Deworming Basics for Goats: Ensuring Optimal Health and Productivity
Internal parasites pose a constant threat to the health and well-being of goats, affecting their growth, reproduction, and overall vitality. Deworming is a fundamental practice in goat management to control and prevent internal parasite infestations. In this guide, we’ll delve into the deworming basics for goats, covering key aspects such as types of parasites, deworming medications, strategic deworming, and best practices to ensure the optimal health of your herd.
Top Tips for Deworming Goats:
1. All dewormers are given orally. Not by back pouring or injection.
2. Do fecals counts monthly. Randomly choosing which goat to do a fecal on is fine. But always do a fecal on a goat that looks like they are showing signs of worms. Use of the McMaster slide is the best way to do a fecal egg count.
3. Use Famacha but do not solely rely on it. It doesn’t give the full picture of the worms that have just hatched and will soon be sucking blood.
4. Deworming your goats does not mean it worked. You have to check more fecals to SEE if it worked.
5. YOU can very easily learn how to do your own fecals.
6. Some dewormers do not work in certain areas anymore. Keep good records and make sure dewormers are working and stop using the ones that don’t.
7. Do not top dress dewormer or give feed-based dewormers. The goat who needs it will also be the weakest goat and the weakest goat will never get the amount they need because of the other pushy goats getting it first.
8. Never under-dose dewormer. Doing this allows the worms that survive to mutate, learning how to adapt to the dewormer and then the dewormer won’t work anymore.
9. You will use two different dewormers from two classes of dewormers when you worm your goats.
10. Use a drenching gun to get the dewormer to the very back of the tongue. This eliminates the possibility that the goat will spit it out and it will get the dewormer to the proper area of the rumen.
11. Goats in very wet, hot, humid climates will struggle with worms the most.
12. It can take years and patience to raise and develop your herd to be the most resistant to worms. It will take a lot of culling decisions and wise breeding choices but it can be done!
13. Understand that many vets are not well-versed in goat care.
14. Find a mentor who can help you understand goats and encourage you as you face all the ups and downs of goat ownership.
15. You will only raise the best herd possible if you keep the best possible records. You can’t know where you’re going if you don’t know where you’ve been.
These tips are only the beginning. You can read more about worming in this article: A guide to vaccinating and deworming goats. The best possible outcome for you is to keep all your deworming records in My Goat Binder and know what to give by reading My Parasite Control Plan. You can get them as a set and save on shipping: My Goat and Parasite Bundle.
Deworming is an essential component of goat health management, contributing to your herd’s overall well-being and productivity. By understanding the types of parasites, selecting appropriate deworming medications, and implementing strategic deworming practices, goat owners can effectively control internal parasites. Regular monitoring, targeted treatments, and diligent record-keeping form the foundation of a successful deworming program, ensuring a healthy and resilient goat enterprise. Collaborate with a veterinarian to tailor a deworming plan that aligns with the unique needs of your herd and geographic region.
You can get all of the information you need about goats right here: Raising Goats Resource Page.