December 11, 2010

Some Not So Good News About Jasmine

Sweet Jasmine
I was very much alarmed the other day, when I noticed scabs on one of Jasmine's teats. I took a closer look and saw that the right side of her udder was hard, had scabs, and one weeping sore. I hadn't paid a whole lot of attention to her udder since I stopped milking her in September. Her appetite had been excellent, and her behavior hadn't changed. Still, I felt very much ashamed that I hadn't noticed this immediately. The teat wasn't hot to touch, fortunately. The next morning I took her to the vet.

He said it was definitely infected, and prescribed Benzillin injections every other day for a total of four doses. The bad news is that there was some necrosis of the tissue. He said this would slough off, but that the teat would probably seal itself off in the healing process. If this happens, it means she won't be able to be milked on this side. He went so far as to suggest that if I was planning to cull any animals, she would be a candidate.

This leads to the question about the reason I got Petey. Is she pregnant? I never saw that she was all that interested in him, but that doesn't mean anything. Petey likely goes to a new home in the next couple of days, which is probably just as well.

Well, I'm neither ready to cull her nor give up hope. For the time being I'm going to give her the antiobiotic and use an herbal salve we learned about from HEAL Marketplace called "Bone, Flesh & Cartilage." It contains white oak bark, comfrey, mullein, marshmallow root, black walnut hulls, gravel root, wormwood, skullcap, and lobelia. It definitely won't hurt and I have every reason to believe it will help. Only time will tell.

Jasmine, happy to be home from the vet's.


  1. Ohhhhh, so sorry to hear about Jasmine!

  2. Boy, does that bring back my home. Mother was religious about massaging goat teats after milking with Bag Balm, which is now a trendy hand treatment. We were a chewing gum and bailing wire small farm, no nickles to spare. I suspect Mom had an emotional investment too.

  3. Thats no good Leigh, hope Jasmine makes a full recovery for her sake.

    Lots of TLC needed...

  4. wow! Any ideas how she was injured? I hope you're able to get her all fixed up. poor Jasmine.

  5. Thanks Heidi.

    Sharon, I remember doing that with bag balm as well. I'm sure your Mom had a tremendous emotional investment in it all! It's hard not too when so much has to be put into their care. It's hard to keep a balance actually, and not make pets out of everything. Like your folks, we can't afford to keep animals just for fun. We have some time before we have to make that decision though. Fortunately.

    Tania, me too! The prognosis isn't set in stone, but I'm glad the vet gave me the worst possibility. At least we have a plan and at least there's still some hope.

    Renee, no idea. And I didn't think to ask about how to prevent it. THe vet did say something like this can develop pretty quickly, so that made me feel a little better.

    Her previous owner was drying her up when I got her. He had been milking her every 3 days or so to decrease milk supply. Then I read it's better just to stop altogether, so I stopped milking. Not sure if there's a connection. Something to research.

  6. poor baby! I've heard about the Bag Balm being used also, to stop mastitis when drying up milking does. I hope she heals quickly and easily.

  7. Yes, bag balm is a staple in just about any barn, even those that don't have milkers.
    Sorry about Jasmine, hope she makes a full recovery and is useful. I don't envy you at all that decision.
    I couldn't do it. Maybe one sweet pet so your not tempted by the others as pets????:
    That's a slippery slope I know. Whatever you do it will be right for you! :)

  8. How sad! I hope she gets better. Poor little thing.

  9. Oh, I'm so sorry, Leigh. I hope she heals up real fast! And I hope she's pregnant!!

  10. I'm so sorry to hear about Jasmine but since you don't need to cull just yet there is always hope and no harm in trying something else.

    Good luck!

  11. So sorry to hear about Jasmine. Hope she recovers well.

  12. Nature is a funny thing. She may heal back to normal. I am pulling for her full recovery.

  13. Awe, sorry! She just might not want to be a mama and if she would have lil ones, you can always give them the colostrum and bottle fed all will be good! Glad to see about the herbal product....great stuff! Sending you all love and healing!

    P.S. Jasmine is such a beauty and don't feel bad about not noticing it....this has happened to me before and everything happens the way it is suppose too!

  14. You are right to not give up on Jasmine yet. I wonder if having a kid on her might even help that affected teat if and when she kids? With you TLC, I'm sure she'll have every chance to heal completely. Goats have come through worse difficulties. Jasmine looks a lot like a big, red Nubian named Debra we used to have.

  15. So sorry to hear about Jasmine! I have used high doses of garlic cloves administered with a bolus. I had a goat I purchased that I didn't know she had mastitus and she got really bad and I gave her garlic and a week later she was a total different goat and turned into a really good milker. Good luck with her and your decision.

  16. Nina, as you can well imagine, it's on my shopping list!

    Theresa thanks. Not so sure about the pet part. Yet anyway. There's still time though because the prognosis isn't written and stone, plus even if she were 100% healthy we'e be pressing on as we are now. We're both realizing the reality of this lifestyle and the decisions have to be made. We'll just cross that bridge if we come to it.

    Heather, Lynn, & Barb, thanks!

    Cesar, thanks for visiting and commenting. I see you're a fairly new blogger so welcome to the blogosphere!

    Jane, I have every confidence in that very thing. The body was created with an amazing capacity for self-healing, as long as it has the "ingredients" to do so! I'm just hoping we can provide her with that.

    Pam, thank you! I thought about bottle feeding her kid/s if she is pregnant, if I needed to. There is still time for healing though.

    Mama Pea, that may be. She's otherwise healthy so that's in her favor. Lots of TLC is the route for now.

    Alla, bolus! Thank you! This morning Dan and I were talking about giving her garlic but I couldn't figure out how. I know how to get garlic down a cat, but not a goat. A bolus is absolutely the answer. Thank you!

  17. that's sad - if she was pregnant and had a kid, would she still be able to feed it - from one side? or would not using the one teat mean, that it would make more problems? I hope you can cure her, it would be sad to loose her like that:((

  18. Bettina, I have no idea. The vet was fairly certain of this, but as Jane pointed out, nature doesn't always do the expected. I'll just treat her and then wait and see. If she does kid but can't feed it, then I'll have to either resort to a milk replacer or use all of Surprise's for both kids (assuming Surprise is pregnant.) I still have hope though, so will press on with that.

  19. Mastitis is difficult (assuming that is what she has...). I've ewes with suckling lambs get it, ewes that were drying out (I usually just pulled the lambs, reduced their feed quantity/quality, and called it good), and who knows why...

    What I do know, is that the cow mastitis treatments do help, as does milking out the affected side - every day, twice a day, if not more. Infusing the udder with the treatment is not hard, though traumatic (for the human female), and massaging it through the udder is crucial.

    I wouldn't be so quick to cull her. If she produces 2 kids, they can likely learn to share one side, should this side not return to functionality. I have had ewes successfully nurse two lambs with a half a bag. You may have to supplement the kids with a bottle, but that's just too much fun!!

    Bag balm, bengay - anything that will stimulate the blood flow to the udder helps, as does the massaging. The more often you can do it, the better off she will be.

    Working with an infected udder is also something that requires strict sanitation - don't even think about touching the other goats after working with Jasmine. Ideally, you should isolate her, as the infection will be spread to the ground where she lies down. I don't remember how long it remains viable, but it's important that once they are all milking, that she be a) clean, and not infectious, or b) isolated. You must wash your hands and all the equipment that you milk her out/wash her udder, etc. with a sterilizing wash. Email me privately for a list of things that work.

    Sorry - I'm rambling!! She will be ok - and will probably be a good producer for you, even if she only has half a bag.


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