Milk won't strain (Mastitis in goat?) : LUSENET : Freedom! self reliance : One Thread

New goat's milk won't strain, udder feels warm to touch. I am assuming this is mastitis. I've had goats for two years now, but have never dealt with this problem. Bearing in mind that I do not deal in registered or expensive goats, but nevertheless love them, and hope to be able to treat this myself, do ya'll have suggestions for me? A new friend, who happens to be a vet, suggested that I could probably pick up some kind of infusion drug at the feed store, and perhaps inject something as well(I think she suggested tetracycline.) How difficult is the infusion to do(doesn't sound that easy to me). Does anyone know what that drug is called? Also, when I had mastitis, it was treated with penicillin. Is that not a drug that would work for the same problem in goats? Thanks for your kind suggestions.

-- mary, in colorado (, June 22, 2001


You can't strain older does colostrum sometimes. The first at least 36 hour milk is the first milk from the doe, and the older a doe gets the thicker and more yellow it becomes. But once in milk all milk is the same. The very best thing to do is to milk some of this into a clean, boiled clean, mason jar and freeze it. This will be your control milk, so that after we have all gotten through with guessing, if she is ill than you can send in for a milk sample, get a good diagnosis and treat with the correct drugs.

At the feed store their will be udder infusions, for wet (in milk) cows. Next to them will be the (dry) infusion for use in a cow you are drying up. So choose the wet one. Since most of the mastitis you see commonly is staph, choose an infusion that treats Staph. You can use any 300,000 unit pennicillin at 3cc per 50 pounds, given twice a day for 5 days, you will also be infusing the udder, do each side even if only one side is effected for 3 days, morning and night. So.......put the doe on the milk stand or in a clean area clipped to the fence. Milk out all of the milk you can get out, clean her udder off really well, then clean her teat. The infusion will come with alcohol wipes, so don't forget to pick them up. Clean the teats with them and then clean the hole (orifice) clean is the trick, or you will just introduce more bacteria in the teat, causing more problems. Set/push the tip of the tube up against the teat opening, you do not have to push it into the hole. Pinching the teat end with one hand, press the plunger and make sure the meds are going into the teat. Now pinch the teat end shut, and strip the meds up into the teat and up into the udder. Massage the udder as good as you can, trying to disperse the meds into it. Do the other side of the udder. You will repeat all of this morning and night for 3 days. Some folks don't use infusions, and opt for every 3 hour milking and massaging with something cooling like Vics vapor rub or comfrey to keep the udder working and the bacteria out of the udder. Give the pen shots subq at the same time each day 12 hours apart, and don't stop giving them even if she does get better.

If you do choose an infusion that is a cycline, than yes you can choose to use a tetracycline as your "shot" drug also. But please choose Bio-myacin instead of LA200 since you can give it under the skin, and also it has a non sting carrier.

You will be guessing on whether to use Tetracycline or Pennicillin or Naxcel or or or......each treats a different kind of mastitis, in the long run unless you guess accuratly, it is cheaper to run the milk test, milk her out as often as you can and wait for the results....unless she is ill, running a fever or is off her grain.

How long has she been fresh? Is she nursing her kids? Are you milking her twice a day? Do you prewash the udder, and do you teat dip afterwards? What is her temperature? Do you have a CMT test? If not mix an equal amount of her milk and dawn (only dawn) dishwashing liquid, swirl it in a shallow bowl and tell me what it looks like. Vicki

-- Vicki McGaugh (, June 23, 2001.

Dang Vicki, you rock!

Mary, I hope your goat gets better asap! I would have just told you to milk her out completely four or five times a day and massage the udder very deeply and get a test for mastitis done from the first of the morning milk. Then I would have given her whatever the vet suggested.

-- Doreen (, June 23, 2001.

I agree, despite the cost of having a milk culture done, it's cheaper in the long run to KNOW what type of mastitis you're dealing with and to treat it with the proper antibiotic. Treating with the wrong antibiotic is costly and time consuming, and in the meantime, your goat gets even worse and could end up with permanent damage. Not to mention you can't use the milk while she has mastitis or is being treated.

-- Lenett (, June 24, 2001.

Thanks, ladies, for the suggestions. Newgoat is a yearling,first freshened a week or so before I brought her home, never milked by previous owner (kid on). Might colustrum still be the issue? New vetfriend told me she had recently lost a goat to mastitis, and so, feeling overly anxious to nip a problem in the bud, I did start her on infusions ("Today") as well as penicillin, on Friday. I was pleasantly surprised that the infusing was not so difficult to do, but rather easy (Following Vicki's instructions from a CS archive.) Any suggestions on how long the kid should stay off after infusion? Thanks again.

-- mary, in colorado (, June 24, 2001.

Is the kid a doeling? If she is you may want to put her on the pennicillin also. Nipping staph in the bud also in her. She will freshen with staph mastitis just like her dam did, because she probably caught it from nursing her dam :) The infusion Today is water soluable, so once you milk out the last of it, it is gone. Tommorrow the dry cow is oil soluable and stays in the udder. You don't have to worry about a milk withdrawl on the shots you are giving. Well for house milk yes. And don't believe for an instance that the pennicillin, wormer etc. is in the milk in enough amounts to "worm" or treat the kid! With them not milking her and just letting the kid nurse, you could be dealing with some clogged up colostrum in the system, especially from the side the kid didn't empty all the way. Nothing you are doing is really hurting anything, though you need to finish the treatment anyway. If she had some horrid form of mastitis believe me you would be seeing it by now. Just keep the udder empty, even with kids nursing you really have to empty the udder daily or you loose production, something the kids will need when they are older! Unless of course the doe herself is a very poor milker.

A really good thing to keep in the back of your mind with your goats is that you do not reach for antibiotics unless they have a fever. You can use pennicillin for a horrible wound, to bar infection, but using meds when you really don't need them are actually worse for the goat. Sort of like pouring bleach down your septic tank than wondering why you have to have to pumped all the time. Vicki

-- Vicki McGaugh (, June 24, 2001.

I resicuded a doe that was in poor condition form the local sale barn, in Oct.03 Jan 28th,04 she had two babies--a girl and a boy. Her bag has been very large the last few weeks--they are very hard and no milk--I worked one for a while and small amount of blood came out. I am bottle feeding the kids and I went to the local feed store and bought a recimended infusion and injected it. This morning her bag is still large and hard. And very sore to the slightest touch. What do I do next? Thanks

-- Donnah Warren (www,, January 30, 2004.

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