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Goats/Sub-Q ivermectin


QUESTION: Our goat kidded and the following day had bottle jaw.  We were told to either inject sub-q or do oral dose of ivermectin.  We gave a sub-q shot of ivermectin at 1cc per 85 pounds body weight.  I just read your comment about sub-q not being good for goat - what is going to happen to our goat now that we gave a sub-q shot of ivermectin?

ANSWER: Are you sure this is bottle jaw?  If it is then anemia is the cause, not worms.  And, injectable ivermectin is not meant for goats, does not work, and subcu injections do not work well for goats either.  With that said, what are the other symptoms the goat is having? Are her lower inner eyelids white? Is she eating? What is her body condition? Let me know - concerned that you might have an incorrect diagnosis. If it is anemia, then regular intestinal worms, unless she has thousands of eggs on a fecal study, then they do not cause anemia.  The barber pole worm or liver flukes cause anemia.  Or if she bled out a lot during kidding that could have caused it.  Lots of possibilities.  Please let me know -  Donna

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QUESTION: I did not get a professional diagnosis - I saw pictures online and it looked just like the pictures of goats that had been diagnosed with bottle jaw.  Her lower inner eyelids are pink and she is eating hay/grain/drinking.  Her body condition is good - not over or underfed.  She does have a dry coat.  She did not bleed out a lot during kidding.  Your thoughts?  Thanks so much for your help!  -Lisa

Thanks for the info.  If the lower inner eyelids are pink then she is not anemic.  If a goat is not anemic then it is not bottle jaw - the anemia causes excess fluid to accumulate in certain areas, and one of the main areas is the jaw.  This is usually caused by the barber pole worm in goats.  But, with the pink lower inner eyelids that does not correspond to that.  Membranes would usually be white or very light pink.  It certainly is possible she could have anemia and not show such a color change.  So you are seeing a jaw that looks puffy? Underneath the jaw is puffy too?  Would advise taking a temperature to be sure we are not dealing with an infection - tetanus or another Clostridium type infection - anything over 102.5 would indicate a fever/infection.  Glad she is eating and drinking.  Is she dehydrated at all?  Pulling out the chest skin an inch and then allowing it to go back will show this - if it retracks to original position quickly she is not dehydrated, if not then she is dehydrated.  Dehydration can cause some bottle jaw type symptoms.  Is her poop pelleted? If so then she does not have worm overload.  If the swelling is underneath the jaw mainly then possible iodine deficiency could be causing that.  Any chance she was stung by a bee or other insect?

Would check her temp.  If fever then would start her on intramuscular penicillin 3 cc/100 pounds body weight twice a day for 5 days.  Also would need probiotics at that time.  

The swelling could be an allergic reaction - anything new in the pasture? or do you see bees around? Could try her on children's benadryl orally to see if that helps - use of children's dosing works well.  

Ivermectin does not kill the barber pole worm and is not advisable to be given to does anyway as it is hard on the kids drinking her milk.  If you want to treat you could use Safeguard horse wormer at three times the body weight to find the dosing on the plunger and then put the lock on it and give orally, once a week for three weeks.  You also would need to give her iron tablets or Geritol tonic liquid (human dosing) to help with the anemia.  None of this would hurt the kids.  

Let me know - hope this helps - Donna


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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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