Sunday, March 17, 2013

The Patient

Today is a scary one. This little guy has recently (and suddenly) fell ill. He has an infection of his navel. I do not know how or why it happened. When the kids were born they were all brought inside, towel dried, and their navels dipped in iodine to prevent this very thing. Two kids are in the pink of health and this guy is not. Son as he started to act slower and less playful than the other kids I checked him over and discovered a sore belly button. It looked like where the cord met the body it was infected, pussy and swelling. I called my goat expert, wrapped him in a towel, and was driven by my good friend Tom to Common Sense Farm where Yeshiva went over symptoms and treatment. We decided to put him on a regime of antibiotics for the infection, clean and irrigate the pussy stub of a navel cord, keep him warm and clean, pray, and watch for signs of white muscle disease or floppy kid syndrome. If anyone has experience with such infections, please share your own advice or ideas. I'm worried I'll lose him. I have big plans for little Earl.


Blogger Brenda said...

The antibiotics should take care of the infection. But, you also need to give some probitoics to keep his rumen/gut working correctly. If the antibiotics shut down the natural bacteria in his gut ... then he is in big trouble. You can give some yogurt (with live cultures), or keifer, or ProBios or any other commercial probiotic.

A little Cayanne will help perk him up too. It's full of B vitamins. I use a Cayanne tincture, but a very small pinch in water or apple cider vinegar would be good. You draw it up into a syringe(no needle) and give it orally.

March 17, 2013 at 3:55 PM  
Blogger Roberta @ Inspired Creating said...

I agree ... If it's just an infected button, the antibiotics should do the trick. Agree on the probiotics as well since the antibiotics may upset his tummy. He should be fine Momma, don't worry to much. Your doing a great job.

March 17, 2013 at 4:14 PM  
Blogger Jenna Woginrich said...

People on Facebook suggest Bose for WM and B12, do you think that is overkill with the Pro Pen?

March 17, 2013 at 4:17 PM  
Blogger Holly said...

Poor little guy!

March 17, 2013 at 4:43 PM  
Blogger Michelle @ Give a Girl a Fig said...

Poor little guy! He sure looks comfy and cozy though...praying with you that he heals quickly and pulls through. I feel confident that he can do it Earl!

March 17, 2013 at 7:03 PM  
Blogger Kris said...

Jenna, I have no idea. It's always something new and never anything I've ever had to deal with. Yet. I agree though with the yogurt or Probios. And B12 couldn't hurt. Hoping he gets better soon. You are a great new goat mamma.

March 17, 2013 at 9:01 PM  
Blogger Michelle said...

I haven't dealt with this particular malady, so I have no advise. I just wanted to let me know I'm praying for his healing and your wisdom. (((HUGS)))

March 17, 2013 at 9:38 PM  
Blogger Kati said...

I don't have goats, so I don't have any advice either, but I'm praying for this little guy! HUGS!

March 17, 2013 at 10:42 PM  
Blogger blind irish pirate said...

Hey-o. I will try to keep it concise in the interest of your space + applicability to your farm.

If the antibiotics aren't clearing it up quickly, then I would not continue to use them - that just leads to antibiotic resistant bacteria. My experiences with infected umbilicus (naval ill) in foals, calves and goats is usually at a stage that it cannot be treated medically and they must be removed surgically.

The umbilicus is a gateway for bacteria to enter the body and, if left untreated, the infected umbilicus can lead to a full body infection (pneumonia, colitis and joint infections). The umbilical stump has several remnants in it that lead to the liver and all the way back to the bladder. The infection can be caused by either an external contaminant (such as not dipping the umbilicus) OR, a remnant being partially or fully open, such as in the case of a patent urachus. While in utero, the fetus's waste is transported from fetus's bladder through the urachus and out via the umbilicus. it should close naturally when the umbilicus breaks but sometimes it does not. In the instance that the urachus is open, the baby will urinate not only through the urethra but also through the umbilicus, causing their to be 2 streams of urine.

I have never seen a kid with a patient urachus, but maybe it is something to keep an eye out for, as they do not often close on their own, especially once an infection is present.

I would avoid opening and reopening the umblical stump and flushing it, as it can push bacteria further up into his body and into those umbilical remnants. As a practice, we dip the umbilicus of neonates two to four times a day.

Does he have a fever? Keeping him quiet, stress free and with plenty of fluids and water will help him fight the infection. You may be able to help him kick it on his own, but I would be very watchful of it getting worse (larger, hotter, draining, depressed or lethargic attitude) or staying stagnant (he may be a thrifty kid).

If it isn't getting better within a couple of days, it would be wise to reassess the plan. I know that money is tight and that large animal vets can be hard to come by, but calling in the big guns may be warranted if he can't do it on his own. Umbilical infections at such a young age aren't anything to sneeze at, I think.

March 17, 2013 at 10:46 PM  
Blogger Unknown said...

The joint ill needs antibiotics. He is to young to have an active rumen, so that would be the last thing I would worry about. Vitamin B complex helps with healing but make sure you do not overdose.
You may need to find out if your goats (and sheep) are deficient in selieum.
Bo-Se maybe of assistance if you suspect White muscle disease. You will need to get it from a vet. But knowing if your feed and soil is deficient is important.
There are those of us that give Bo-Se to lambs as soon as they are born, but again we are aware that we have an issue

March 17, 2013 at 10:46 PM  
Blogger teri said...

hey jenna,
brenda's advice above is good... we dip all our kids' navels, still had one get an infection our first year with kids... just happens sometimes... the pen g should take care of it... if not, then you can move to something stronger, but i would start with the pen g (i think that's what you said you have?)...

also probiotics to help replace the good bacteria in the rumen that the pen g will kill along with the bad...

cayenne tincture (as brenda mentioned, for the b vits) or a *b complex* (not just b12), preferably fortified b complex (fortified means extra thiamine) won't hurt him, but probably isn't necessary unless he is off his feed... (the bacteria in the rumen produce b vits... if the rumen is off, the goat is not making their own... this is why b vits are often recommended for sick goats)... if you feel better giving it to him, like i said, it won't hurt...

you don't need bose - this is not white muscle disease (which is not an infection, rather it is caused by selenium deficiency)... some people give bose as a matter of course if they live in a selenium-deficient area... this is something you can find out from your vet and/or extension agent... but it isn't necessary in this specific case, as this is a bacterial infection...

keep him comfortable and eating and drinking, keep his navel area clean, and do the anti- and pro-biotics, and he'll be back to his usual bouncy kid self in a couple of days...

all the best,
braided bower farm

March 17, 2013 at 11:01 PM  
Blogger Maddrey said...

If his hind end seems stiff and wobbly the Pro Pen is great but a shot of tetanus anti toxin may help as well.
I use yogurt mixed with raw apple cider vinegar, local honey and good molasses to help the gut keep going. Usually have to syringe it in the first time and they get the picture and eat it up after that.
Best of luck, hope he bounces back.

March 18, 2013 at 8:02 AM  
Blogger Maddrey said...

If his hind end seems stiff and wobbly the Pro Pen is great but a shot of tetanus anti toxin may help as well.
I use yogurt mixed with raw apple cider vinegar, local honey and good molasses to help the gut keep going. Usually have to syringe it in the first time and they get the picture and eat it up after that.
Best of luck, hope he bounces back.

March 18, 2013 at 8:02 AM  
Blogger Brenda said...

what does your vet say?

March 18, 2013 at 8:08 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I do so hope he gets better fast!

March 18, 2013 at 8:23 AM  
Blogger Christine said...

Prayers and good energy to your little one - the only thing I can offer is that when I had my first son he had a belly button infection and we did EXACTLY what you are doing - Iodine and antibiotics and keeping it clean - God speed for recovery!

March 18, 2013 at 8:59 AM  
Blogger katiegirl said...

You can't overdose vitamin B. You can only overdose fat soluble vitamins (A, D, E, K). All the rest are water soluble and will get urinated out.

March 18, 2013 at 9:24 AM  
Blogger Unknown said...

The USGC map for your county (Washington, right?) shows good selenium, but 1/4 cc of Bose won't hurt and might help if he is still wobbly. Of course, he might just be wobbly because he doesn't feel good :)

I have Nubians and am in a low selenium area so I routinely give 1/4 cc Bose at birth to my kids. Its amazing how fast it perks them up.

Good luck Little Earl!

March 18, 2013 at 9:59 AM  
Blogger Unknown said...

The USGC map shows your county (Washington, right?) as good on selenium, but 1/4 cc of Bose won't hurt if he is still wobbly. Some animals need more than others and he is young enough that he won't have built up a blood level of selenium where you would have to worry about toxicity. I have Nubians and am in a very low selenium area so I routinely give 1/4 cc of Bose at birth and it is amazing how fast it perks the slow kids up.

Good luck to Little Earl!

March 18, 2013 at 10:03 AM  
Blogger Carolyn said...

I had a foal three years ago that came down with joint ill. We treated with an antibiotic but also ran a culture to see what infection we were fighting-and then changed up the antibiotic to fight that strain of bacteria. She had a terrible case but survived and is being ridden now and is sound. I do think it is important to find out what particular strain you're fighting so you can give him the appropriate antibiotics. Good luck!

March 18, 2013 at 11:00 AM  
Blogger SouthernHeart said...

Awww...he's a beautiful little guy with wonderful markings. Sounds like you're doing all you can for him and have had some great advice from those more experienced than I am. Praying for a quick recovery!


March 18, 2013 at 1:48 PM  

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