Case Description—A 2-month-old female Nigerian Dwarf goat was evaluated for a generalized crusting dermatitis; signs of depression; and fever of 1 month's duration.
Clinical Findings—Histologic evaluation of skin biopsy specimens revealed subcorneal pustules and rafts of acantholytic cells. No etiologic agents were detected in the biopsy material, and bacterial culture of skin biopsy specimens yielded no growth of pathological organisms. A diagnosis of pemphigus foliaceus was made.
Treatment and Outcome—Remission was achieved with a combination of SC administration of dexamethasone and IM administration of gold sodium thiomalate. The goat remained free of clinical signs for at least 26 months after discontinuation of all medications. No clinically apparent adverse effects of treatment were evident.
Clinical Relevance—This report represents the first description of successful treatment of juvenile pemphigus foliaceus in a goat by use of a novel protocol involving dexamethasone and gold sodium thiomalate.
Objective—To determine whether dietary supplementation with ammonium chloride would affect urine pH or urinary fractional excretion (FE) of electrolytes in goats fed grass hay.
Animals—15 yearling castrated male goats.
Procedures—In the dose response study, 3 yearling goats fed orchard grass hay and water ad libitum were administered ammonium chloride at either 200, 400, or 500 mg/kg (91, 182, or 227 mg/lb), PO, every 24 hours. In the FE study, 8 goats fed orchard grass hay were randomly divided into either a treatment (n = 4) or a control group (4). In the treatment group, ammonium chloride was administered at 450 mg/kg (2.25% of dry matter intake [DMI]), PO, every 24 hours for 8 days. The FE of electrolytes was compared between groups; FE measurements were also determined for 4 client-owned goats fed alfalfa hay.
Results—Ammonium chloride administered at 450 mg/kg (2.25% of DMI) achieved and maintained urine pH < 6.5 for 24 hours. Goats fed orchard grass hay with ammonium chloride supplementation had significantly higher FE of calcium and chloride than did goats fed orchard grass hay without supplemental ammonium chloride.
Conclusions and Clinical Relevance—Dietary ammonium chloride supplementation at a dose of 450 mg/kg may be necessary to achieve a urine pH < 6.5 in goats. Further studies of ammonium chloride supplementation and urolithiasis in goats fed low-calcium diets are indicated.
Case Description—A closed herd of 400 mixed-breed dairy goats was examined because of a decrease in milk production and increase in mortality rate. Nine animals had died within a 1-month period.
Clinical Findings—Clinical signs were evident only in lactating goats and included anorexia and recumbency. In the most severely affected goats, signs progressed to neurologic abnormalities and death. Serum aspartate aminotransferase activity, γ-glutamyltransferase activity, and total bilirubin concentration were high in clinically affected does, but no evidence of hemolysis was found. A diagnosis of copper toxicosis was made on the basis of high liver and kidney copper concentrations and histologic evidence of hepatic necrosis. Goats were found to have been fed a mineral mix containing 3,050 ppm copper for 9 months prior to the onset of copper toxicosis. Overall, there was no consistent relationship between serum hepatic enzyme activities, serum copper concentration, and liver copper concentration.
Treatment and Outcome—Clinically affected goats were treated with penicillamine, ammonium molybdate, sodium thiosulfate, and vitamin E. Penicillamine increased urine copper excretion in treated does versus untreated control animals. An increased incidence of infectious disease was identified in the herd 9 months later. Liver vitamin E concentration was low in 10 of the 12 goats that underwent necropsy.
Clinical Relevance—Findings suggested that penicillamine may be an effective treatment for goats with copper toxicosis. Production losses months after the diagnosis was made suggested that the intoxication had a prolonged animal welfare and economic impacts.