Goats/My goat Callie

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QUESTION: Hi Donna:  I had called you yesterday about my goat Callie passing clots.  You had recomended vitamin K.  I am unable to purchase it without a prescription here in NJ.  However, my mom was able to get a friend of hers, who is a vet,  agree to see her.  The vet has had some past experience with goats and sheep, but does not consider herself an expert.  The vet asked me if I could get the proper dose amount that she sould give her.  I know you had said twice the human does, I believe twice a day.  The vet has the liquid form so would give it by needle. I have a 430 appointment EST.   Also Callie may have mastitis.  Her nipples are very red and her bag is pretty hard.  I appreciate your help.

ANSWER: HI there - You could order the oral vitamin K online - it is much easier and less problematic than the injectable.  I am surprised it is not available as it is just a vitamin.  

With that said, vitamin K1 injection would work, but again can be problematic in goats - deaths can occur, hematomas, allergic reactions, etc.  And, the injection needs to be given very slowly as it stings.  The dosing is usually 0.5 to 2.5 mg/2.25 pounds (1 kg) body weight.  You'll need to check the label but probably the amount of vitamin K is 10 mg/ml.  Then you need to find the body weight of the goat, figure out how many mg you need and then from there figure out how many ml need to be given - as this is injectable and is meant to be used in case of massive hemorrhaging, I would go with the least amount of the dosing, that is use the 0.5 mg/2.25 pounds of body weight - and then, that may even be too much.  What color are the doe's lower inner eyelids?  This would give us an idea of how much she is bleeding - white would indicate a high blood loss, pink to light pink would be less so of blood loss.  The injection can be given either subcutaneously or intramuscularly - if you are not giving the injection then would let the veterinarian decide which they are most comfortable giving.  With that said, though, I give all injections intramuscularly in the rear thigh muscles using a 20 gauge 3/4 inch needle for adult goats.  The larger the needle (16 or 18 gauge) the more chance there is of hematoma and tearing of the muscles.  Hope that helps.

Sounds like mastitis.  For that I advise penicillin at 3 cc/100 pounds body weight twice a day for 5 days.  Along with this I also advise using a cow preparation called Today or Tomorrow (Today is if you are going to try to get her back into milk after the infection is cleared, and Tomorrow is for just drying her up after the infection) - this is an intramammary infusion placed into each side of the udder - it has a plastic tip on it that you insert into the nipple orifice and then you would use half of the tube into each side of the udder - re dose in two days.  After you push in the medication, remove the tube end and squeeze closed the nipple and then massage that side of the udder.  You can also use epsom salts in hot water and then soak a towel in it and then place that to the udder for a few minutes each day.  Another help with inflammation and hardness is to use cabbage leaves that have been placed in hot water and heated just to where they are limp - then place as many cabbage leaves as you can to each side and hold in place for a few minutes each day.  Yup, this sounds weird but it does work.  Again, during the time she is on antibiotics she needs to be on probiotics too.  

Hope all this helps - keep me posted - thanks - Donna

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QUESTION: HI I wanted to let you know how Callie is better and  I thank you for your help.  Vet ordered three shots for 3 days, Thiamin, Penicillin G and a broad range antibiotic.  We are continuing the probiotics and are also giving her a water, molasses mix in am.  She doesn't appear to be loosing a lit of blood , which is good so no vitamin K was needed.  She also does not have mastitis which again is good.  She still has a tremor, so we are keeping a coat on her, it has been freezing here!  We also put her pal, another Doe in with her to keep her company.  Vet drew blood, chem panel looks good, white blood cells are a bit elevated, but not awful.  She cultured the discharge and there is bacteria, but again she said she expected that.  She is consulting with a friend at Pennsylvania's New Bolton teaching university to make sure she hit all bases and she is calling the original doctor as well to review everything with him.  Can a doe have a normal pregnancy after an experience like this?    Thank you again for all your support.

Answer
Thanks for the update.  Glad Callie is doing better.  Only issue I see is that two antibiotics at the same time cancel each other out - my choice is always penicillin.  Many vets do not understand that giving two antibiotics at once cancels their effects, so the goat is getting no antibiotics at all.  To answer your question though about having a normal pregnancy after this, yes it is quite possible.  Only issue is that once a doe has mastitis they are at a greater risk to get mastitis again with the next pregnancy.  Hope that helps - Donna

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Donna Ruelas-Semasko/Edelweiss Acres

Expertise

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

Experience

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.

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

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

Education/Credentials
4 years of college, ongoing education in goats.

Awards and Honors
Small Farm Award of Thurston County

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