Homepage | Introduction | Acknowledgements | Basic requirements and routine procedures | Is my goat healthy? | Using medicines correctly
This part of the manual describes the diseases and conditions that you are most likely to see in your goats. Each page describes a different disease or condition and is set out in a similar manner, describing the diseases and conditions as follows:
- What a particular disease or condition is
- What causes a particular disease or condition
- What the signs are that you see
- How you treat or cure the problem
- How you prevent the problem from happening again
- Any other useful information.
The diseases and conditions are presented in a specific order and we would like to explain why. The diseases and conditions you see in goats can be caused not only by various types of organisms or germs called viruses, bacteria, protozoa or worms, but also by poor nutrition.
Probably the most common cause of abortion in goats is poor nutrition of the does. Problems characterised by sores are abscesses, foot abscesses and orf. Sometimes one disease occurring in a goat can predispose it to a second disease. This is the case with orf and mastitis. Kids may spread orf from their mouths to the teats of their does. Does with orf lesions are, in turn, more likely to develop mastitis. Sometimes the same bacteria can cause more than one disease, for example pneumonia and mastitis can both be caused by Mannheimia.
Some diseases are best prevented through vaccination. This is the case with pulpy kidney and tetanus. Goats with tetanus, bluetongue and heartwater can all show nervous signs, twisting their bodies so that it is important to be able to differentiate the diseases. Finally, coccidiosis and the diseases caused by worms i.e. roundworms, tapeworms and flukes are grouped together since all four are gastro-intestinal parasites and can cause diarrhoea. The section concludes with a suggested vaccination schedule for goats.
If you think your goat is sick but you cannot see the problem in this manual, the goat may be suffering from something more unusual. In that case, ask your local animal health technician or a state or private veterinarian for advice.