Repeated frothy bloat in pregnant doe - please help!

Discussion in 'Dairy Goat Info' started by Granolamom, Feb 8, 2010.

  1. Granolamom

    Granolamom New Member

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    Okay, here we go: I'm brand-spanking new to this forum, and slightly intimidated, due to the fact that I'm a beginner goat keeper amongst so many experts. We've had our 2 Pygmy/Alpine does (mother and daughter) for almost a year, and I'm still learning new things about goat management every day.
    I've had serious issues with my doe, Aisa, who was bred to a Toggenburg billy in October '09, and a good friend of mine recommended posting here, because we can't seem to figure this out.
    On December 25th she had the first of numerous frothy bloat attacks, and we cannot seem to find a reason for her bloating. She also has an increased breathing rate (I counted 42 breaths per minute, while she was resting!), and I hear watery, sloshing sounds from her rumen for the better part of the day. She has access to free-choice hay (we've recently switched from fescue to bermuda, and now to Alfalfa), and Noble Goat medicated pellets. I also have free-choice Golden Blend minerals (which she really has no interest in), and a billy goat mineral block for her. I change their water daily, and keep the goat shed clean (Stall-dry, wood shavings, and straw as bedding). I used to cut fresh brush for my goats on a daily basis (currently mostly privet and some pine, since that's all we have at the moment in Georgia), but have stopped completely, because the last 2 times I gave it to them, she bloated within 30 minutes. I top dress her grain with Probios, and treat her with the Probio gel after every bloat attack. I've become fairly good at knowing when she's about to have another attack (always in the evening, never during the day), and have started to catch it before it gets really bad by immediately drenching her with olive oil and baking soda. Afterwards she's fine, and will act like nothing happened the next day.
    Her droppings look normal, and she urinates normal. I suspect that she could have large, multlple kids, because she still has 5 weeks to go, and she is HUGE.
    I feel like I sound terribly ignorant here, but please believe me that I love this girl dearly, and want to do what's best for her. I've been trying to find a vet who will come to my house and look at her (being the way she is, loading her up in my car and taking her somewhere will likely send her into early labor), but have not found one. I have spoken to several local breeders and asked for input, but we have not come up with anything. One thing I've done over the past 2 days is to spread out her grain into 5 separate meals, instead of her usual morning and evening meal. She has not bloated since, but I dare not hope that it was that easy to fix the problem. If you have any ideas/input, it will be greatly appreciated. Thank you!
     
  2. buckrun

    buckrun New Member

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    My first thought is ditch the privet. We have had nothing but trouble with it.
    That may be your entire problem. Welcome and I know you will get lots of good input.
    Lee
     

  3. Granolamom

    Granolamom New Member

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    Lee - I've ditched it. It's all she ever got (besides crushed corn) from her previous owner, who never had any kind of issues with her (so he said), and I've been feeding it to her and her daughter all of last year, but I have now completely stopped, and will not feed it ever again. For now, good hay and pellets is it for her (no treats, either, like rolled oats, carrots, or the occasional apple, which she used to love). Hopefully this will do the trick.
     
  4. NubianSoaps.com

    NubianSoaps.com New Member

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    and a buck goat mineral block for her...can you tell use the brand and name so we can look it up. More than half the protein goat blocks I looked at this year were moer than 25% molassas, why they crumble rather than being rock hard like mineral blocks are. Also 2, even with goats on the label contained urea.

    Lee knows her horiculuture, so between the fescue which has a notorius past for causing all sorts of problems in goats and horses, and the privet, perhaps that is it.

    And what exactly happens when she does bloat..because alot of folks who see big full rumens in their vertically challenged goats see bloat when it's a normal full rumen at the end of the day. We talking down, kicking at her belly, screaming bloat, or just a big soft rumen? Vicki
     
  5. Bernice

    Bernice Member

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    Besides what Vicki and lee mentioned I have one other thought, congestive heart problems?
     
  6. Granolamom

    Granolamom New Member

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    Vicky, I have a mineral block in there ("Billy Block" from Tractor Supply, I don't know the brand right now but will look it up). I've only recently put it in there, because Aisa never seems to eat any of the Golden Blend minerals. She started bloating long before I offered the mineral block to her.
    As far as the bloat is concerned: yes, it's definitely bloat, unless there's another issue that causes a huge, raised, hard area on the left side, which sounds like a drum when tapped, along with white foam being thrown up all over the goatshed and run. She is not down, when it happens, but walks around restlessly, crying and throwing up everywhere. No mistaking it for just a full belly...
    This has happened 7 times since December 25th.
     
  7. Granolamom

    Granolamom New Member

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    Hmmm. I thought it was a typo the first time, but this time I DEFINITELY wrote b-i-l-l-y block, and it got changed to buck block. That's just the name of the product. no offense intended...
     
  8. buckrun

    buckrun New Member

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    Everything in the ligustrum family has high levels of toxic glycosides. They are mainly digestive irritants which in a ruminant can lead to lots of secondary problems. They love it and will suicide on it if you let them. Hard not to give them something they are so avid for. Hopefully it will be that easy to fix!

    I looked up the block and it is just pressed minerals altho the image was too blurry for me to see the percentages it does not look to have a lot of additives. Probios is not a wide enough range of microbes to do much good in rebuilding a damaged rumen. Can you find anyone to get you a small amt of Diamond V DFM yeast? This is a wide range of microbes in a baking soda base with yeast for nutrients. It also has enzymes she may not be producing herself right now. Do you have a feed store that lets you buy less than a full bag of things? This is a feed additive and only comes in 50 pound bags so you would not use it in a lifetime on 2 goats.
    http://www.diamondv.com/products/XPDFM/index.htm

    Lee
     
  9. MRFBarbara

    MRFBarbara Guest

    Also what is in your Noble Medicated goat pellets, how much grain are you giving her a day..
    Barb
     
  10. NubianSoaps.com

    NubianSoaps.com New Member

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    It's a pretty decent product Barb, I am going to use it on my kids this spring. But of course like everything Purina, the products in it at one plant, doesn't mean it's the same at the other. Here I can get it with Rumensin in it (Moensin), and it's only 15 minutes away instead of 40! Vicki
     
  11. Sondra

    Sondra New Member

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    Alfalfa hay will cause this if the goat isn't used to it. Some alfalfa hay depends on cuttings is very hot.
     
  12. Granolamom

    Granolamom New Member

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    I will try to find a source for the Diamond V DFM yeast (perhaps one of the local goat folks with let me purchase enough for just my 2 girls).
    As far as the Noble goat pellets are concerned: between both of them, they get 5 cups per day, spread out into 5 different feedings, to decrease the change of her ingesting too much at one time.
    The reason I now feed Alfalfa (the bloating started long before I switched to it), is because I was advised to do so by a reputable local Pygmy goat breeder with 30 years of experience. It's all he ever feeds to his goats, and he's never had a case of bloat, other than a few that happened after C-sections. I do alternate between the bermuda I still have, and the new Alfalfa.
    In my first post I forgot to mention that I used to add a small amount of DE to everybody's feed bin (cats, chickens, and goats as well). Since my doe has started having such problems, I have discontinued adding DE to the goat feed, and hope fervently that this is not what has caused her issues.
     
  13. Sondra

    Sondra New Member

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    yes I agree alfalfa hay is the best for the goats just bringing out the fact that this sometimes will cause bloat if they eat too much at one time. DE won't cause the bloating.
     
  14. Granolamom

    Granolamom New Member

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    Sondra, I'm glad you said that about the DE not causing the bloat. It was recommended to me by a friend of mine in Germany who, like me, is really into keeping things as natural and chemical free as possible. I have used it successfully on my cats and chickens, but have for now discontinued it on the goats, because I don't want to take any changes with anything.
    I probably don't need to worry about them bloating from the alfalfa hay, because - believe it or not - they don't really like it all that much! They nibble on it, but often go back to the bermuda I have in there, and definitely don't overeat on it. My gut feeling is that Aisa has a permanent case of indigestion, and maybe it has to do with her pregnancy. Could indigestion cause frothy bloat?
     
  15. stacy adams

    stacy adams New Member

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    What type of bermuda are you feeding? Gosh, mine won't eat it at all, they will pick, but that's it.
     
  16. Granolamom

    Granolamom New Member

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    Stacy, I don't really know what kind of Bermuda hay it is. It was the only alternative they had at my local feedstore, other than fescue, and so I tried it out. They loved it on the first few days, and then kind of got over it (just like they do with everything other than oats, which is their favorite treat, and they would eat until they explode).
    I forgot to mention one more thing in my first post: both of my goats eat dirt, when they get a chance (they don't do it in their pen, even though they could. There's a plowed field behind our house, which is the only area where they will eat dirt, if they get to it). What does that mean?
     
  17. luvzmybabz

    luvzmybabz New Member

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    NOt sure about goats eating dirt but have heard of humans ( young and old ) that are missing essential minerals vitamons etc eating dirt.
     
  18. buckrun

    buckrun New Member

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    This is an attempt to refurbish the rumen which baby goats do to get kickstarted.
    Get them some rotten logs if you can find them and they will eat all the fluff which will give them a pad or floor on the rumen to start rebuilding the microbial population needed for proper digestion. This tells you they are way off if they are eating dirt.
    Good they still have the instinct and opportunity. That is why I suggested the Diamond V but the fluff out of decomposed logs is very good too especially if you can find some inner bark which is full of minerals and nutrients and even as Ashely will tell you- medicinal properties.
    Lee
     
  19. NubianSoaps.com

    NubianSoaps.com New Member

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    I would bolus them for copper, perhaps someone on the forum who makes these could simply send you a few for your small group. They are definetly missing something in their diet to be eating dirt, something normally only seen in kids. Being in Georgia your likely copper defficient like the rest of us.

    DE...it works very well for worming and parasites in single stomached animals, your cats and chickens. But goats are ruminants and other than putting out DE in their manure, which could possible keep fly larve down in their poop, it has been shown by Texas A&M not to worm and to show no change in the larve or eggs found in the manure. To be using something with the dangers it has for inahalation, daily in your animals is something I am not willing to do having asthma. So if you do choose to start using it again, no it's limitations.

    I have no idea what your Purina goat minerals have in them but here they are a simple single source of copper sulfate which makes up the 1850 PPMs of copper in the bag...that is a whole lot of copper sulfate which we know causes problems in the rumen. I would make their diet much simpilar, take out all the browse you are cutting for them, hay, their feed, their minerals, water (with nothing added) and go from there. Too much change isn't good, especially if the change is not consistant....ie. Feed both hays together daily, not one and then the other, if you are going to add anything to the grain make sure it is improving the grain, then do it daily. Vicki