Udder Edema and miscellaneous related

Discussion in 'Dairy Diaries' started by Anita, Apr 26, 2010.

  1. Anita

    Anita New Member

    May 12, 2009
    Davidsonville, MD
    I have a doe that has udder edema every time she kids. She just kidded her fourth time, again with udder edema.

    Background: It's not mastitis, CAE related or meaty udder, it's definitely udder edema. By the end of the first week after freshening she is milkable, and by now, 3 and a half weeks fresh, her udder is almost completely soft. She also has had weak contractions the last two freshenings, making delivery difficult.

    My questions:

    1. Could the udder edema and the weak contractions somehow be related?

    2. I've researched this online ad nauseum, and it's suppose to present in does that are heavy milkers. She has never been a good milker. I'm wondering if by the time I get the milk really flowing (usually about one week after kidding) the production has been lost due to simply not being able to get the milk out? Or, if she really is genetically a good milker, should the production rebound after the edema is gone?

    3. Has anyone any experience with milking a doe with udder edema before she kids? About a week before she kids the udder edema is evident.

    Thanks for any help!
  2. StaceyRosado

    StaceyRosado Administrator Staff Member Supporting Member

    Oct 4, 2007
    does get a edema right before and after kidding this is normal. I dont see where there is an issue. Thats why I wait till they are 2 weeks fresh before taking udder pictures because the udder looks different once the edema is gone

  3. Anita

    Anita New Member

    May 12, 2009
    Davidsonville, MD
    It is an issue if by the time the edema is gone there is virtually no milk. This doe is almost unmilkable the first several days after freshening. I'm trying to find out if the edema could be hampering milk production, if it could be related to her weak contractions, and if milking her before she kids would relieve the edema, and therefore increase the milk supply.
  4. StaceyRosado

    StaceyRosado Administrator Staff Member Supporting Member

    Oct 4, 2007
    no you dont want to milk her before she kids.

    Are you pulling kids and bottle feeding or are you leaving teh kids on mom?
  5. FunnyRiverFarm

    FunnyRiverFarm New Member

    Sep 13, 2008
    Hudson, MI
    I have never done it but I have heard of people milking does everyday starting 2-3 weeks before they are due to freshen and they say it pretty much eliminates the problem. I think they freeze the first milk they take and save it for when the kids are born then bottle feed them their first meal.
  6. jay13

    jay13 New Member

    Apr 12, 2009
    Central NC
    I can't imagine my girl letting me anywhere near her udder before she kidded! she would jump and hop and act like her teats were on fire if I even tried!
  7. Anita

    Anita New Member

    May 12, 2009
    Davidsonville, MD
    Stacy - Pulled and bottle fed.

    Funny River - Did they milk before freshening specifically to control udder edema? Do you know if the problem was similar, i.e. virtually no milk by the time the edema was resolved?
  8. FunnyRiverFarm

    FunnyRiverFarm New Member

    Sep 13, 2008
    Hudson, MI
    Yeah...they did it because the does had a history of severe edema at freshening. One person I know who has done this runs a dairy...production is very imporant..so yes, I would think that it was done so the does production would not suffer. Edema causes does to dry up because it reduces the udder's capacity so there is constant pressure from what milk is produced...which is a signal to the body to quit producing.
  9. Anita

    Anita New Member

    May 12, 2009
    Davidsonville, MD
    Funny River -- yes, I think that may be what is happenning. Before she kids her udder is full and big, but by the time the edema is controlled, it's tiny. That's what leads me to believe that she may be an excellent milker, but that the edema is stopping production. She is a well-bred doe, and should have good production, but of course, that's no guarantee...

    BTW - I've tried everything I know of short of prescription drugs to control this, i.e., herbals before kidding, massage, frequent milking, massage with mint, Vitamin C. Didn't help a bit.

    I've heard that milking before kidding is hard on the doe because she is in her last week(s) of pregnancy, and then milk production is added on top. This I understand, but the edema has got to be incredibly uncomfortable too, so I just don't know.
  10. goathappy

    goathappy New Member

    Oct 5, 2007
    I think that weak contractions would be due to lack of uterine muscle tone, which could be the result of calcium deficiency, but I don't think that calcium deficiency would cause udder edema. I have a doe who gets edema after she kids and has it for a week or two, I may try the pre-kidding milking thing next time she's pregnant :)
  11. CrossCreekTX

    CrossCreekTX New Member

    Aug 10, 2009
    Central East Texas
    What kind of herbals have you given? Have you tried offering large quantities of parsley or cleavers? Cleavers grows wild here and is very abundant during our cool winters. My goats eat loads of it before they kid.
  12. Anita

    Anita New Member

    May 12, 2009
    Davidsonville, MD
    I gave her "Dsolve", a blend sold by firmeadow.com. She got it for three weeks before she kidded and then double doses after. I don't have the label anymore, so I'm not sure what was in it.

    No, I didn't try parsley and have never heard of cleavers. I did read that dandelion leaves will help, but by the time I found that the edema was mostly gone.

    It's completely gone now, but so is much of any potential milk. :(

    I looked back in my records from last year. Her production is worse this year than last, and she had triplets this year, a single last year.

    I think the edema was worse this year.

    I'm still deciding whether or not to try her one more time this fall. I have lots of time to consider.
  13. jmsdvm

    jmsdvm New Member

    Apr 1, 2014
    The edema and then weak contractions are definitely related. There's an excellent article in pub med about edema and causes related to subtle electrolyte imbalances, stress, and subtle nutritional deficiencies in high producing goats. I suggest a free choice supplement system from Advanced Biological Concepts. A consult with them can be very helpful, for many conditions.
    J.M. Shoemaker, DVM
  14. lottsagoats

    lottsagoats Junior Member

    Dec 9, 2012
    Middle Maine
    I have several does that I have to milk out prior to them kidding because they get so full. You can see they are uncomfortable with those huge, packed udders, I can't imagine trying to get comfortable before and during labor with those big tight, painful udders, so I milk them, save and pasteurize the colostrum and feed it to the kids.

    I find that if I cut back on the protein in their feed starting 2 weeks before kidding, it helps control the edema.

    Vitamin C helps control the inflammation that can cause edema.

    Sluggish labor can be caused by low calcium.
  15. NyGoatMom

    NyGoatMom Shady Acre Homestead Supporting Member

    Really old thread....................
  16. Hollowdweller

    Hollowdweller Member

    May 5, 2011
    When I see what you describe it's usually on does and is sort of related to generalized swelling that is the result of kids being birthed. Maybe anti inflammatories might work but usually I just let it go away.
  17. TDG-Farms

    TDG-Farms Dave (TDG Farms) S.E. Washington State

    Jul 12, 2013
    I would think you would lose the colostrum by pre milking. Or at least a fortified colostrum at least.