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Goats/older pygmy goat with sore front legs

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Question
My pygmy goat is 12 years old.  She is having pain in her front legs. She has always been healthy but I can tell that her front legs are hurting her.  What is the best pain reliever I can give her.

Answer
Do her legs look arthritic?  Are the knees/carpal joints swollen? Do the legs feel hot to touch? Is she running a fever (anything over 102.5 is a fever/would indicate an infection)? Is she eating a high protein grain, more so than she has in the past? Are her hooves in good shape?  Did she over eat on grain or alfalfa in the days prior to her looking like is in pain? Is she eating and drinking well?  Is she grinding her teeth (indicates severe pain) or does she just look uncomfortable with walking?

It is possible this is just from older age arthritis or this could be as serious as a laminitis.  Would take her temperature to be sure we are not dealing with an infection/laminitis, which would then indicate she needs an injectable antibiotic.  Otherwise I would start her with aspirin, one 325 mg human tablet per 100 pounds body weight, crushed and dissolved in a little hot water, cooled and given orally every 4 hours for pain and discomfort.  Other anti-inflammatories/pain relievers such as Tylenol, ibuprofen, etc. are not good for goats.  The aspirin will not hurt her rumen.  You can also use a human MSM over the counter medicine (again for humans - using the dosing for a human) to help with pain and discomfort - again these tablets need to be dissolved in hot water, cooled and given orally.

Hope his helps - let me know - 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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