QUESTION: Sweetpea has been doing wonderfully until today.  Last week we lost her sister after being sick for only 2 days.  Today, Sweetpea hung back while everyone else came in for their supper.  When I got her into the barn she didn't go after the food like she usually does.  I took her temp, it was 105.2  I gave her a baby aspirin and 1cc of penicillin.  Her gums are white so I know something is going on but what?  I really don't want to lose another goat especially her seeing as I have saved her once already.  Any suggestions will really be appreciated.

ANSWER: What is the age of the goat?   105.2 is a very high fever - so would definitely start on penicillin at a double dose for the first dose and then 3 cc/100 pounds twice a day intramuscularly for 5 days.  She would also need one 325 mg human aspirin per 100 pounds of body weight every four hours until the fever is down.  Grind up the aspirin and dissolve in a little hot water, cool, and give orally.  Would also add probiotics - a must when a goat is on antibiotics - can use yogurt - twice a day is needed.  Also if the goat is not eating then vitamin B complex at 4 tablets (human) crushed and dissolved in a little hot water, cooled and given orally twice a day until she is eating again.  You can mix all the miscellaneous oral items together.  What happened to the other goat - symptoms?

Hope this helps - let me know.  Donna

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QUESTION: Sweetpea is approx. 3 months old and weighs probably 25 lbs.  As for Ginger, on Sat. she was fine, vying for my attention and wanting to be petted.  On Sun. she didn't feel well so I gave her a shot of PCN and aspirin.  Monday I gave her another shot.  Tues. when I got home from work she was gone.  Her symptoms were, she didn't come to the barn with the other goats, she had a fever and she acted like she didn't have the energy to stand up. I was devastated because she was absolutely adorable.  Do you think it may be worms?

ANSWER: Thanks for the update.  Was Ginger up on her CDT vaccinations? No injuries that you see on her? Did you check the lower inner eyelids?  If white to light pink that would indicate anemia and the barber pole worm, but that generally does not cause fever.  Either an infection or enterotoxemia could cause the fever and no energy.  If the penicillin was given subcutaneously that only partly helps - antibiotics really need to be given intramuscularly.  

Sweetpea should receive a CDT toxoid booster of 2 cc now.  Also should get 1 cc of penicillin twice a day (intramuscularly) for 5 days, along with the probiotics and vitamin B complex.  Hope this helps - let me know - Donna

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QUESTION: It is a sad morning.  Sweetpea died during the night.  I had gotten the fever under control, given her the CDT booster, wormed her and given the PCN.  I was pushing fluids because she wasn't drinking and refused to eat.  She wasn't even interested in drinking mom's milk.  I tried everything I could think of and all your suggestions to no avail.  Whatever this was it was very quick. Both of them died within 2 days of showing any symptoms.  There were no injuries that I could see.  
I am now worried about the rest of the herd.  I have given all the babies their CDT booster.  I will worm them all tonight.  I just don't know what else to do to protect the rest of them.  Should I start feeding the medicated goat feed?

So sorry to hear.  This sounds like enterotoxemia - quick acting unfortunately and high fever.  Keeping up on the CDT vaccination regimen (2 weeks, 4 weeks, 2 months, 3 months, 6 months, 9 months at 1 cc and then starting every year at 2 cc) along with giving a CDT booster for any stressful times - weaning, change in diet, etc. Glad you have given the other kids their CDT booster.  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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