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 Post subject: goat de-wormer
PostPosted: Thu Aug 21, 2003 6:25 pm 
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Location: Buffalo (midway between Dallas and Houston)
Does anyone out there have an informed opinion on what to use for goat de-wormer?

Thanks,
banot


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PostPosted: Thu Aug 21, 2003 6:50 pm 
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Has DE been unsuccessful for you?


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PostPosted: Mon Aug 25, 2003 11:35 am 
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Hi Banot,

You've asked the question of the hour for goat owners! I have dwarf nigerians and have been doing research and reading on this topic. I have a lot of info to share. Hope I don't bore you to death!! :)

Probably the most important thing you can do to improve control of internal parasites is improve the health of your goats through mineral supplementation. Animals with sufficient minerals in their tissues, copper in particular, are not good hosts for internal parasites and goats have higher mineral requirements that any other typical farm animal. If you don't deal with the mineral deficiencies, you will be constantly having to deal heavy worm loads. And as you know, in Texas lots of goat owners have significant problems with worms and use lots of chemical wormers.

Since most of our agricultural lands in the U.S. are copper deficient (and low in lots of other important minerals as well), the hay and grain based feeds grown on these soils are also likely to be deficient. So you will need to chose feed that has ample additional copper and offer a good mineral mix free choice. If you are grazing on your own pasture or making your own hay, you may also want to do some soil tests and remineralize your soil. Sound familiar?

If you use a pellet or some other premixed feed, make sure it contains significant copper. If your feed (or mineral) is labeled for sheep and goats, it will not have enough copper since copper at the levels required for goats is toxic to sheep. Look for a feed that is formulated just for goats and has 18 to 20 ppm copper.

Make sure you have a good mineral mix available free choice. There are some good mineral mixes designed for goats. Some are even formulated for goats on alfalfa vs grass hay. I am using a mineral mix I make up from kelp meal (~60%), Redmond Conditioner (~30%), dairy yeast (~5%) and flax seed (~5%). The goats love it big time. They are just as interested in the minerals as they are in their feed. If you don't have Redmond Conditioner, give them straight kelp meal free choice and add the other items as they are available. The dairy yeast (Diamond V brand is sold at Wells Brothers in Plano) is a good source of vitamins and probiotics that help the rumen. It also makes the mineral mix more palletable. 8)

While I use DE as part of my program (I mix it into their feed daily), I don't count on it to totally control worms. I think it's main benefit comes after it is eliminated by the animal. It's presence in the manure probably helps to kill the eggs and worms once they hatch, reducing reinfestation. It seems to help reduce worm loads, but I'm not convinced it is the complete solution. :?

A related approach is rotational grazing. By rotating where the animals are contained, you can reduce their exposure to worms. However, my most recent reading suggests that to be effective, your goats will have to stay off the pasture for at least 3 months to reduce the likelyhood that your animals will be reinfested when they graze.

You can also use herbal wormers instead of chemical wormers. Herbs work differently from chemicals. Instead of applying when you see evidence of worms, you give herbal wormers on a weekly basis throughout the year. I use the herbal womer sold by Molly's Herbals (see fiascofarm website). I can't assure you on the success of herbal wormers. There are a lot of goat owners who say they are completely ineffective and that I'm nuts for using them. But then again, these owners generally do not raise their animals naturally and often rely on various types of alleopathic medicines and chemicals to keep their animals healthy. (Kind of an oxymoron, isn't it? :roll: )

There are a couple of commercially available herbal wormers. Check out these websites.

http://www.fiascofarm.com/herbs/index.html
http://www.7mfarm.com/
http://www.hoeggergoatsupply.com/

You can also make your own. There are lots of herbs that are natural dewormers. But herbs, even though they are natural, can have side effects and may be toxic under certain circumstances. So if you decide to make your own, be sure to do some reading. One well known book is "Complete Herbal Handbook for Farm and Stable" by Juliette De Bairacli-Levy. You can order it through Amazon.

I recently got a fantastic book (thanks Michael!) by Pat Colby called "Natural Goat Care". It covers a broad range of goat care topics and I highly recommend it . It's available through Acres USA (www.acresusa.com).

Of course, the bottom line is the health of your animals. You can (and should) have fecal samples analyzed periodically to assess the extent of parasites present (FYI, fecal samples only contain eggs, not the worms). You can have your vet do this or do it yourself. That is what I'm doing. It's not that I enjoy playing with my goats poop :wink: , but I want to be able to see whether the approaches I'm taking are helping to reduce worms.

If you have your vet do it, make sure he/she tells you specifically what types of worm eggs are present, not just that your goat needs to be wormed. You might also want to know how many of each type was observed. If you end up using chemical wormers, you will need this information to select one that will work.

I recently asked "an expert" (Sue Reith was the first person to teach goat owners how to analyze fecal samples themselves) how many "eggs" is too many. She said that it is all relative (my DH's favorite saying)! To assess whether a worm load is serious, you have to combine the data you get from the fecal sample with the data you get by observing your goats. In other words, is your goat exhibiting signs that are symptomatic of worm infestation? Things such as poor coat, poor appetite, under weight, coughing, bad skin condition, diarhea, etc. If so and your goat's fecies contain eggs from parasites that are associated with these problems, you should treat for worms. Even if the parasite egg count is low.

So, Banot, is this more than you ever wanted to know???? (Yikes!) Sorry to go on at such length, but internal parasites are the thing most likely to drive an otherwise "organic" goat person to use chemicals. I'm passionate about finding alternatives.

Best luck with your goats! Let me know if you have questions.
Marlyn


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PostPosted: Mon Aug 25, 2003 2:05 pm 
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Location: Buffalo (midway between Dallas and Houston)
Thanks for the reply, Doc! I have not tried DE; I wasn't sure if it would work for internal parisites. However, we will give it a try.

Marlyn, thank you for such an extensive reply! I will have to print it out and study it to get the most out of it.

Do you know about how much a vet charges to do a fecal study?

As we have a small herd right now (8 goats) and about 5 acres of pasture to go around, I don't think they'll have much of a problem from that source. (We have them in small, moveable pens and move them several times daily.) When they do get worms, it's probably from the hay we buy locally.

Again, thanks for the great replies!

banot


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PostPosted: Mon Aug 25, 2003 4:51 pm 
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Fecals generally cost anywhere from $10 to $15 per sample. Some folks take a sample or two from the herd and assume that all the goats will have the same parasites. Not sure that's always a good assumption.

Be sure to find a vet that is proficient in with goats or at least ruminents. Although the parasites are not exactly the same for all ruminents, there is some overlap and similarity. Horses, however, do not share the same parasites. Unfortunately, there aren't a lot of vets that know much about goats.

Are you seeing any signs of ill health in your herd?

Marlyn


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PostPosted: Tue Aug 26, 2003 3:11 pm 
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Location: Buffalo (midway between Dallas and Houston)
Marlyn,

Generally, our herd is in good physical condition. We do have one doe that is our "problem-child". We have to keep an eye on her or she will get scrawny on us and get diarrhea real bad--usually when her eyes are bigger than her stomach (and that's pretty big :o ! A goat's stomach can hold several gallons at a time.)

However, as we're still beginners (we're on our second year), I thought it would be wise to have a "course of action" already planned out...good philosophy, I think.

The vet in town deals quite a bit with horses and cows, I'm not sure how knowledgeable he is on goats :? , but I will try to find out.

Again, thank you for your time in helping me on this "research project".

banot


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PostPosted: Tue Aug 26, 2003 10:35 pm 
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Banot,

What type of goats do you have? Are yours for milk, meat or scrub control? Or maybe, just for the shear pleasure of having goats??? :D

You probably already know about this, but...re your problem child, has she gotten a CD/T shot? It's a immunization that is typically given to goats and it prevents tetanus (the T) and also "overeater's disease (the CD)? It's given a couple times when young and then once a year after that. I'm not an expert on this, but apparently when goats eat toooooo much and their rumen gets upset, they can come down with this overeaters disease which is often fatal. :cry: :cry:

Marlyn


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PostPosted: Wed Aug 27, 2003 6:21 pm 
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Location: Buffalo (midway between Dallas and Houston)
We have Nubians and just love them! We originally got them for their milk, but so far we haven't gotten much (most of them are still too young). So up to now they have been pets and versatile lawnmowers.

I imagine she has had this vaccination before we bought her, but we are pretty much opposed to vaccines, both human- and animal-grade, due to the many side-effects and the linkages to many neurological disorders. Our aim is to build up their immune systems and concentrate on preventative measures--the purpose of the original post!

banot


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PostPosted: Fri Aug 29, 2003 1:28 pm 
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Banot,

I totally understand your feelings about vacinations. I have very mixed feelings about them as well.

Aren't Nubians great! I have several friends with Nubians and they just love them to death. And they get great milk from their does.

You might want to do a fecal test on the one doe at least since she showing some signs of ill health (loss of weight and diarhea). See what her worm load looks like. The things I talked about in my first post (minerals, dairy yeast, herbal wormers, DE) are all holistic approaches to improving the health of your herd and should help to improve her health.

Have you checked out the Dairy Goat Forum on Homesteading Today? There are some very knowledgeable folks on it who I've learned alot from. But, I'll warn you - they tend to suggest chemical approaches to many symptoms that I hesitate to use. But even so, it is an excellent resource for learning about dairy goats. Also Fiasco Farm website has lots of great info about goats and they are less chemically dependent, if you know what I mean.

Glad to meet another goat owner. Best of luck with your herd!

Marlyn


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PostPosted: Fri Aug 29, 2003 4:21 pm 
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Banot,

Just found this link with what looks to be good info on controlling internal parasites in ruminants. It covers herbal wormers as well.

http://www.eap.mcgill.ca/AgroBio/ab370- ... MANAGEMENT

Marlyn


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PostPosted: Mon Sep 01, 2003 1:05 pm 
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Location: Buffalo (midway between Dallas and Houston)
Marlyn,

Thank you for all the great information! :lol: :lol: :lol: I am printing out all this information so that I can study and "digest" :D it properly!

I appreciate all the help you have given me on this research project...now all I have to do is sort it all out in my mind! I might write a paper on it and post it on my website: www.geocities.com/rjaxtell

banot

P.S. I originally found fiascofarm.com at least two years ago when we were first discussing getting some goats. I have found it to be very informative as well as showing a humane and natural approach to raising dairy goats.


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PostPosted: Sun Mar 21, 2004 11:32 pm 
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:D hello fellow goat owners, am very happy to see other goat owners trying alternatives to chemical wormers. I have recently been trying DE for parasite control. Help please. How much DE do you put in your goat's feed? I raise and show Nubians and Alpines. Also wanted to put my 2 cents in about the overeaters. I do not like to use chemical vaccines on my goats, but when they are very sick I will use LA 200 it seems very effective for me I hate penecilllin (sp?) it has never worked. I have saved many a sick animal with the LA 200. As for overeaters, it is a form of bloat and if you have every lost a goat to bloat, you will cry :cry: It is a very painful way for them to die. Their stomachs literally blow up inside. I do try to giver overeaters to my babies especially at them time of disbudding or banding because of the tetnus. I give my adult goats the shot once a year. The overeaters is not a total guarantee against them bloating, but it helps. Please do not ever put your goats out on fresh green pasture of anykind of they have not been on it previously. If you do turn them out on a fresh green pasture, give them plenty of hay to eat first and only let them out on the new pasture for a couple of hours at a time. I have had many friends that did not heed this advice and called me crying as their precious goats were dieing. It is always best to have a bottle of Therabloat on hand just in case the problem flares up, you have a very short time to treat before it is too late. I will be checking out the sites you recommended for the herbal wormers. 8) :D lots of happy goat raising to you all.


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PostPosted: Mon Mar 22, 2004 2:41 pm 
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Joel Salatin uses Shacklee's Basic H soap as a dewormer for his cattle. He mixes a few ounces per 100 gallons in the cattle's water trough and leaves it there for 48 hours to ensure they all get a drink.

Basic H is a natural, if not organic, product as I understand it.

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PostPosted: Fri May 21, 2004 8:00 am 
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Just read all info posted for deworming. Wonderful and interesting. We just started Sept 2003 with 7 goats. Now have 4 pregnant . 2 males are 8 weeks old and will be selling them soon. Thank you. Sharon Sandmann Whitesboro, Tx.


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