Saturday, February 13, 2010

My Nose Has Bumps!

We were out feeding our goats this morning and I noticed something strange with Bella's nose. She just didn't look right. Their stall doesn't have lights on during the day so I wasn't sure what was wrong. There was something definitely wrong. We love to spend time with our animals. This shared time is always a good time to look closely, observe for any changes. We lift tiny hooves looking for any lodged foreign matter like rocks or small stones. We look at poop. Is it normal for goats? Little pellets or diarrhea? Are there changes in the texture of the coat? Is there a runny nose? Is someone coughing? I kiss my goats. They kiss me back. I love goatie kisses. So when I noticed that Bella's little goat nose had some bumps on it, I took a closer look. These bumps are not normal. We were immediately concerned. We looked through a couple of reference books on goats. We searched for anything that would cause the bumps. Nothing we read fit. We called Janice Spaulding from Stony Knolls Farm. We went to Goat School there and bought Isabella and Carina from their farm. Janice and Ken are a wealth of information. They have been raising goats since 1989. After exchanging info over they phone one possibility is that Bella had contacted stinging nettles in the dried hay.

Janice said to see if there were any thorns in the bumps. There was a small amount of pus in the bumps but we couldn't find any thorns. Bella was not happy with our treatment. Alex had to hold her to prevent her from bolting.

As you can see they were rather large bumps. Not much bleeding.

Next we were told to clean the area with Regular Listerine Mouthwash. We had this on hand as an antiseptic for the animals, again items we gathered goat after school. After reading about Listerine I found out that it was originally formulated in 1879 as a surgical antiseptic by Dr. Joseph Lawrence. It was named after Dr. Joseph Lister, the pioneer of antiseptic surgery. It was later sold as a mouthwash in 1914. This information was compliments of Wikipedia.

We cleansed the area with sterile gauze dipped in Listerine. Bella was even less impressed with us. I'm sure that it stung on the open sores.

We will continue to keep a close eye for any signs of infection or any problems that come up. We aren't opposed to taking her to the vet. However, we are trying to learn how to manage as many issues as possible at home. Each episode is a learning experience for us. The upcoming kidding and lambing season with be another learning experience. We strive to be good shepards. It is wonderful having such patient animals to work with. We are thankful for our friends and mentors for their aid. Last winter we kept asking Peggy from Hidden Haven, and Bev from Bee Haven Acres chicken questions. This year we feel more equipped to deal with problems as they come up. Our animals are healthier and happier and we feel the reward of keeping them safe and healthy. Thank you to everyone who has sent advise. Keep warm and safe. Much love and prayers from Mainely Ewes Farm.


Fearless Nester said...

You're such good goat Mommies! Oh and everytime I see your banner picture it seems like I always notice something new about it...I've meant to tell you before that I love that picture, it so captures the beauty of rural Maine and I love the color in the sky. ~Lili

Melodie said...

Awww, poor girl! that last picture looks like she is hiding her nose in the hay! Can't say as I blame her! Ouch!

katiegirl said...

You gals are doing a great job! It's easy to see you're doing a good job raising them. They all look happy, healthy, and well cared for!

LindaSueBuhl said...

Many of our goats get "raw" places on their noses when eating from large round bales - they are so energetic in pursuit of just the right mouthful - they literally scrape off flesh. Glad you got a quick answer and did such a thorough job - we have never had a vet here for the goats - financially not reasonable for our animals. You learn to do things you didn't know you wanted to learn - and healthy animals are the reward!

Callie said...

My daughter took a look at the photos and said she thought it looked like goat pox. You can do a google search or image search. She had dairy goats and wondered if your goats were exposed to any new goats or people who have goats that could carry the pox? We only had problems with our dairy goats catching stuff when we took them to shows or petting fairs. We finally decided to just keep them home.

Hope it is nettles and not pox.

HissyFits said...

I'm a fellow Mainer....."following" you now.
I really like your blog.
You are welcome to visit mine. I just moved it(again).


Ken and Mary Berry of Fancyfibers Farm said...

I wonder what caused those bumps? I'd like to commend you on the obvious care and concern you show your critters. It's a sign that you're quality folks (IMHO). I've been reading your blog for a few weeks now and enjoy the updates. My DW and I are trying to master our own steep learning curve when it comes to out goats, sheep, alpaca, and hens. Ken and Mary Berry of Fancyfibers Farm, Texas

Farm Chick Paula said...

Awww.... poor little thing!! Hope you can find out the problem... hope it's nothing serious.
Isn't it wonderful to be able to spend enough time with your animals to see the first sign of trouble- it shows you are a good caretaker to all your critters!

Terri and Randy Carlson said...

Interestsing, about the listerine. I'll have to try that. Did you look up orf (soremouth)? Be careful, it's contageous! Hopefully your girl is doing better and it's not spreading.