Milk fever

Discussion in 'Goats' started by motdaugrnds, Jan 13, 2005.

  1. motdaugrnds

    motdaugrnds II Corinthians 5:7 Supporter

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    Last spring of 2004 I lost one of my most productive does (Lady Alginon) after she gave birth to 4 kids and took milk fever. (I had no idea what was wrong with her until it was too late to save her.)

    This year I have her daughter (another over 10-lb daily) who just gave birth to 2 kids and appears wobbly. (I never saw the afterbirth, thinking she might have eaten it.) I cleaned her and watched her closely. She did not seem hungry for about 24 hours; later did seem hungry, yet ate very little. She stayed in an area where other goats were not (a little 8' x 12' room adjacent to main part of barn where I saw her accidentally step on the side of one of her babies and it screamed. A couple days thereafter, it died.) She would stand most of the time and encouraging her babies to eat, washing them, etc. When she laid down I noticed she had difficulty rising.

    I did not want to take a chance on losing Midnight as I did her dam; so, I purchased some "Cal-Dex" from vet store, giving her 50cc orally and 50cc under skin (10cc each of 5 places). I gave her 3cc under skin of Nexcel, a big glob of CMPK and a large glob of Probios Paste. I put "Merricks Electrolyte" in her drinking water. That was 3 days ago.

    Next day I only gave her the Probios Paste and Cal-Dex (again as stated above). When she was interested in eating, I only gave her about 8 oz of her favorite grain and, of course, high quality baled hay.

    Today I hesitate to give her all that Cal-Dex again; so am posting here in hope of some guidance regarding this. (She seems less wobbly this morning and her appetite has improved.) She has no fever and no mastitus. (I am relieving the pressure of one side only, permitting her to dry up some.)

    Any idea or suggestions would be appreciated. Thank you all.
     
  2. bumpus

    bumpus Well-Known Member

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  3. Vicki McGaugh TX Nubians

    Vicki McGaugh TX Nubians Well-Known Member

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    I would continue the calcium supplementation until she is 100%. When reading Sue's article, the one on Wallmart meds she tells you what calicum amount to aim for in the purchases of other calcium, so you could either use the CMPK or the Cal/Mag by going with those numbers.

    I cringe with the number of does lost last year by club members, by the numbers of abortions preformed in the name of ketosis...I wish everyone would read and heed Sue Rieth's hypocalcemia information. It flies in the face of everything taught in the past, today on Nubian talk a gal who has had goats for a little less than me was giving information about limiting alfalfa to does heavy bred....it just makes me crazy! Vicki
     
  4. motdaugrnds

    motdaugrnds II Corinthians 5:7 Supporter

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    Thank you Vicki, I am continuing the cal-dex and the probios and electrolytes. She does seem to be less wobbly and a little more active.
     
  5. Debi

    Debi Active Member

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    Vicki, why do vets and others insist on "no alfalfa" during late pregnancy? I've read they develop milk fever because the alfalfa prevents them from drawing calcium stores from their bones. I'm just wondering because I don't understand it. Seems like a fine line between hypocalcemia and milk fever. Sue's article saved my doe last year when the vet said she wouldn't make it so I'm a believer. And she didn't get alfalfa during her pregnancy, only medicated pellets. They all are getting alfalfa this year tho! I don't get it.

    Debi
    Kaufman TX
     
  6. Vicki McGaugh TX Nubians

    Vicki McGaugh TX Nubians Well-Known Member

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    The argument does in fact make sense...you limit the dietary calcium in the diet so she uses the stores of calcium in her blood and bones. And since milkfever is caused by excesses of calcium in the blood.....BUT WAIT...is milk fever after kidding really caused by excess calcium in the blood? What happens if your other minerals in your does diet are ascew even a tiny bit and there isn't this big bank of reserved calcium in your does blood and bones? And that's the flaw in their thinking. You add this to the notion that goats are sheep, that your goat can live off any hay and cheap grain, there is no copper defficiency in Texas, poor worming advice, and then folks wonder why these goats are so hard to keep alive :) Vicki
     
  7. motdaugrnds

    motdaugrnds II Corinthians 5:7 Supporter

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    Update on Midnight:

    She is less wobbly this morning and more active with better appetite. She is caring for the one kid real well; yet, will not let it nurse one side of her udder. (I tested that side and there is nothing wrong with the milk. I do not milk this side but do relieve the pressure when it is tight.)

    The kid keeps the other side pretty well drained and always seems hungry; however, it's belly appears to be full. (I have, also, seen this kid nibble at grain and hay.) It is romping around with the other newborn and, as usual, trying to run sideways. (What a delight to watch. These kids don't seem to understand how their legs function. Just little pencils with long legs they don't know what to do with.)

    I am continuing the regimen (Cal-Dextros and Probios with Electrolytes in drinking water) and not over a cup of her favorite grain daily. (May cut this out entirely.) Put a coat on her and baby a couple of days and may do it again at night now that it is getting colder.
     
  8. Tricia

    Tricia Member

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    I'm glad to hear your goat is better. Where can I find Sue's article? I think it would be real helpful to have in my goat notebook.
     
  9. motdaugrnds

    motdaugrnds II Corinthians 5:7 Supporter

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    I was unable to find Sue's article. I wanted it too.