood. Re adjust and try again. Penicillin in the vein can kill a goat.
 
  • Like
Reactions: toth boer goats

·
Registered
Joined
·
8 Posts
Discussion Starter · #15 ·
Hows she doing today ?
Penicillin is easy enough to get over the counter unless you are in California. Dexamethsone or Banamine is per vet. If you know local farmers, especially those who raise horses, they often keep banamin on hand.

A note on Penicillin: be sure to go sub q and pull back the plunger to check for blood before you inject meds . No blood is good to go..if you see blood. Re adjust and try again. Penicillin in the vein can kill a goat.
She is MUCH better this morning than she was last night. I wasn't even sure she would make it through the night she was so lethargic and painful, but when I went to see her this morning she was almost normal (or HER version of normal)! The vitamin B helped SO much, but I'm still starting her on penicillin just to be safe, because I'm not sure what was causing her headaches. I spoke to the vet this morning and he seemed supportive of the penicillin although he's not super well-versed in goats at all, and I will likely call the state vet college later today to see if they have any opinions and see what the cost would be to get her seen there for her regular digestive issues.
 

·
Super Moderator
Joined
·
32,237 Posts
That's good news. Go ahead and give b complex every 6 hours. Won't hurt her at all. Since her digestion system is off. This could decrease her thiamine production and the support of the B complex is needed.. give daily probiotics as well and dark beer for her rumen.
I'm glad your vet is supportive on her treatment.
Goats often press their head against things when they feel bad or in pain. If your vet is good with getting you at least 3 doses of banamine that would help. Dose is 1 cc per 100 pounds. Sub Q. Make sure her temp is not Sub as Banamine can lower her temp and we sure don't want to push a Sub temp lower. 1o1.5-103.5 Is normal range.
 
  • Like
Reactions: toth boer goats
1 - 17 of 17 Posts
Top