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All information provided in these articles is based either on personal experience or information provided by others whose treatments and practices have been discussed fully with a vet for accuracy and effectiveness before passing them on to readers.
In all cases, it is your responsibility to obtain veterinary services and advice before using any of the information provided in these articles. We are not veterinarians. Neither nor any of the contributors to this website will be held responsible for the use of any information contained herein.
PLEASE keep in mind, just because there is a DVM after the name does not mean they have the proper answers for goat owners 'Caveat emptor'- You need to find a responsible GOAT Vet


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Goat Medications And Supplies Print E-mail
Written by Administrator-GL   
Sunday, 03 June 2007
Article Index
Goat Medications And Supplies
Page 2

 Another Great Resource for the Goat Medicines

to Have on hand



The items mentioned below are the ones I, personally, am most comfortable keeping on hand to meet a management crisis head-on. I have a favorite saying that goes, "It's great to know what needs to be done, but that doesn't help much if I don't have the tools to work with!"  Having myself been caught unprepared a time or two, and losing a favorite animal as a result, I knew I never wanted that to happen again. So today I always keep these items available, and as a result I'm virtually never caught at 11 PM on a Sunday night with nothing to handle an emergency.


  Important information about which I feel goat owners should be aware:



1) To maintain efficacy, ALL meds should be refrigerated at ALL times, excepting while in use.


2) There is an important difference between Toxoids and Antitoxins :


Toxoids  do provide long-term immunity against pathogens.  But it takes 2-3 weeks after a toxoid is administered for the body to develop antibodies that will protect it against those pathogens.


Antitoxins start to work immediately, wiping out pathogens the minute they are injected into the body.  But they do not provide long-term immunity to the host, and will disappear from the system entirely within 10-14 days after they were given.


No vaccinations (toxoids, bacterins) that are given before 2 months of age will provide immunity in the kids that get them . To give a neonate a toxoid at birth to protect it against a particular disease (usually enterotoxemia and/or tetanus), which many people want to do, is a waste of time, as it will NOT protect the kid if it's exposed to that disease! It takes the neonate’s body 2 months to mature sufficiently to start making its own antibodies against the weakened toxins in a ’vaccine’, so Before 2 months of age, antitoxins are the only things that will save the kid in a crisis.


3) Dexamethasone Injectable (Rx):  Because it's a corticosteroid, this very inexpensive painkiller and anti-inflammatory med actually causes the patient to feel euphoric (very happy). It's commonly provided by veterinarians as an adjunct (supportive therapy) to whatever curative treatment is used on the goat.  However you, the owner, should be aware that dexamethasone, as well as all other corticosteroids, will disconnect the animal's own immune system while in its body, thus making the patient unable to help itself to get well!   In fact, if the cause of the goat's illness is of viral origin, the use of dexamethasone, leaving its immune system non-functional, could actually CAUSE ITS DEATH.   Banamine (see below), while more costly for the veterinarian to provide to you, is NOT a steroid  and will do exactly the same job of providing adjunct support to the patient, WITHOUT disconnecting its immune system in the effort!


There is neither any logic nor any reason whatsoever to support using both dexamethasone and Banamine together, at the same time, in the same patient .

4) Virtually ALL injections can and should be given to goats SQ, despite what the label might suggest, or the veterinarian, or another individual.  I do not give ANY oral antibiotics to goats , excepting for sulfa drugs and Neomycin Sulfate.  Goats depend upon the good bacteria in the rumen for digestion of their food. Oral antibiotics (other than Neomycin Sulfate and sulfa drugs) will kill the good bacteria in the rumen as well as the bad, causing serious scouring. You need to know this especially if your goats are being treated by a dog/cat veterinarian, since often dog/cat vets, because they do not specialize in ruminants, are simply not aware of this danger. (BTW: Sulfas are not true antibiotics, but are used similarly.)


5) Just as is done in human medicine, there is a propensity for veterinarians to use the newest, trendiest, most expensive medications available to date when treating your goats.  They are highly motivated to do so by the salesmen representing the manufacturers of the new products, just as human doctors are. Keep in mind that while they are the NEWEST meds, it does NOT automatically make them the BEST meds (although it DOES make them the most costly ones) , and quite often it is the owner that finds out the hard way that there are undesirable side effects to them.  It isn't unheard of for a newest, trendiest, most expensive med provided in such a manner to be suddenly recalled (or to fall out of favor) due to those serious side effects being discovered AFTER having been made available to the public.  And the fact is, there are MANY tried-and-true meds available for you to use that are often non-prescription (so that you can obtain them without the vet's help), and that have been available for many years, that in the majority of situations will do an equally successful job for your animal.


6) Very few meds have been cleared for use on goats. This is simply because goats are considered a minor economic species, and as a result almost no money is available to do the research needed to get government approval. This is not an indication that these meds would be harmful to your goat.  In fact, just about every med that we use on livestock is either identical to a med used on humans, or is a close counterpart to it. (Well, maybe a CD/T shot would be an exception, but if humans could get entero, we’d be using that as well!)  That having been said, as do most goat owners (with the exception of those selling meat or milk products for public consumption, who cannot legally do so), if the med is approved for sheep, swine, cows or horses, and I know it is the proper strength of the proper med for my purposes, I do not hesitate to use it on my goats.


7) There are times when it's prudent to use meds preventatively, as it's far easier to avoid some things than to cure them!  This should seem obvious enough, but I am continually amazed to find people actually waiting for signs of ketosis (a given if the pregnant doe starts missing a few meals) or enterotoxemia (also a given, if the unprotected kid’s gut is stopped or slowed down for a couple of days by some other problem, like bloat or FKS) to appear before taking any preventative action!  The means used to prevent these things are not harmful to your goat. Trying to repair the damage after it happens may be too little too late, and can cost your goat its life. This is a self-sufficiency issue, in which ‘time is of the essence’, Veterinary consultation is not needed, and materials are non-prescription but must be already available for your use when you need them.


Now, on with the show! 

Last Updated ( Friday, 20 June 2008 )
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