Our Story- Parasites!
Wingin' it Farms had never seen a mite or lice on any of our goats, nor had any signs or symptoms of such... until... June 2012!
Our partner Straw Hat Kikos acquired three does for his Kiko herd. The three does, two of which were seasoned kidders with excellent kidding / weaning stats were coming from a large herd that was being reduced to the family's shift toward cattle. Together we went to see the does and look them over. The does were all in good shape with two recently kidding, one being under conditioned due to having triplets with extremely high wean weights which was understandable. The examinations went well and the does came to the Wingin'it Farms / Straw Hat Kikos home several weeks later.
The Does in Quarantine
While in Quarantine we noticed something we'd missed...... an ear! Not the whole ear. LOL The nasty gunk in the ear. We immediately called in a vet. Skin scrapings were taken and we cleaned the ear with ear wash. A secondary infection was going strong. She was given 2.25ml of oxytetracycline IM and a 2nd dose 72 hours later. We waited for the results of the skin scraping. The doe had Psoroptes cuniculi ! We swabed the ear in and around with permethrins. We did this several days in a row and repeated in 10 days! All gone. It certainly explained why her head was titling to one side and the ear drooped.
"ear mites" with secondary infection
As if the ear issue wasn't bad enough, the next day we noticed huge lice on one of the other does! Yep... we had missed it on the initial exam AND the vet had also missed them! We were devastated... we'd never had a mite or lice EVER! As we ran through all the emotions and were highly frustrated and upset we knew all we could do was treat them and move on. So began the treatment... we decided to shave all 3 does so we could really get a thorough de-lousing!
There was no way we could handle it if the lice began to spread. We were so glad for our quarantine protocol!
Left- one doe shaved on one side-
look closely and you can see the lice on the shaved part.
Right- halfway done! All the way down!
The 3 does were all treated with the permethrins 10%- mixed accordingly and applied with a low pressure sprayer ( pump style pressure garden sprayer). Every inch of the goat was reached using this method. On the face we used cotton balls and applied around horns, muzzle, and ears. We were thankful this happened in the summer, no chance of getting chilled!
We retreated two weeks later and the girls condition really improved!
While the does were in quarantine we ran fecal checks and determined one of the girls really needed to be dewormed.
It took a few months but all the girls gained weight and looked fantastic!
We share this story for two reasons. One, we made it through! Two, the does came from a farm where they really were well cared for and there was no neglect. It was a large farm! We learned from this experience. Knowing the breeder and communicating with her we realized that sometimes things like this can happen and it really doesn't mean animals are neglected or are not being monitored. Lice and mites can happen- it is that simple! Having a good quarantine program worked!
Here are those same girls with some of their offspring ten months later.