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USDA Rural Information Center

by Gary Pfalzbot
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Enterotoxemia is caused by the organism Clostridium Welchii and/or occasionally Clostridium Perfringens D and is characterized by a goat that is in misery and has diarrhea. As the disease progresses, the goat most often loses the use of its back legs. Enterotoxemia is often misdiagnosed because there is a common belief that giving a CD/T shot will prevent this condition from being probable. Both organisms that cause this condition are present in the rumen - especially when the goat is under nutritional stress from factors such as worms, transit, change in feed, etc. Younger goats are more likely to have enterotoxemia than older goats since older goats can develop a natural immunity. However, if conditions are favorable for the organism to thrive, nearly any goat regardless of age can contract enterotoxemia. Treatment for this condition must be immediate and will require supportive care. There is also a vaccination available for enterotoxemia.

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About the author: Gary Pfalzbot is a Service Connected Disabled Veteran and the web master of GoatWorld as well as some other web sites. He has raised goats over the years, been involved with 4-H (as a young boy) and currently resides in Colorado where he and his wife Pam raise a few breeds of goats and other animals, and primarily author the GoatWorld web site to continue to inform, educate, and promote the industry.


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