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We had a kid (born April) who was rejected by its mother, and though we saved it, it was at the bottom of the pecking order and regularly kicked around. To prep for becoming a pet, we vaccinated and banded him. I don't know how much better things became for him when we removed his sibling males (intact) and left him with the three does, one his dam who never tolerated him and butted him around, particularly during feeding time. I imagine he was lonely. (He was gored pretty badly once - watching and worrying over him all the time was a stressor for us!).

We kept him separate as much as we could and fed him in the milk shed during milking times where we could supervise and knew that he was getting at least one good meal, but suffice to say, he had a real tough beginning. He always seemed round in the middle to me though, but never complained.

A week ago Saturday, we gave him away to a dog trainer. She owns umpteen Shelties and teaches agility. All of her dogs are well behaved. She has horses also, so all round, it was an improved situation for him, despite the fact that he's the only goat.

We paid a visit yesterday. (Our dog takes lessons there). The kid is EXTREMELY happy. The shelties have all accepted him as, well - an ugly sheltie I suppose, but the goat and the dogs all bound around the yard playing. It's a hoot. He either thinks he's a dog or has just left the whole goat notion behind. Can't blame him...either way, he's way better and far more relaxed. Adorable.

What I did notice is that his middle is slimmer. He's fed all the browse he wants and quality alfalfa, - about the same as he got at our place. I'm just wondering if the bloated mid-section was stress related, given he was always on guard.
 

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True bloat is a condition of altered rumen environment allowing certain rumen microbes to overgrow and produce excess gasses that can cause death and is characterized by extreme distention and pain. Alternately, there is a wide range of acceptable/normal belly size sizes which can depend on many, many things. Stress alters feeding habits, yes, so it can cause empty or large filled rumens within normal ranges AND it can cause bloat when altered feed habits cause drastic variability in the rumen. Your feeding setup and herd dynamics could mean he spent most of his time gorging on lower quality hay in an attempt to fill up with enough of the leftovers to stay a good weight. Or, behavior could call for him to stuff his face at every opportunity to prevent him from missing out. Your hay qualities could be different. If he has pasture, it takes more time and effort to consume but usually takes less volume to fill them due to the moisture content (this usually means they spend more time grazing, too). Perhaps he's mostly dry lotted and fed a ration of hay, pellets, grain etc.

I'd first consider how feeding has changed (and even if it doesn't seem to have changed on your end, consider that as animals grow their feeding habits change).
 
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