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FKS - Scientific explanation for it, Treatment, Testimonials..

November's here again, and already goats are beginning to
freshen. And, of course, owners are already running into their
share of kid problems...

So I'm sending this FKS info now, in the hope that it will save
some of those kids' lives...

Sue Reith.

FKS... How it happens... (a detailed scientific explanation of
the process...)

For those that find this stuff interesting, this info on how FKS
comes about in goat birthing originated, with some species
transfer from canine to caprine to help us understand how it
happens in goats as well, from notes taken at a veterinary
seminar by Jacob Mosier DVM, a well respected canine veterinarian
at Kansas State University College of Veterinary Medicine. His
research on the phenomenon concluded that: ???At birth a
newborn puppy should have a pH level of 7.4. A puppy can be hung
up in the birth canal for too long or the bitch might not remove
the sac, causing delayed breathing. We need to be sure it
breathes fairly soon because the longer it doesn???t, the
more its blood pH level drops, the more acidotic it becomes.
During the time it???s still wet (about 20 minutes), the pH
drops to about 7.1. If it drops to 6.6 the heart will stop.
Despite the delay in the birth process, once revived and
breathing FPS pups appear healthy and strong. But then around the
36th to 72nd hour ?? they begin to fade and lose vigor, and
the tongue is pale. By the 96th hour, without correction of the
pH balance (that's where Baking Soda comes into the picture!),
thus reversing the acid condition that has begun, they become
flaccid and die.???

Sue Reith.

Treating FLOPPY KID SYNDROME - Sue Reith

I have found, in treating several FKS kids in this community over
the past
few years, (all of which had successful outcomes) that I did
three things
not listed in either FKS posts... I did those 3 things, noted
below, because
with the first kid, brought to me fairly late in the game, I was
not getting good
results with treatment until I did so, and found the results so
remarkably quick
when I did apply them that I used them the rest of the time on
the FKS kids.

(#1) I gave a dose of Enterotoxemia Antitoxin (NOT the TOXOID!)
because while
the stomach was not digesting food it was a perfect setup for
which is always present in a goat's gut unless it has been
properly vaccinated,
and which is opportunistic and flourishes the minute the stomach
does not digest
its contents. That first FKS kid rather quickly indicated
problems with abdominal
pain, classic for Enterotoxemia. The Entero Antitoxin reversed

(#2) I gave SQ doses of BoSe (1cc/40lbs) every 2nd day for the
first 6 days, and
continued weekly for 2 more times after that.

(#3) I gave SQ doses of inj. Fortified B-Complex every day for
the first 4 days.

The FKS kids were so weak when they were brought to me that I had
to tube
Pedialyte into them, and then began to tube combinations of oral
amino acids
and electrolytes, dextrose, and bicarbonate of soda (baking soda)
into them
3x daily for about 3 days until they could once again take a

I also gave oral doses of Pepto Bismol intermittently throughout
the day,
and of course Probios, which is essential as well.

The improvement was remarkable once I established that formula of
All of those kids I treated are doing fine today.

One caveat should be offered here, however. It is possible to
have a
combination of troubles all at once in a single kid! One of the
kids I
treated was discovered, as soon as I brought it around from the
FKS, to be
suffering from Joint Ill at the same time! We then had to start
on a whole
different regimen of treatment with which we finally got that
under control
as well.

Sue Reith
Carmelita Toggs
Bainbridge Island WA


Joyce Lazzaro forwarded the following report to me for my

Species Committee Report - Goat

Floppy Kid Syndrome (Metabolic Acidosis without Dehydration in
Report prepared by Drs. Joan Dean Rowe and Nancy E. East, School
Veterinary Medicine, University of California, Davis.

Background: Kids with this clinical syndrome were first reported
in spring
on 1987, although there are anecdotal reports of herds with this
several years earlier. First recognized in herds on the west
coast and in
Canada (Tremblay et al), it has more recently been recognized
the U.S. With the increase in popularity of Boer and other meat
there has been an apparent increase in reports of floppy kid
syndrome in
state where meat goat numbers are high.

Clinical Signs/Case Definition: A "floppy kid syndrome" case
defined as a
kid who is normal at birth and develops sudden onset of profound
weakness a at 3 to 10 day of age, with Acidosis, but no detected
Thus the case definition excludes kids with system abnormalities
which could
otherwise explain the acidosis. Affected kids have no sign of
diarrhea, respiratory
disease, or other signs referable to a specific organic system.
can develop as a secondary problem after it has begun.

Treatment: Early detection and correction of base deficit as
well as good
supportive care are critical. Less severe cases are most
commonly treated
by owners with oral bicarbonate of soda and Peptobismol at the
onset of signs.
Kids may need to be fed by stomach tube.


(Some Testimonials follow that were submitted by list members)

>>I first experienced FKS three years ago -- I had a little Togg
doe kid
that was a little more slow than the others -- but it was
not constant. It was like if we watched her in the pen, she
would walk a
little drunk-like. So, in order to get a closer look, we would
open the
pen gate and let the kids run - - and she would be just as lively
as the
rest. One minute OK, the next minute drunk. This is what I
watch for
now as it is the early stage for me and the stage that is the
easiest to
treat. But, as I watched her over the next day or two, she did
start to get
worse -- wasn't really eating and when she did, she was
about it -- tongue hanging out the side of the mouth is very
But, because I didn't know what I had, it hit hard and fast for
me -- by
the time I was remembering what some others had said they had
through, I had a flat out kid in a box in the house as I sat on
the phone
asking my friend -- "Describe FKS to me -- I think I may have
it." Well, I
lost that first kid. But the ones I had after that that first
year all
survived and I remember at least 10 more. The kind we were
dealing with
usually hits between 2 to 14 days<<

>>It's hard for the kid to digest any milk -- in fact if you pick
a FKS kid
up and shake it -- you can hear the milk sloshing around in a
soft squishy
belly. As I said, they also get very uncoordinated and drunk
like -- I had
kids that first year that if I tried to stand them up they would
just flop
down like a marionette whose strings have just been dropped. If
let it go
beyond that, they will go flat out,develop pneumonia and die.<<

>>How did I treat? Real simple -- 12 cc Pepto Bismol, or any
generic, as
long as it contains the pink bismuth, every 5 hours and 1 cc Vit
Complex daily. In addition, I kept them off milk for at least 24
and tried to feed electrolytes in small amounts every 4 to 6
hours -- but I
didn't push it -- I found it was much better to let them get it
out of their
system before adding the liquid to the already sloshy belly.
Once started
on the Pepto Bismol, I found recovery was imminent for me. The
year, freshening 28 does, 19 of them all in one month, I was
disaster. I was ready to don a holster with a pair of Pepto
bottles and 12
cc syringes -- my motto for that year was "Have Pepto will
travel!!" -- but,
fortunately, I had no drastic outbreaks. What I did was sort of
around the dreaded time period. If a kid looked like they were
playing with
the nipple, or maybe putting their mouth on and just holding it
there or
standing dazed or whatever -- I hit them with a dose of Pepto --
and as I
had been told, if you caught it early -- sometimes 1 dose of
Pepto was
enough to bring them around. I had no real problems that year or
this past
year. Anything that looked suspect was given Pepto right away
progression of FKS was deterred. I also started adding the
baking soda once
a day to the lambars and, continued with adding Probios powder to
the milk
daily. I believe doing this around that dreaded 2-week time slot
was the
best preventative I could have done.<<

>>I just put some pepto in a syringe and add enough baking soda
so that the
mixture will go through the syringe into the kid's mouth. Often
this will
do if you get it early; otherwise it is necessary to tube in an

>>20 ml of Pepto ASAP, a shot of vit B, don't feed milk till they
start to
respond cause their tummies are shut down and they can't digest
food....you can use baking soda, 50% oral Dextrose and
Electrolyte solution
to keep them alive...<<

>>also vitamen B complex, probiotics, and electrolytes-lots of
fluids ---but no milk <<

>>I have a friend who has had that happen with her 2 or 3 day old
She immediately takes them off milk and feeds them electrolyte
like pedialite. Once they seem stable, she tries them on milk
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