In this complete guide to urinary calculi in goats, we answer the most common questions that farmers ask about this serious condition, including what it is, symptoms, treatments, and more.
What are Urinary Calculi in Goats?
It is a metabolic disease of male goats and it is also known as “Water belly disease of goats”. The occurrence of this disease happened when the stones made up of phosphate salts, stick in the urinary tract and stop the process of urination.
Generally, phosphorus gets recycled by the saliva of the goats and excreted through the feces. With the consumption of the low roughages, and high grains diet will reduce the saliva formation and thus result in the increased production of phosphorus that will excrete via urine.
The leading cause of the calculi is high concentrated diets that contain a high level of phosphorus and magnesium. There may be an imbalance of phosphorus and calcium. The water sources that contain high minerals and less access to water will play their role in developing calculi within the goats.
What are the Symptoms of Urinary Calculi in Goats?
The clinical signs and symptoms may vary. The animal may have anxiety and restlessness in the beginning. Then there will be some abdominal pain, along with the dribbling of the urine, distention and damage of the urethra. The goats will show less interest in the feed.
The belly of the goats will have edema of the abdomen and may have a humped-up look. The goats may kick the belly and face difficulty in urination. The urine may have some blood. The goats will start to separate themselves from the rest of the herd with an increase in the pain and discomfort level.
The goat will have a loud vocalization, and their tail will become twisted. The bladder may burst if the calculi remained untreated and it leads to the accumulation of urine in the abdomen.
Urinary Calculi in Goats Treatment - Main Treatments
The treatment of stones usually depends on the site of the obstruction, and it could be merely the snipping of the urethral process to permit the stones at the end of the penis to remove. Some antispasmodics (medicines that control the involuntary muscles contraction) and tranquilizers (medication to reduce tension) will help to remove the calculi naturally.
Ammonium chloride is one of the effective treatments for calculi cases in goats. Make a solution by mixing one teaspoon of ammonium chloride per 75 pounds of body weight with twenty ml of water and then drench the mixture to the goat. Repeat the drench after twelve hours and two consecutive days. The ammonium chloride may burn the throat. Therefore, it is necessary to use the stomach tube for the drench. Addition of any flavored juice will help to avoid the burning of the throat with ammonium chloride while drenching.
All the grains concentrates, green leaves, hay, and water should be taken off during the treatment. This removal of feed will not affect the goats as they are not interesting in feeding and drinking. Administration of any pain killers, like Banamine, will help to reduce the pain during the calculi disease. However, immediate veterinary assistance is required in calculi cases.
Home Remedies for Urinary Calculi in Goats
One of the most effective home remedies to treat the calculi or the stones in goats is by using ammonium chloride. Dissolving ammonium chloride one tablespoon in a couple of cup water and then drenching the solution orally to the goats will help to treat calculi. After the drench of ammonium chloride mixture, provide excessive water supply to the goat.
Another home remedy for treating calculi is adding a quarter of cranberry juice, and a quarter of red cedar vinegar to the above mixture. This addition of vinegar and juices to the ammonium chloride will help to gulp the drench down as it will have some taste. The dilution of the vinegar and juice can vary.
Natural Treatment for Urinary Calculi in Goats
The home treatment for calculi in goats is chopping the half onion and half garlic. Add the juice of three lemons, six garlic pods, and a half cup of vinegar in the chopped onion and garlic. Boil these ingredients in distilled water until both onion and garlic become translucent. Then blend the mixture until it becomes liquefied.
Divide the mixture into four parts and give one part on an immediate basis and the remaining three parts after twelve hours, twenty-four hours and forty-eight hours orally through the mouth. It is vital to give all the four parts to the goat even the goat appear better with the first dose.
How do you prevent it?
The critical factor in avoiding calculi in goats is by providing an adequate diet to the goats. If calculi are becoming a regular issue in the goats, then it is better to change the regimen of the food. Offer the goats with a free choice browsing and good quality hay to reduce the amount of grain concentrates.
Prevention is always better then cures. The best prevention of calculi is to provide goats with a diet that contain phosphorous and calcium in a ratio of 1: 2. The calcium and phosphorous ratio should not go below 1:1 in the feed. The higher level of calcium in the feed will reduce the phosphorous absorption from the gastrointestinal tract.
Prevent to add phosphorous and magnesium in the diet. The diet of the goats should have sufficient amount of vitamin A. Cereal grains like barley, corn, etc. have low phosphorous to calcium ration. This low ratio of calcium to phosphorous must get balanced by using other sources of minerals to make a balanced ration for the goats.
Make sure the goat consume an adequate amount of water to prevent the development of calculi. Less consumption of the water will make the urine more concentrated that cause the formation of stones more readily.
The water should be clean and must have an optimal temperature for the goats. Offering more salts will increase the water intake, and the salt in water is unlikeable to the goats. Thus the water consumption will become lesser. The diet containing ammonium chloride will help to keep the urine acidic and therefore, prevent the formation of calculi.