Bio-Chlor to prevent calculi (Bladder stones) : LUSENET : Dairygoats : One Thread

Has anyone used a feed product called Bio-Chlor (made by Biovance Technologies)to acidify the urine of goats to prevent calculi (bladder stones)? It is used by sheep and cattle. I was wondering if it would work on goats.

I have lost two whethers to urolithiasis and don't want to go through that again. They had been castrated as young kids and had been fed grain for six months before I got them. One had to be put down at eight months, the other made it to three years before he plugged up. I only fed them grass-hay/alfalfa. My newborn buck I plan to hold off on castrating until he is 4 months. Anyway, I was wondering if there is anyone with experience with Bio-Chlor, it seems to work well in sheep and cows.

-- Kristine Taylor (, March 11, 2002


I have ammonium chloride in our grain mix. If I didn't and when we didn't I purchased ammonium chloride from (pipestonce vet clinic in Minnesota). If you have to add ammonium chloride yourself you just put 1 teaspoon per head per day over their grain. Ammonium Chloride looks like salt and is very inexpensive. Did I mention that I would use ammonium chloride :) Vicki

-- Vicki McGaugh TX (, March 11, 2002.

I'd also like to mention that we use ammonium chloride. It is in minute quantities in the lamb finisher pellets that we buy and I've also purchased 2# from my vet for about $6.

-- Charleen in WNY (, March 12, 2002.

Thanks for your reply. I should have mentioned that I tried ammonium chloride. No mater how I mixed it or tried to disguise it, the goats wouldn't eat it. I don't want to feed the boys a lot of grain anyway since my vet said that the grain and early castration might have caused the stones. I have heard from someone else that has tried Bio- Chlor on goats with good results (drop in urine ph). Biovance gives free samples so I think I'll try it when my buckling is weaned. To find out about Bio-Chlor, check out

-- Kristine Taylor (, March 12, 2002.

Hi Kristine, I went to the website since it sounded so familiar. Well it should be! Its the Arm and Hammer that we use for our rumen buffer in our milkers!

Bio-Chlor is a rumen fermentation product, not a urine ph acidifier. It does not work like ammonium chloride does, has only to do with the PH of the rumen and not the PH of the urine like AC! Bio-Chlor is very similar to the Diamond V Yeast that we feed, same claims etc.

AC is nothing put a mineralized salt, it is bitter, and salty. If you were to put it into even the smallest amount of sweet feed your goats will eat it. If you feed them enough 1 tsp per head per day, than they will not get stones, unless you have something else going on at your place like sulfur in your water, or sulfur mineral blocks out. Protein is the number one cause of urinary calculi in bucks, second is the overfeeding of calcium to phosphurus with the feeding of alflafa hay, meal or pellets. If castration causes Urinary Calculi than why do full grown intact bucks also get this? It is a very old fashion notion that a bucks urethrea does not mature after he is castrated. Feed the AC, give your bucks the AC in their mineral mix if you are not going to grain them. Pipestone Vet Services in Minnesota sell it, it is very inexpensive. or better yet give them a call and talk to their vets, very knowledgeable guys, since all the goat UC information has come from Rams. They know how to mix it or how to feed it, in other ways other than grain. Good luck with this. Your vet would cringe having me for a customer! vicki

-- Vicki McGaugh TX (, March 13, 2002.

I'm also trying to find a more palatable way to give the ammonium chloride. My wether wouldn't even look at the grain with it mixed in! Mixing a tsp. of ammonium chloride into a heaping Tbsp. peanut butter works quite well, though. Yum! I use whatever kind I can find that only has 2 ingredients: Peanuts and salt, rather than all that other unnecessary junk they add to it.

I was concerned about your use of alfalfa. I've been told that alfalfa is bad for goat stomachs; it's only good for horses. I've also been told that fescue is not nutritional for goats or horses (but ok for cattle). I understand that timothy and orchardgrass are good for goats (fresh or as hay), and I presume there are other good kinds as well.

-- M. Bock (, September 12, 2002.

I just went to the Association of Small Ruminant Practitioners presentations at the North American Veterinary Conference in Orlando, and several of the presenting vets concurred that the development of the penis and urethra is indeed arrested when a goat is castrated at a very young age. Many of the vets recommended 4-6 months (just before they start to smell "goaty"). While it is true that some bucks also experience problems with urinary calculi, it is much more prevalent in wethers.

-- Cindy Horton (, February 14, 2003.

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