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sick angora wither
5 years ago

My boy groucho was fine on thursday then friday am he did not even want to get up. I had to make him get up. Then he only ate 1 handfull of oats. He had been out on the grass and brush thursday along with the other goat and the horses. I took him to a vet and got no diagnosis, he did give him an antibiotic. Saturday morning I found him out in the drizzle and got him inside the barn by himself. I called the vet again and he gave me more antibiotics for him. My two goats live with a donkey and a horse. The horse has been acting up a lot this spring and I wondered if he might have been kicked, Callie, the other goat seems to be affraid of this horse now and I have moved her over with Groucho. Getting nowhere with the first vet I got another one to come out, he looked him over pretty good, and watched him too. He forse feed a gut stimulater down him and watched him some more. Groucho would hump his back and suck in just behind his ribs. This vet thinks he was kicked and it may just take time for him to heal. He is standing up and walks to me now to see what I have but won't even eat his favorite leaves now. They have not had alfalfa for a while now as he is over weight but I am thinking of getting some to see if he will eat that. I have been forcing water on him a few times a day as I have not seen him drink since sunday. Any ideas? I am supposed to call the vet if there is no change but since he is no worse I have put that off, as he was telling me I may have to put him down.

sick goat
5 years ago

I am just saying what I found with my goats. He is showing signs he is in pain. What is your doctor giving him anitibiotics for? You haven't said anything that would make me think he has an infection. I would be afraid of his rumen if he is not eating and now on antibiotics. When I can't get a goat to eat, I give them a beer. It has vitamins and the yeast will stimulate their rumen. I have tried a lot of medications and I have never had a goat take it so I use beer. It can be cold or a room temp. I can only say by what you have said it sounds like he was possible hurt by the horse and he is in pain. If the vet can not find broken bones your goat may need time to heal. I just know with my goats when they stop eating that's when the real problems start because their rumen gets messed up. When you put pressure on his body, is there a part that he seems to show pain in that area. Personally, I would watch him and keep his rumen up for awhile before giving up. If you can find the area that hurts maybe an x-ray would give you more information. I have had goats come to the farm after being kicked by a horse. All of them have had broken bones as well as soft tissue injuries. I do hope he's ok. Please let me know how he is. If there is any help I could give I surely would. I know this site and Sharon have helped me safe many animals here for me.

sick angora
5 years ago

Groucho is better today. I asked for help here because the 2 vets I had out were not helpful. I did try apple cider in his water and he drank small amounts of that, then he would not take any more. He has not been sheared, have had trouble getting getting the person who usually does that. All the fur may have cushioned the blow when the horse kicked him. I have felt no broken bones but he does seem sore on one side. The good news is that he is doing better today, eating again. I would never have thought of trying beer and will keep that in mind for the future. He is still taking it easy, staying inside and lying down a lot.

5 years ago

He is still not drinking or eating as he usually does so I tried the beer. He loved it! I went back just a few minutes ago to check on him and he got up to see if I brought anything for him. Thanks for the tip.

5 years ago

I do hope it helps.  All of my goats love beer and it normally gets them started back on eating and drinking.  Hopefully, he will start to get his rumen back and start eating.  Michele

Important....possibly urinary calculi
5 years ago

Sorry I didn't respond sooner but I had to work 2 shifts back to back.


Is he peeing ok?? Hunching the back is one sign of urinary calculi so you need to watch and make sure he is peeing and isn't uncomfortable or cries out in pain when he does pee. He should have a good urine stream. If he can't pee or is just dribbling he probably has urinary calculi which is the biggest thing to watch for in a wether. Urinary calculi (crystals) can block his urethra and you have to take immediate action to free up the calculi so he can pee or you will lose him. Read this article about calculi


Here is a link (Hoegger Goat Supply) to buy the ammonium chloride to help dissolve the crystals (calculi) if he isn't peeing and you think he may have urinary calculi.....first ask your vets if they have any ammonium chloride as time is of the essence if he has urinary calculi and you need to start him on it ASAP. IF they don't have it call the Hoegger company and they can overnight it to you. They can also tell you the dose. My goats will lick this right out of my hand....but if he won't eat it you may have to dissolve it and syringe it down his throat (with a turkey baster or a needleless syringe or feeding syringe) Here is the link to their catalog and ammonium chloride


Their number is on this page if you have to call for overnight delivery. Tell them the situation...that your goat has urinary calculi and you need the ammonium chloride right away.

Also make sure he gets plenty of fresh water even if you have to force it down him several times a day until he is drinking more on his own. The water helps to dilute the urine.


Ok if you determine he does not have urinary calculi (in other words you are CERTAIN he is peeing normally with a good strong stream) then....


You can also try giving him a slice of whole grain bread (not the white stuff) as bread, like beer has good yeast in it to help his rumen. Never give a goat raw active yeast (the kind that you use to make flour rise) as this can kill them. Only the kind that has already been baked like in bread or fermented as in beer.


your goat may not like yogurt, but yogurt (or kefir if you can get it) helps the rumen build up the good bacteria the antibiotics destroyed. So get some plain yogurt and be sure it says "active (or live) yogurt cultures" on the carton. The cultures have to ACTIVE or LIVE because if they were killed by heat or processing, dead cultures won't do any good. If your goat had no fever or infection I don't understand why a vet would give him antibiotics except because they are clueless about goats which is usually the case with most large or small animal vets.


To be honest your wether doesn't need grain (oats,corn,wheat etc) except a very small amount as a treat. Wethers and all goats for that matter do best on grass hays or grass/legume (like alfalfa or clover) mix hay and browse which is their natural diet.You don't see wild goats searching for grain....they browse and fresh weeds/forbes/brush is the best food for them. One of the biggest reasons wethers get urinary calculi is the result of eating too much grain....especially corn because of it's high phosphorus content. Don't worry about giving him the alfalfa right's better for him to eat that then the oats and it is much more important to get him to eat then to worry about him being fat. So if he will eat the alfalfa let him to his hearts content to eat all he wants for now. The rumen has to keep working because once it shuts down you can lose him.


Let us know about the urinary calculi....if you think he has it act fast!

Any news?
5 years ago is your baby Groucho doing? Can you update us on if he is better? Hope he is well on his way to feeling better.

5 years ago

He is doing fine now, back to his old self. i was worried at first that it was calculi, had not seen him pee. It had been cold and rainy and I could not tell from wet spots either. Both goats were unusually afraid of one of my horses that led to to believe he had been kicked. He seemed very sore and just wanted to lay around. He loved the beer, a good stout. After giving him that he would get up to see what I had when I went to check on him.
I try to limit their oats, when they were with the donkey and the horse I had to give them oats to keep them out of MAc's,(donkey) oats. He is very over weight and now that I have them seprate I am cutting way back on the oats.
i got such poor advice from the vets I called here, next time I have a problem I will come here first.