Skip to Content

Giving Injections to Goats: A Comprehensive Guide

Administering Injections to Goats: A Comprehensive Guide

Providing injections to goats, whether intramuscular (IM) or subcutaneous (SQ), is a crucial aspect of their healthcare. Proper technique ensures the safety and well-being of the goats while maximizing the effectiveness of the medications. In this comprehensive guide, we’ll explore the best practices for giving injections to goats, covering both IM and SQ methods.

Learn how to give injections to goats

Materials Needed:

  1. Needles and Syringes:
    • Choose the appropriate needle gauge and length for the injection type and goat size.
    • Disposable, sterile needles and syringes are essential.
  2. Alcohol or Antiseptic Solution:
    • Ensure a clean injection site by swabbing with alcohol or an antiseptic solution.
  3. Cotton Balls or Swabs:
    • Use these to apply gentle pressure after injection, reducing the risk of leakage. You will rub the injection site before and after the shot to help reduce the chance of a lump forming and also helps lesson the sting that might accompany a shot. 
  4. Gloves:
    • Depending on what you’re treating, you may want to consider wearing disposable gloves to maintain hygiene and protect against potential contamination.
  5. Epinephrine:
    • It’s always wise to have epinephrine on hand when giving medications of any kind. This would be for that just in case scenario where the goat had a severe reaction to the medication and needed prompt attention to combat the reaction. Not too often, but occasionally a goat will go into shock after an injection and you have very little time to help the goat. Having this on hand will be a life saver, so be prepared. Pay attention to the expiration dates. You will give 1cc per 100 pounds. 

Intramuscular (IM) Injections:

  1. Selecting the Injection Site:
    • Common IM sites include the neck, thigh, or shoulder muscles. The best place is the large muscle in the thigh. There is a possibility of hitting a major blood vessel in the neck and shoulder. 
    • Choose a site with adequate muscle mass and avoid major blood vessels.
  2. Restraint:
    • Secure the goat in a safe and comfortable restraint to minimize stress.
    • A helper can assist in holding the goat still during the injection.
  3. Preparing the Injection:
    • Draw the medication into the syringe, eliminating air bubbles.
    • Ensure the correct dosage according to veterinary instructions or dosage found in My Goat Binder.
  4. Administering the Injection:
    • Rub the area where the needle will go in.
    • Insert the needle at a 90-degree angle into the selected muscle.
    • Inject the medication slowly and steadily, avoiding rapid administration.
  5. Aftercare:
    • Withdraw the needle smoothly.
    • Apply gentle pressure with a cotton ball or swab to minimize bleeding. Rub the area to help lesson the stinging that usually accompanies thick medications and the CD/T shot as it’s released into the muscle. 


*We get commissions for purchases made through links in this post. As an Amazon associate, I earn from qualifying purchases. Click here for more info about cookies collected and our privacy policy.

Subcutaneous (SQ) Injections:

  1. Selecting the Injection Site:
    • Common SQ sites include the loose skin over the neck, behind the elbow, or in the flank area.
    • Pinch the skin to create a tent-like area for injection.
  2. Restraint:
    • Secure the goat in a comfortable position, ensuring minimal movement.
    • A helper can assist in holding the goat still during the injection.
  3. Preparing the Injection:
    • Draw the medication into the syringe, ensuring accurate dosage.
    • Eliminate air bubbles to maintain precision.
  4. Administering the Injection:
    • Insert the needle at a 45-degree angle under the skin in the tented area. Be careful not to hit the muscle. 
    • Inject the medication slowly, allowing the skin to absorb the liquid.
  5. Aftercare:
    • Withdraw the needle smoothly.
    • Rub the area to prevent a knot from forming. 
    • Apply gentle pressure with a cotton ball or swab to prevent leakage.

Best Practices for Safety and Accuracy:

  1. Practice Good Hygiene:
    • Wash hands thoroughly before handling medications or administering injections.
    • If needed, wear disposable gloves to prevent contamination.
  2. Rotate Injection Sites:
    • Alternate injection sites to prevent tissue damage and ensure optimal medication absorption. If giving large doses, split it up into several syringes and give in separate areas.
  3. Check Needle Size:
    • Choose the needle size based on the goat’s size and the injection type.
    • Consult with a veterinarian for specific recommendations.
  4. Dispose of Needles Safely:
    • Use a puncture-proof container for safe disposal of used needles and syringes.
    • Follow local regulations for medical waste disposal.
  5. Seek Professional Guidance:
    • Consult with a veterinarian for training on proper injection techniques.
    • Ensure you understand the specific requirements for each medication.

Best Sizes of Needles and Syringes to Have on Hand:

Always have a handle of needles and syringes on hand. You don’t want to be searching for one and not have it when you need it and can’t buy one easily. 

  • Needles: 
    • Get needles that are 22-gauge and 3/4″ long for injections.
    • You can use 18-gauge needles to draw up the thick liquids like, Ivomec 1%, Tylan 200, LA-200, and Nuflor. 
    • There are two types of syringes: Luer-lock, where the needle twists into the syringe, and the Luer-slip, where the needle just slips into the syringe. If giving thick medications, like Nuflor, Tylan 200, or LA-200, the Luer-lock is helpful so that the needle doesn’t blow off the syringe as it’s given. 
  • Syringes:
    • You’ll most likely use 3cc syringes for most medications you give. 
    • 1 cc syringes are great for medication kids. 
    • 6 cc and 12 cc will be used for oral drenching.
    • A 60 cc syringe will be used to attach to a weak kid feeding tube. There are two types of 60 cc syringes: one can be attached to a needle and one can be attached to the tube. Having both on hand is a good idea, in case you need to connect to the feeding tube but one that attaches to the needle can be used if you need to help rehydrate a kid subcutaneously. 

By following these best practices, goat owners can confidently and safely administer injections to their goats, contributing to the overall health and well-being of their herd. Always consult with a veterinarian for guidance on medication selection, dosage, and proper injection techniques tailored to the specific needs of individual goats.

There is a ton more to learn about goats: Raising Goats Resource Page

I accept the Privacy Policy