Goats/hurt front leg


QUESTION: Hello, I went to feed our new female goat this morning and saw that she is not weight bearing on her front right leg. We just got her a few weeks ago and have her in a pin until she gets accustomed to our farm and puts on a few pounds before she's with our very large buck. She's about a year old. She's not panicky or anything. I've seen her get up a few times today but mostly she's laying down. We live in a pretty remote area on the big island, our closest big animal vet is more than 2 hours away. Do u think we should take her immediately? If not how long should we wait for it to improve before taking her in? Is there any kind of pain medications we can give her that are over the counter? Thank you so much for your time.
Carolina Bennett

ANSWER: Sorry for the delay.  Sounds like she injured her leg - would start her on aspirin - human 325 mg, one of these per 100 pounds body weight every four hours for pain, swelling.  Is she running a fever? (Anything over 102.5 is a fever).  No injuries that you can see?  Let me know - call too if you'd like - 360-742-8310 Donna

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QUESTION: Besides her leg everything seems fine. She's still eating and drinking normally. I think it might be her shoulder... is it common for goats to dislocate easily? Her shoulder looks a bit swollen and she's still not weight barring. I would call but don't know where you are and don't want to ring u in the middle of the night. She has no visible wounds and when she lays down she can bend her leg..... I'm at my wits end. The poor baby has been in this condition way too long (tomorrow will be the 4th day)

Thanks for your time

ANSWER: No warmth? Did you get a temperature?  goats do not usually dislocate their shoulders.  Could be an infection. would start on aspirin and perhaps even penicillin injectable - 3 cc/100 pounds body weight twice a day for 5 days.  Would also need probiotics at that time.  hope this helps - let me know - please call anytime - 360-742-8310

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QUESTION: She could get an infection over night that would do that? She was fine Friday night. Went up and saw her before bed. Then 10 hours later she couldnt walk. Can an infection happen like that?

Hi there -  yes to your question.  She could have been injured with a sharp object and the injury could have been so small that you could not see it, and the infection started.  If you take her temp and it is over 102.5 then that usually indicates a fever/infection.  No swelling in any of the other joints, especially the knees?  Do you know what type of feed/protein amount in the grain she was on before she came to you?  Is she on a  high protein grain currently? A laminitis/founder can cause similar symptoms, but that usually starts only after the goat has been started on too high of a protein diet (anything over 14% protein could cause it in this age/production of goat).  Hope that helps.  


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Donna Ruelas-Semasko/Edelweiss Acres


All goat health care, nutrition, judging questions about all goats - packgoats, dairy goats, pygmy goats, meat goats, fleece goats.


27 years health care/nutrition of all types of goats, 17 years experience in packgoats, 20 years experience in 4H goat projects as leader, superintendent and judge. 20 years experience in putting on goat care/nutrition seminars.

NAPgA, The Evergreen Packgoat Club, 4H, ADGA.

Hobby Farm, many newspapers, 4H newsletters, Packgoat Manuals (youth and general), judging information pamphlets, seminar handouts about health care and nutrition.

4 years of college, ongoing education in goats.

Awards and Honors
Small Farm Award of Thurston County

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