Goats/Front Leg


Last night, our fainter wether tripped and injured his front leg. We did not see it happen, but sometimes he falls hard on his leg/shoulder when he faints. He is not putting any weight on the leg to walk, but tucks his knee under himself to provide support when getting up on three legs. There is no obvious swelling, but he does have a warmer than usual area where his leg connects to his body. He did not fuss when we were trying to check for any obvious broken bones or hoof injuries. We gave him vit b, electrolytes, and baby aspirin and will continue. What else should we do? Online suggestions include immobilizing the leg, treating with penicillin G, and adding other vitamins. Thank you so much for your time!

HI Julie,
It depends on how severe the injury- he could have twisted it and it is sore or he may have dislocated it - which if this is the case only a vet can tell you for sure. I would continue as you have and wait a couple days to see if there is an improvement. Most likely there will be -  if it gets worse  or does not improve in a few days - a vet check would be in order to see if there is damage to the joint.  I would not immobilize the leg, let him decide when to put pressure on it and not - they are the best judge of this themselves -  and  I would give the baby aspirin for another day or so - then  no more.. the swelling should naturally be reducing by then  and you do not want to mask the pain-  he needs to still feel the pain so he knows how careful to be with it.  Lessening the pain is fine in the beginning. I would also wait on any PennG treatment - this is for possible bone fractures that may get infected, I  do not suspect he has a fracture, but again - only your vet can do xrays to make sure. Take his rectal temp a few times a day - if it stays within normal range (101.5 to 103.5 ) he most likely has no infection in the system.  Keep an eye on him  and any change for the worse,  call the vet. IF the swelling increases  or he gets feverish, call the vet and if you are going right in  to see him, hold off on the aspirin so it doesn't mask  anything for the vet to see  and he may give him a corticosteroid injection (most likely dex) - if you cannot get in to see the vet and he is feverish, I'd give him the aspirin to reduce fever.  


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Specializing in New Goat Owner understanding of goat physiology, goat anatomy, goat care and herd management. *I am not a veterinarian, any advice and information should be verified by your veterinarian before administering to your goats. (! During times of severe weather in the Midwest, I may experience a delay in internet service due to the interference of the satellite reception - but will answer your questions as soon as service is restored. !) Note: Keep in mind, the goat expert is volunteering her time to help other goat owners, she also runs her farm with her own herd of 100 goats and may not be at her computer at all hours. Questions are answered as soon as she can possibly read and answer them, usually within 24 hours.


23 years experience of raising goats and herd management. Active hands on experience with goat herd and research with various Caprine University Research and Extension Centers nationwide. 15 years dedicated to helping other goat breeders/owners with goat anatomy, goat disease and goat health care issues via phone, published goat care articles and internet interaction. The information I have to offer is not only from personal experience and years of research updated often as new information is made available to me, but supported by many Veterinary Research colleges and all medications and information I have to offer on how the medications work and what dosages "I" use, is information I have acquired by discussing directly with the company's veterinarians and staff research experts.

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