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Specific information on diseases and illnesses will be found in the Disease section of this website. For all other medical information, see the Medical pages.
If a drug can be given either SQ or IM, choose SQ. There is less opportunity to form abscesses or cause tissue or nerve damage.
Read through the directions completely before you start.
1. Wash the work area (where you will set the drug and syringe) well with soap and water.
2. Wash your hands.
3. Check the drug label to be sure it is the right drug. Check the expiration date on the vial. Do not use a drug if it is past the expiration date, or you see small pieces floating in it or it is discolored
4. Remove the lid from the top of the bottle. Wipe the rubber top with an alcohol swab or a cotton ball moistened with alcohol.
5. Check to make sure the needle is attached tightly to the syringe. Turn it clockwise (to the right) to tighten it.
6. Remove the plastic needle cap by pulling it straight off. Do not touch the needle. If the needle touches any surface, do not use it. Get a different syringe. It will have germs on it that you will inject under the skin, causing an abscess or giving an illness to your goat.
7. Pull back the plunger of the syringe to the dose you want to give. This will draw air into the syringe.
8. Place the drug vial on a flat surface, and push the needle through the rubber top. Push down on the plunger to push the air into the vial. (If you don’t do this, the fluid may not come out of the bottle when you want to draw it up.)
9. Leave the syringe in the bottle and turn the vial upside down, holding the syringe and needle in place.
10. Make sure the tip of the needle is in the drug solution. Then pull the plunger back by the flat knob. This will draw the drug into the syringe. Keep pulling on the knob until the drug reaches the amount of drug you want to give.
11. Check for air bubbles in the syringe. To remove air bubbles from the syringe:
Hold the syringe with the needle pointing straight up (still in the vial).
Gently tap the barrel of the syringe so air bubbles float to the top. Then slowly push the plunger until the air bubble is gone.
the needle in the bottle, read the mark on the syringe, at the rounded end of
the black rubber.
If the dose is not right, move the plunger up or down until it is correct.
Now take the bottle off the needle and put the cover back on the needle. Never walk with an uncapped needle in your hand..
There are two
types of shots, IM (intramuscular or in the muscle) and SQ
(subcutaneous below the skin). Make sure that you give the shot
the way the medicine bottle says to
give it. If it specifies to only give it IM or SQ then do it that way. If it says that it can be given
either SQ or IM, then give it SQ. There is
less chance of abscesses or muscle or nerve damage with SQ injections.
Make sure your goat is restrained completely before you start. He will jump when you put the needle in and will fight you until you get it out.It is a good idea to have help, but if you don't, then tie the goat's head to a fence near a wall, and then push his/her body firmly against the wall with your body, or put your legs on both sides of the animal and hold her that way. You could also put the goat in the milking stanchion to give a shot.
IM shots are normally given into the large muscle of the thigh, but be careful to enter from the side of the goat and not the rear in order to avoid hitting the sciatic nerve. Alternate sites are the neck and flank. The following picture shows a shot in the side of the neck.
You can buy syringe disposal boxes from most medical clinics or hospitals. Do not put bare needles in the garbage. Make sure they are in a container that will protect garbage workers from injury. Better yet, ask your vet where to dispose of them.
1. Select a site, either in the armpit area behind the front legs or loose skin over the shoulder.
2. Swab it with rubbing alcohol.
3. Remove the needle cap from the syringe.
4. Place your fingers of your left hand on either side of the site and pinch up the skin.
5. Holding the syringe in your right hand like a dart, quickly pierce the skin and push the needle into the space between the pinched up skin.
6. Pull back on the plunger to make sure you are not in a vein. If you are in a vein, blood will come into the syringe. If this happens, choose another site and repeat the process until you are not in a vein.
7. Push on the plunger to inject the drug.
8. Remove the syringe from the goat. Put the cap on the syringe. Dispose of the syringe in a box set aside for this purpose. You can buy syringe disposal boxes from most medical clinics or hospitals.
Injections made easy http://www.tennesseemeatgoats.com/articles2/injections.html
Video: how to give the shot IM or SQ in the area immediately behind the front leg http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ijd5ZPoXPC4
To take the pulse, make sure goat is resting quietly. Put your index and middle fingers on the artery just below and slightly to the inside of the edge of the jaw, 2/3 of the way back from the muzzle. Count the number of beats in 15 seconds and multiply by 4 to get the rate. (Battaglia)
70-90 beats per minute in a resting adult goat.
(May be double that rate in active, young kids)
Fetal heart rates may be up to 180 beats per minute (Smith, 10)
To count respirations, watch the side of the goat go up and
One rise and fall is one
Count it when the goat is resting quietly.
Count the number of respirations for 15 seconds and multiply by 4 to get the rate per minute. (Batagglia).
Normal respiration rate:
10-30 breaths per minute (adults)
20-40 breaths per minute (kids) (Smith, 248)
Normal goat temperature: 101.5 -104 degrees Fahrenheit (Smith, 10)
If a goat has been running, or if the weather is hot and humid, then the body temperature may be higher than normal, even if the animal is well. Put the goat in a nice cool place to rest before taking the temperature.
Tatooing imprints a set of numbers and letters into the ears (or tail webs) of a goat, providing permanent identification. Tattooing should be done in the ears for all breeds except LaManchas, which are tattooed in the tail webs since their ears are so small.
To read the tattoo in a dark-eared animal, hold a lighted flashlight against the outside of the ear.
There will be two separate sets of tattoos.
1) The herd ID goes into the right ear (or right tail web.) If you have registered animals, ADGA will assign you a herd identification number. You must use this number when you tattoo. If your animals are not registered, then you can use whatever you like. Many people use their own initials or the initials from the name of their farm..
2) The individual animal ID goes in the left ear, or left tail web. This ID has two parts, a letter signifying the year*, and a number signifying the birth order for your farm for that year. If you tattoo your first goats in 2011, you could start with the letter A, and since the goat you are tattooing is the first one born that year, it’s tattoo would say “A1.” The next goat born would be A2. Some people like to use the same year designation as the official registry is using and you can find that by going to their website: www.adga.org
(* Note: DO NOT use the letters G,I,O, Q or U because they are hard to tell apart from other letters.)
Tattoo ink (Green ink is best for dark colored goats)
Tattoo pliers (two sets) (Make sure rubber is still spongy. If not, get new sponges for them.)
Tattoo letters and numbers
Rubbing alcohol pads
Tub of rubbing alcohol or disinfectant, large enough to dip the tongs in.
You should have two sets tattoo pliers, one for each ear. Put the desired tattoo letters and numbers for each ear into the correct tattoo pliers. Punch them on a piece of test paper to make sure they are correct before you use them on the animal.
Make sure the goat is restrained. It is good to have a helper.
Clean the ears with rubbing alcohol. If there is a lot of hair, clip it before you clean it. (If you are tattooing a LaMancha, use its tail region instead of its ears, as its ears are too small to take the tattoo.)
Apply tattoo ink to an area on a flat part of the ear (or tail) that doesn’t have any large freckles or other obstructions to reading the tattoo. Make sure it is between any cartilages and away from blood vessels. Make sure you cover the entire area with ink.
Put the tongs on the inked area so that the bottom of the letters and numbers are facing the bottom of the ear (or the outside edge of the tail for a LaMancha.)
Carefully squeeze the tongs firmly. When you release the tongs, make sure you lift them out straight. If you drag them, you will not get clear imprints.
Using the toothbrush, rub more ink into the tattoo for about 15 seconds, getting it well down into the tattoo grooves.
Rub in baking soda.
Release the goat.
Do not disturb the area until the healing process is complete, which may be from five to twenty-one days.
Note: Dip the tongs in alcohol or disinfectant before you do the next goat so you don’t spread infections.
How To Tattoo A Goat (American Dairy Goat Associationwebsite) http://www.adga.org/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=104:tattoo-policy&catid=909:catadgagoats&Itemid=131
Goats have three groups of teeth:
The teeth usually erupt at about the times shown below.
This picture of the dental pad is from that site:
Many older does have sore teeth. Feel along the outside of the cheek for tenderness. If the doe flinches, she may have sharp or broken edges on her molars, or tooth decay. Pain may keep her from eating.
Treatment (called “floating the teeth")
This is a dental float for a pony.
You can buy it from your vet, or vet supply catalog. This is a large, rasp-like bar that can be used to rub off high, uneven points on the teeth. To get the doe to open her mouth, place your thumb between her jaws and pry open. (Do not do this by her molars or you will get bitten.)
Press the float on the top back teeth and rub back and forth
3-4 times. Move to the other side of the
mouth and do the same. Now turn the float over and do the bottom back
teeth on both sides. Observe the animal for a couple days to see
whether she eats better. If not, repeat the procedure.
Below you will see a photo summary from http://cru.cahe.wsu.edu/CEPublications/eb1998/eb1998.pdf
Please go to the site and read the article in full. It is loaded with clear pictures.
Tube feeding neonatal small ruminants (Pictures and directions) http://cru.cahe.wsu.edu/CEPublications/eb1998/eb1998.pdf
Tube Feeding a weak kid http://hoeggergoatsupply.com/info/tube_feed.shtml Written directions with diagram
How to Tube Feed A Goat Kid http://www.goatworld.com/articles/kidding/tubefeedingrw.shtml Written directions.
The following information is summarized from Dr. Scott Haskell's speech to the Wisconsin Dairy Goat Association, November 12, 2005, “Reproduction and Breeding of Dairy Goats” and from Haskell, Small Ruminant Clinical Diagnosis and Therapy starting at p.238.
Ultrasounds are the best tools for pregnancy diagnosis. Dr. Haskell recommends buying a B mode "real time" ultrasound machine ($2000-3000), and says that you should NOT buy an A mode Doppler- type ultrasound. You will also need two probes ($2000-2500 each) (also called transducers), one 7.5 MHz and one 5 MHz. You will be using the 7.5 MHz most of the time. Buy the best transducers you can afford. There are two types of transducers. Linear array v. sector scanning. The linear array probes are less expensive and show a rectangular wide angle area. (most vet clinics have this type.) This type can detect pregnancy from 25 to 100 days gestation. The sector scanning transducer is more expensive and shows a wedge shaped area. It is more accurate and improves fetal examination. It is commonly used for abdominal scanning.
You can do one ultrasound every 5 minutes at the beginning, and work up to several hundred per hour after you are experienced. Dense tissues such as bones produce high intensity images and appear white. Fluids produce low intensity images and appear black. Variations of shades of black or white are dependent on the thickness of the tissues examined.
Two methods of doing ultrasounds: rectal and abdominal
The goat should be restrained and may be standing or laying on her backbone. Use at least 60 cc of ultrasound gel and 6 cc (ml). of Lidocaine premix (numbing agent). Attach the probe to a piece of plastic PVC pipe to extend the length. The rectal exams work well to determine if there is a problem with the ovaries and are good for pregnancy diagnosis, but should not be done after 35 weeks of pregnancy. Some does may need to be sedated for the rectal ultrasound. You should withhold food for 12 hours before the exam to improve the ability to scan the genital organs.
What you can see rectally (using 7.5 and 5 MHz transducers):
Heartbeat detected by day 23-25 with the 7.5 MHz probe
Fetal count detected by day 25 with the 7.5 MHz probe (Use a sector-scanning transducer to improve accuracy of counting fetuses. (Sex them by looking for a penis or lack of it.)
Embryo detected at day 25 with the 5 MHz probe.
Embryonic vessels detected at day 16-17 with the 7.5 MHz probe
Put the probe on the right side of the goat’s body to avoid the rumen, which is on the left side. Shave off the hair above the mammary glands on that right side and wash the area. Put water or alcohol on the skin so the probe is making good contact with the skin. Put the probe on that spot and aim it back toward the uterus (toward the left pelvis.) You can tell how many babies there are, what sex they are and whether they are alive. Use abdominal ultrasounding after day 35. 24 hour fast prior to test.
What you can see abdominally (using a 5 MHz linear-array or sector-scanning transducer. Can use 3 MHz on small stock):
Prior to day 40, see only fluid and embryo, but no caruncles (round or oval thickenings on the maternal side of the placenta, which attach to the cotyledons or fetal side of the placenta)
After day 40, caruncles are visualized with the 5 MHz probe.
Days 45-60 are the absolute ideal time to ultrasound for pregnancy.
After day 110, visualization becomes more difficult. Fluid and fetal position shifts toward the mother’s head.
Fetal counts done at 60 days of gestation
Placentomes (raised buttons where the maternal side and fetal side of placenta join together) seen at 35-40 days. They become c-shaped between 40-50 days.
Fetal numbers are best assessed between 40 and 70 days gestation.
Caruncles, fluid levels and fetuses need to be evaluated to make a proper diagnosis.
In abortions you will see the placentomes, but they are found close together and there isn’t the usual amount of fluid volume.
In Hydrometrias, (also called false pregnancy or pseudo pregnancy), which are common at beginning and end of breeding seasons, you will see large saculated organ, full of fluid with white specks in it, with no fetuses and no placentomes present. The thin uterine walls will undulate when probed. (More of them occur when using out of season breeding and when reproductive drugs are used to induce breeding.)
Means of measuring fetal age:
-crown of head to end of rump length
-biparietal diameter (diameter across skull, side to side)
-carunclular size and chest diameter.
In Alpines and Saanens, fetal length correlates closely with age:
-40 mm at 45 days
-100 mm at 60 days
-240 mm at 90 days (See Smith at 415)
Biparietal diameter approximately correlates with age. At 40-100 days gestation, the correlation is closest.
Reproductive Technologies http://www.luresext.edu/goats/training/advrepro.html
Small ruminant clinical diagnosis and therapy http://www.rmncsba.org/SMALLRUMINANT.pdf Page # 238 of original document or website screen 244)
Give subcutaneously (SQ) high on the goat’s neck, and as close to the head as you can get, pinch up the loose skin, using your thumb and index finger. Carefully put the needle in so that it is between the two sides of the pinched up area. Inject the vaccine.
adult buck……..………5 cc. once a year
breeding doe………… 5 cc. once a year (4-6 weeks before kidding so some immunity is passed to the kids) (or) twice a year (4-6 weeks before breeding and 4-6 weeks before kidding)
kids……………………2 cc. *
*If the mother was vaccinated before kidding, vaccinate kids at 8 weeks of age, then again at 12 weeks
If mother was not vaccinated before kidding and you experience problems, vaccinate kids at 2 weeks of age, and again at 6 weeks. (Coffey, G, 10)
You cannot send a goat for slaughter until 21 days after you vaccinate with CD&T.
Do not give a CD&T booster within the last three weeks of pregnancy. Give it before the goat is 4 months and one week pregnant. (Dawson)
Some vets recommend using Ultrabad 7 instead of C, D &T.
Ultrabec 7 (clostridial) Prevention of blackleg, (CI, chauvoel), malignant edema (CI, septicum), black disease (CI. novyl), and Clostridium sordel and Clostridium perfringens types C and D enterotoxemia
5 cc. subcutaneously, followed by a second dose 4–6 weeks later.
Annual revaccination with a single dose is recommended.
For prevention of White Muscle Disease (inadequate selenium)
1 cc. of BoSe intramuscularly for every 40 pounds of body weight twice a year. The best time for bred does to receive BoSe is about one month before they kid and then 5 months after they kid. Babies should have their first injection at six weeks of age (1/2 cc), unless they need it sooner to correct a problem.
Note: Dr. Van Saun recommends adding selenium to the ration instead of giving BoSe shots, because much of the BoSe is excreted and gone within 24 hrs.
If you feed selenium in your ration, the amount stays steady in their blood all the time. (See Nutrition section under "Minerals" for amounts to feed).
Kids: 2 ml. IM at 2 months and repeat in two weeks at 2.5 months old.
Adults: 1.5 cc. IM 4 weeks before freshening
Kids: Booster at 2 months of age
For a table of vaccinations (page 73) and an overview of vaccinations for meat goats (page 72) see http://luresext.edu/goats/library/field/dawson09.pdf
Vaccinations for sheep and goats http://www.sheepandgoat.com/articles/flockvaccinations.html
Vaccines Used In The Sheep and Goat Industry: http://www.sheepandgoat.com/articles/vaccinestable.html
Randall J. DVM. CLA in Goats. http://www.colorado-serum.com/vets/vol_2/vol2_10.htm accessed 4-2-11
Wattles are globules or pendants of skin that hang from the sides of the goat’s neck.
They are generally about 2” long.
They are found on both sexes and on all breeds.
They are non functional and can be left on the goat or removed as the owner wishes.
Sometimes kids will suck on them, causing an irritation and possible infection.
Remove them when they are large enough to be easily managed.
1. Restrain the animal.
2. Thoroughly disinfect the skin around the base of the wattle, where it is attached to the goat.
3. Disinfect the scissors, and while holding the wattle outward from the animal, snip it free where it joins the goat.
This is the thinnest point of the wattle. If it is clipped free at its thinnest point, usually there isn’t any bleeding.
4. Disinfect the removal site with an antiseptic.
(Batagglia, p. 443)
Put the measuring tape around the body, just behind the front legs. Pull snugly.
Now find that measurement on the chart below to find the weight.
(Do not use this table for meat goats or pygmies This is for dairy goats only.)
How to figure it:
Measure the length of the body from the point of the shoulder to the point of the rump._____”
Measure around the body right behind the front leg. Pull tape snug.
Multiply heart girth times heart girth ______ x ______=______
Take that number and multiply by body length. _____ x ______
Take that number and divide by 300. _______That gives you the weight in pounds
1) 39 x39 =
2) 1,521 x 33 = 50.193
3) 50.193 divided by 300=167 pounds
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