Sometimes, OY VEY, are the only words that work. The last couple of weeks have been…well let’s just say…full. Yes, “full” fits. Full of ….. the good, the bad, and the ugly!!! So that I don’t overwhelm you with too many words on one post, I’m going to break these things up into two posts (the bad, and the ugly kind of go together…yes, they definitely walk hand-in-hand.) Let’s start with the feo y el malo….
About a week and half after bringing our Spanish Heritage Goat kids home, I noticed a bit of “softening” to some of their droppings. Not diarrhea, more like a softer dog stool…not alarming, but did raise my eyebrows a bit. Was this normal in goats? I went to the internet. Keep in mind, two evenings prior to this, I had fed the kids those first Douglas Fir tree branches…they ate quite a lot. Yes, an abrupt change in diet can affect them in this way…”Great!” I had my answer. I found these droppings once again the next day (Saturday)….”No worries…it will work its way through.”
Sunday morning…….WHAM!!! …… and I mean, WHAM!!!! Buckets of warm water in hand, I was bathing the backside of little, Clark … yep, we had a case of full on diarrhea, or, more properly known as, scours. I cannot tell you….more appropriately, I will not tell you the fine details of what this was like, but as a quick synopsis…there were periods of continuous oozing. Enough said!!!!
After cleaning Clark, their “locker room”, and the grounds of Candlestick Park 2, I headed for the Corid, replaced their water buckets with new water and, what I thought was a proper dosing of Corid. My goat’s breeder had told me that this was an item to keep on hand just for this type of situation…I’m glad he did!! Oh my goodness….I didn’t sleep very well that night. I thought I really made a huge mistake with the fir branches…I felt so bad for the little guy. Monday was more of the same, and after seeing a big, “squirt” while jumping into the “locker room,” I had enough…as I’m sure Clark was feeling as well. I called the vet!! He was able to come out on Thursday. Since Clark was eating and drinking normally, it wasn’t an emergency call….Okay…that put me a little at ease. Additionally to the Corid, into the water buckets went a probiotic, and electrolytes.
Each day was about keeping Clark, and the shelter/grounds clean…hoping, hoping, hoping that Montana, and Lott would not start in with the same. Thankfully, they remained solid.
Long story short, the vet came out (really nice), took fecal samples from each goat…Clark cooperated with a fresh sample 🙂 while the vet was checking him over. He was concerned that the herd felt too thin…we talked about their feed, and he pointed me to the direction of a lamb / calf starter grain. He started Clark on, Albon, for coccidiosis, and the next day, all three were on a dewormer. Thankfully, those parasites found in their stool were goat gut specific (or more appropriately, ruminant gut specific) and not transferable to chickens, dogs, or people.
Within a day, Clark started to dry up … oh my gosh…thank goodness!!! The kids love, love, love the starter grain, and are putting on weight. They are more energetic, and there is lots of cud chewing going on. A great sign that their tummies are working more efficiently now that they aren’t competing with parasites for their food.
Little Clark is behind in size and weight, and hopefully, will catch up. I’m keeping a close eye on him as Montana and Lott are growing much faster. This was quite the learning experience, and I’m feeling more confident now. Seriously, that Monday evening when I saw the “squirt” I about lost it. I was about to throw in the towel…get the little guy well, and sell off the herd. I had not anticipated scours, nor the mess it created, and my confidence as a new goat mama was cracked…not shattered, but definitely cracked!! I’m glad the little guy feels better, he’s a sweetheart, and my confidence is growing.
Thank you for visiting the farm today. I’ve missed talking with you!!
Please have a wonderful, day!!
Your friend from Oregon,