Lethargic friend, not eating, what's wrong?

Discussion in 'Goats' started by doigle, Dec 4, 2006.

  1. doigle

    doigle Well-Known Member

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    We have two pet goats (Alpines), the wether is about 3 years old. Had the vet out here on Saturday. Temp is normal, they were wormed in the fall, he's pooping normal, but very lethargic and no appetite. He IS overweight. Not bloated. The vet wasn't sure what the problem was. Not our usual vet as he was out that day. He also told me not to give him baking soda free choice. I've always heard that's fairly standard goat practice. They have alfalfa hay, and the pellets from Tractor Supply. The only thing he seems interested in eating is candy corn out of my hand. I'm concerned about urinary tract problems. I haven't seen him pee, but that doesn't mean he isn't because I'm not out there all the time. Any ideas, thoughts on what the problem could be? Thanks for your help.
     
  2. fishhead

    fishhead Well-Known Member Supporter

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    Try to catch him laying down resting or chewing his cud. Then when he stands up he's likely to pee.

    I think you'll find that offering free choice baking soda is pretty well accepted by many goat owners.

    Do they have access to loose goat minerals?

    What's his temp?
     

  3. doigle

    doigle Well-Known Member

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    I don't have a thermometer, but his temp was normal on Saturday. I guess I better get a thermometer, but unsure of myself using it. I'm not real squeemish or anything, just don't want to hurt the goat or have him take off with it stuck in there. I don't have a milking stand or stanchions to secure him. We're not very skilled at doctoring, but are willing to try. I rely on vet for injections too. Not very confident in my skills.
    <p>As for minerals they have a sheep'goat mineral block from tractor supply. They don't have steady access, but I scrape some off and offer it everyday in a cup hanging on the wall. Usually they don't want it. That was another thing that confused me with this vet. He said they don't need that and get rid of it. I just paid like $12 for it so not dumping it! He said to get a 2/1 mineral lick from Farm & Fleet. My daughter's out there with them right now, trying to catch him peeing. Anyone else have any input on any of this?
    <p>Thanks for your thoughts Fishhead, I will keep baking soda available no matter what he says.
     
  4. fishhead

    fishhead Well-Known Member Supporter

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    Just lubricate the thermometer first. I use spit since both hands are already busy. Insert it slowly and twist it a little as you insert it. Even if the goat gets away the thermometer should just fall out by itself.

    Sheep minerals don't have enough copper for goats so I would find some actual loose goat minerals next time. They don't always eat it but when they need it the mineral should be available.

    Good nutrition (including minerals) is essential to avoid problems down the road.

    I think I would be looking for another vet. If possible find one that is knowledgeable about goats or at least willing to learn.
     
  5. susanne

    susanne Nubian dairy goat breeder

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    your vet is right. you don't need the sheep mineral block at all. give it away to somebody with sheep. it is very important for your wether
    to get the proper minerals. and he needs is 24/7/365 as much he wants it and when he wants it.
    fresh water all the time and no grain at all. please quit the corn as this is contributing to his weight problem. he really does not need it at all.
    good quality grass hay is plenty for him.
    take the time and stay at his pen until you see him pee.
    get some probios from your fed store and vit-b complex. this will help him to deal with the stress and curbs his appetite.
    good luck
    susanne
     
  6. doigle

    doigle Well-Known Member

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    Okay, stayed out with him until I saw him pee. Not a huge amount, but enough to make a tunnel in the snow anyway. Neither one of them is eating their hay or goat chow anymore. All they want is bark and willow sticks. I'm going to see if I can get Probios at TS this afternoon, waiting for my husband to get home for the car right now. B complex for people or ?
     
  7. susanne

    susanne Nubian dairy goat breeder

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    you get b-complex at TSC too. it is an injectable. i know you don't like to do it but it is very easy. you pull the skin behind the elbow and stick the needle in the tent that is forming. give 5 cc once a day. if you start learning to give injection it will save you a lot of money and eventually save the life of your animals.