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In Reply to: kid with weak back legs posted by Cindy on November 03, 2001 at 19:36:25:
Hi Cindy and welcome the the Message Forum. I'm sorry to hear about your newborn buck having trouble so early. From what you wrote, it sounds like he may have not expelled all the fluid from his lungs and is developing pneumonia. There are a couple of things you can try but overall, if no one here on the Message Forum responds quickly enough, I'd go to the Goat 911 page and call someone close by in your area.
The fluid in the lungs has to be dealt with right away. I've had this happen on previous kiddings and what I was told was to hold the kid upside down and shake gently to try and get some of the fluid to come out.
You need to get the temperature of this young buck and pay close attention to where it is before trying to feed him. As a rule of thumb, anytime the rectal temperature of a goat is under 100, I won't try to feed or water because when the temperature drops, it can often signal that the "non-vital" organs are beginning to shut down. This would include the stomach. Any food or liquid that is administered will sit in the stomach and ferment, creating toxic bacteria.
Make sure you keep the kid warm and upright. If you can get the temperature up to the normal range (101 - 103.5), then I would try administering 15 cc's of Nutri-Drench every 4 hours or so. This will provide a boost of vitamins and minerals right away. The ID-1 is good, but usually in a situation such as this, it is not going to help all that much (at least my experience with it).
On the other hand, if the temperature is above normal, you want to bring the temperature back down to the normal range. It is in situations like this where a bag of LRS (Lactated Ringers) is needed along with Dextrose 50% solution. As the body temperature rises, the body fluids are depleted and these need to quickly be replaced with the LRS and Dextrose solution. I've given 60 cc's of LRS in each shoulder in situations like this and it has turned weak kids around. The Dextrose solution also gives them an energy boost as well and quite a few people use this with remarkable results.
The weak legs at birth are perhaps a sign of a weak kid, Floppy Kid Syndrome or goat polio though I'm pretty sure it would not be the last two - from what I understand, FKS and goat polio usually manifest themselves a little later than sooner. So we may be looking at a situation where this kid is weak simply because it was not getting the proper nutrients from the very beginning. It is common in any type of fraternal twin situation and in my opinion, is the downside of goats giving birth to twins and triplets.
If you can get him to drink fluids on his own, I would try some karo syrup, molasses and corn syrup mixed together. This will give some quick energy as well. Vitamin B or Thiamine may not be out of the question either. The main thing though at this point is temperature. Please try and provide us a specific temperature so we can know which end of the spectrum we are dealing with.
And again, if you feel that you need to, give any one of us a call on the Goat 911 page. Hoipefully you'll get a few more answers here as well.
Hope this is of some help.
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