Goats/sick MaMa Goat


QUESTION: First, we started out with NO goat knowledge 6 months ago and we are learning fast, I just pray fast enough!
Our Saanen delivered one beautiful, healthy baby 3 days ago. When we got MaMa, 3 months ago, the man we bought her from told us her udders were too large for her last babies to nurse so we would have to milk her and bottle feed; he told us to expect at least twins, maybe triplets. She delivered only one, then the placenta. Perfect delivery, seemingly perfect health up to delivery and first several hours after.
We were/are not able to get any milk. Her left side looks as though milk never came in, her right looks engorged, but no milk will come out. We have been very careful not to 'over milk' her, but we have no prior experience. We have researched much about Mastitis and it seems to line up. We had already tried warm compresses, she is not happy about it. She will not let us put salve on.-very discouraging- She is so friendly, we touch and pet her. It is just obviously painful on her teets.
Tonight when studying, I came across the syptoms for Ketosis, which fit the rest of her behavior. She has been in the corner, but she does love on baby, she is almost staggering-weakish, rubbing her head on the fence and me, and digging.
We gave her a banana-her favorite-with Molasses and oats on it and some loose mineral. She was on schedule for worming, we did it today with Positive Pellet.
She seemed depressed yesterday, not as much today, but not her normal.
Recap- she is digging a lot, weak/'staggery', off to herself, no milk one side engorged on other, she does have a good appetite about 80% of her normal, and staying to herself.
Our thoughts are to try PenG --howmuch? IM or SubQ? how long? times a day? not at all? what body part?-- if that takes the swelling down try compresses and/or udder balm and wash her teets with Iodine?
Also, feed corn syrup/ molasses? to treat the 'maybe' Ketosis?
Any help you can share will be most apprecited! I am also well aware the only thing we may have gotton right is that she is a goat:).

ANSWER: Use  penicillin if that is all you have.  Many bacteria are resistant to it. 6 ml per 100 lbs. sq twice a day for 2-3 days (above armpit or in neck area) then once a day for another 2-3. Oxytetracycline is often better and you only have to give it every 48 hours, so the goat doesn't get so upset about being poked a lot. You need to get an intramammary infusion from feed store and nutridrench  too. Do treat ketosis and do not give grain at this time. Hot water for to drink and whatever roughage you can find to get her rumen going well. Gradually give alfalfa. She should have had this during last two months of pregnancy. Compresses are good, as is peppermint oil in lotion or another oil. Try to milk from time to time. How is the baby doing? Do you have milk for Her? Let me know if I missed anything. And do get goat health care. It will really help. Good luck!

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QUESTION: Thank you so much for your quick response!
Can you tell me where to get Oxytetracycline? We did search. We don't have anything yet, still trying to get something.
We studied briefly the intramammary infusion, hoping to avoid it for her- and us. The most popular seems to be the ToDay product; we only have 'for cows' available, is that safe/okay?...or should I seek something different?
I will stop grain, she only gets minimal regularly. Her regular diet is Florida scrub and kitchen scraps, by scrap I mean stuff I'd still eat- only fruit and veggies, coastal as she wants, a salt block, and we started probiotics when she delivered. Her rumen does seem a little suppressed, but okay, she is eating palm and oak, she has very green coastal in with her; I will switch to Alfalfa in small amounts.
Thanks for the info about alfalfa during pregnancy, new to us and we are fairly well studied.
We will continue compress and massage w/ Vermont's Bag Balm? or switch to something else? and try to milk.
On my way to get nutridrench now.
Baby is strong and growing rapidly. Drinking 25 oz. yesterday, day 3, of milk replacer :{, MannaPro and Durvet Colustrum supplement. She is drinking water and trying to chew on everything mom is eating:). Her stool has become a little loose today,  but she seems to feel good.
Vet care is limited at best. We live in the city with Pet Vets and Equine Vets... LOOKING for Goat/sheep vet!
My high school son is enrolled in Langston U's Master Goat Breeder Program and he is starting a Goat/Sheep Breeder's Program from Penn State in Jan., and already talking to KY State and U of Florida is available to him...so if nothing else one will be available in a few years...Lord help us!
You can not know how thankful we are to have your life line of help!!!!

ANSWER: Most feed stores carry oxytetracycline. The best formulation is called biomycin. Doesn't sting as much. If you still need to get penicillin, get procaine pen G. Yes, you can use Today in goats. It isn't that bad. You will learn that almost nothing is labeled for goats.And goat vets are hard to find. Some think goats are treated like sheep, but it turns out there are quite a few differences. That is great that your son is getting educated on goats. I think we are at a turning point now, as meat goat industry is growing. There will be much more research on goats and many more people interested.

Let me know if you have more questions.

---------- FOLLOW-UP ----------

QUESTION: Well, first we were worse and now we seem to be getting better thank the Lord! I couldn't get anything done with her yesterday, it was Sunday all our feed stores are closed... I realized this on my way to get nutridrench and PenG...
She has had her Probiotic everyday. She has not wanted any more loose mineral. I am thinking of giving her back her salt block? I pulled it when I gave the loose mineral.
Her appetite is good... lots of roughage.
She has been eating up her corn syrup and molasses on bananas. Her Ketosis symptoms seem very improved. She is standing and not walking with that 'heavy head' way.
I gave her her first PenG injection this afternoon, she did great!
6cc's SQ behind/in her arm pit... is this right?
It would have been sooner, but my son had surgery this morning so we stopped at the Farm Store on our way home... My son is doing great by the way...I tried to get Biomycin or comparable and nobody carries it around here.
I was also not able to get the intramammary infusion, our store doesn't carry it, it is a week to order... I can order it faster, but I have another store I can make it out to tomorrow.
The good news is her bag's right side is looking somewhat improved and her left is still good. I still plan to do the intramammary infusion, I am just thankful our time delay isn't showing a worsening of symptoms!

If I can not 'milk her out' can I still do the Intramammary infusion?

Baby only wanted an ounce or so this morning, but by the time we got home this afternoon she finished 8.5 oz. in minutes and curled up on me and went to sleep. She still has some lose stool, but her energy is okay. I'm on my way out to give her another bottle for the night.
Please let me know if I am missing anything, and again thank you so much for your guidance and for your time!!!!!

It sounds like you're doing great . So glad to hear of the improvement. Try to milk, to relieve pressure. But you can do the infusion even if you cannot milk out. Also, I know it's lots of work, but  if you can, it is better to give baby smaller amounts more frequently. Keep up the good work, and let me know if more questions come up.


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Cheryl K. Smith


Goat Health Care; basic goat management. Author of Goat Health Care (2009) and Raising Goats for Dummies (2010)


Publisher of Goat Health Care, www.goathealthcare.com. I have raised miniature dairy goats since 1998. I published Ruminations, the Nigerian Dwarf and Mini Dairy Goat magazine for 7 years and mentor other goat owners, as I was mentored for my first years.

American Goat Society (AGS), The Miniature Goat Registry (TMGR)

Raising Goats for Dummies (author) Goat Health Care (Editor and Author), Ruminations, Dairy Goat Journal, Issues in Law and Medicine, Topics in Health Records Management, Oregon Bar Bulletin, Midwifery Today, Countryside

BS, Health Information Administration JD, Law

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