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Goats/female nubian not acting right


QUESTION: We have a 1 year old female, was down on all fours this morn and would not eat her grain (Dumour goat feed).Got her up and took temp, which was 103.6. She ate last night, and since they did not get out to forage yesterday due to rain, I gave them a good bit of alfalfa hay yesterday evening and it is mostly gone this morning. I haven't seen any loose feces, little poop balls like normal is what I've seen. She is not grinding her teeth which she did when she had pnuemonia when a baby. I have felt around on her belly and sides, and she doesn't seem to be in discomfort, although she was quivering a little when I took her temp. Our vet admits he doesn't know a whole lot about goats, recommends we connect with someone who owns goats and knows more from sheer experience. We also have a year old wether, and he is going crazy that his sister isn't herself. Help!

ANSWER: Hi Rhonda

Is she acting at all blind or drunk?
Is she able to stand at all on her own, get up and down by herself? What is the color of her inner eyelid membrane? Look here to see  how to look at compare to the color chart-

If she is weak with good rectal temp - IS eating and not acting blind or drunk I suspect she may have weakness due to heavy wormload - here is  my article on how to properly deworm and what dewormers to use and why.

If she IS acting blind disoriented or drunk then she may have gotten some moldy feed  - please read this
and you tell me if this sounds like what your goat is doing - since I cannot observe myself

Get back to me if you need to about this - I suspect she may be weakened like I said due to wormload - If she has not been dewormed properly  or with an effective dewormer  this may be the case - wormload does not always  mean they will scour.

---------- FOLLOW-UP ----------

QUESTION: No, not acting blind or drunk, able to get up on her own. I have been walking her and massaging her belly and sides, tried to get some mineral oil down, very little however, in case it was bloat, although her abdomen is not distended onleft side. Her fever has risen from 103.6 to 104.6 in last 3 hours. They have just started grazing on new area, but we have limited it to just 2 hours a day til they get used to it. We have checked to make sure nothing toxic available in the new area, and the wether we have shows no symptoms, so we don't think it could be that. It could be worms, but she is not eating and would it cause the fever? Also, should I get a fecal sample before I deworm her, or would the subcutaneous meds you recommend be okay to use? Also, I can't determine her exact weight as hubby is not home and I can't lift her alone to weigh her. I just checked her eyelids and they are nice and pink.

Hi Rhonda

Please be very careful with the oil.. it is SO easy to  have it go down the wrong way and get into the lungs and then you DO have a problem.. even my vet hates using it.. I never use oil -  if she were bloated  you  would know it.. Look at this article with photos -

wormload does not cause fever - although severe anemia can and will cause SUB-normal temps  below 100 at times which is a dangerous situation-
OK  when you first wrote her temp was normal, now it is elevated to low fever  (anything over 104 I consider fever - 103.5ish is normal)

Do you have  tylan200 on hand? (I use this antibiotic for upper respiratory)

Have you checked the grain for any mold?
They do not always grind teeth with pneumonia

pink eyelid membrane is good,  so she is not anemic-

I think I would give her some baking soda orally (I use a tsp and wet the baking soda with water to make a paste and directly into the mouth like you would a child, you will loose most of it so  repeat this.. and they make funny noises after they eat it.. they do not like it .. and the vocal noises they make if you have not heard it before can be worry some but it is fine)  to help ease the pH of the gut.. sometimes this is all that is needed -  if you have Tylan200 on hand  I  would  consider giving her this for  possible  early pneumonia - it stings like the devil so  be aware of this..  Tyaln200 (generic is tylosin200) is NOT the same as LA200  it can be found at feed stores and  IMHO is the best over the counter antibiotic for  pneumonia and usually works very quickly - I use 1cc/25lbs goat weight injected SQ in the back leg - I use this twice a day for a minimum of 5 days  


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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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