Loose stool is not a disease, but a symptom. The cause of loose stool are sometimes as simple as diet change or as serious as endotoxicmia. What do you do in the case of loose stool? At Diamond k Goats, we first try to determin why.
If the goat is under 4 months old the most common casue of loose stool is cocci. This is easily treated with medication, but left untreated it is deadly. Another reason for loose stool in younger goats is E-coli. This can be treated with cinnamon. Always have a vet run a stool check to make sure what the goat has before treating. Another cause can be milk replacer. Going from mom to a bottle is a diet change. Always mix the milk replacer a little weaker than it says to mix. We use to have kids with loose stool just because of this reason. Since we've changed the way we mix formula, no more problems.
With older goats the problem is not so easy to determin. A change in diet is the most common reason for loose stool in adult goats. When switching feeds, do so slowly so the rumen can adjust to the different ingredinets. If you can not mix the new feed with the old feed, ( example: the feed store is out of your feed and only has another brand) feed only hay for several days and then introduce the new feed a little at a time. We have used this method and it works well. Sometimes when goats eat green grass or browse after being on no grass the stool will get loose. These forms of loose stool should clear themselves up in a day or so.
But what if you have not changed diet and the goat has loose stool. Take the temperature to make sure the goat is not sick. Some illness have loose stool as a symptom. Sometimes medication will clear up the problem and in doing so clear up the loose stool. Alway check with a vet to find out how and what to give your goat.
If the goat is not running a fever, but is acting like it just does not feel good: its off feed, laying down a lot and not chewing its cud, then you might have endotoxicmia. This needs to be treated right away and very quickly. High doses of C & D Antitoxin along with Pen G need to be given. Electroliytes should also be offered because loose stool will dehyradate a goat real fast.
If a goat has loose stool but is acting OK, then we give several doses of C & D Antitoxin followed by Some Slippery Elm and a homemade mixture of cinnamon,garlic,slippery elm,cloves,ginger and water (recipe below). Also Scour Halt (for swine) works good. Dose is 5-6 cc every 1/2 hour to hour.
This recipe is from my friend in Texas. She is my goats guardian angle. She has saved my goats more than once.
Scour Mix by Brandywine.
1 tsp cinnamon
1 tsp clove
2 tsp ginger
2 tsp slippery elm (health food stores or Hoeggers Goat Supply)
1 tsp garlic ( I use liquid)
2 cups of water
Bring to slow simmer on low heat while stirring.
I then place in jar and cover and allow to cool for about 20 minutes.
I have been using it for
the past few years with awesome results.
Give 6-12 cc's orally several times a day.
I have also mixed it with scour halt with very good results
As always, if your goats has developed loose stool , ask yourself a few questions: Have you changed any feeding habits? Is your goat sick? Don't hesitate to call a vet and ask questions if your not sure why you goats has loose stool.
Diamond K Goats is not responsibile for the health of your goat. You must seek the advice of a large animal vet who knows about goats if your goats is sick. The above methods are not "cures", but methods we use on our farm. These methods might not work for you and if you use them, you do so at your own risk.