In this complete guide to worming goats (also called deworming goats), we answer the most common questions that farmers ask about the best wormers for goats, dosages, natural goat wormers, and much more!
Why Deworm Goats?
Goats are animals that are prone to the internal parasites. In parts of the world like the US, the stomach worm like Haemonchus Contortus (name of stomach worm), also known as “Barberpole worm” are the main concern.
This stomach worm will suck the blood of the goats, and if doesn’t get treatment, causes deficiency of blood and eventually death. The infection of the stomach worm reaches its peak in summer. In cold seasons, the stomach worm causes diarrhoea, ill thrift, and if untreated causes death.
Goats are the browsers like deer. They want to feed on the top down to guard themselves from the parasites. If the goats are enforced to browse grasses then there are chances that the goats may consume the stomach worms.
Goats are demanding eaters, and they like the newest and most nutritious plant material, i.e. the new growing grasses closest to the earth where there are worms.
The first line of defense against the internal parasites is the usage of the FAMACHA (a method to check the goats for the treatment against the internal parasites) field examination. However, this FAMACHA only handy for anaemia-producing infection. This FAMACHA will provide a method to observe the signs of anaemia (deficiency of blood) in the goats visually.
The producers can examine the eye membrane of the goat for the colouration. Red to pink membrane colour indicates a low worm-load. Pink-light pink membranes suggest further testing and de-worming. A whitish membrane means that the goat requires immediate treatment as it is fully loaded with worms.
FAMACHA can also point to anaemia that can be a result of liver flukes so that the farmers can take faecal samples from all healthy and infected goats for verification of worm-load.
How Often Do You Worm Goats?
The frequency of de-worming depends on the wetness or dryness of the area, population density in the pens and pastures, parturition time, overall health status of the goats, and a host of another thing. The number of goats that an owner can run on a given portion of land is not based on the available plant material but instead on how well the worm-load can be controlled.
The de-wormers should be used in minimum numbers of treatment to control the internal parasites. The overuse of the de-wormers will make the parasites resistant to the de-worming. However, a mixture of safe grazing and anthelmintic (de-worming medicines) dose should be used to control the worm’s infection.
Wormers should be changed yearly. Extended use of the same de-wormers enhances the development of worm’s resistance to that specific de-wormer. Too frequent de-wormer alternation can result in development of multiple de-wormer resistance.
As worming is unavoidable; therefore, knowing when to worm, increase the efficiency of the wormer and reduces the potential illness among the herd.
Best Wormer for Goats
There are three general classes of de-wormers and are Benzimidazoles, imidazothiazoles, and macrolides. The benzimidazoles are most often used for de-worming purposes. It includes wormers like Safeguard, Panacur, Valbazen etc. The imidazothiazoles include the de-wormers like levisol, tramisol etc. The third class of dewormers includes ivomec and moxidectin etc.
Safeguard Goat Wormer/ Panacur Goat Wormer
The active ingredient of this dewormer is “Fenbendazole.” It comes under the general class benzimidazoles. Fenbendazole is a general de-wormer that works against all the stomach worms, hookworms, whipworms etc. The recommended dose of safeguard goat wormer is 2.3mg/lb (5mg/kg). Under the condition of continued exposure to the internal parasite, retreatment may be required after 4-6 weeks. However, avoid administering in the goats within six days of slaughter. The withdrawal time in milk has not been established and avoids applying to lactating goats.
Ivermectin Goat Wormer/Ivomec Goat Wormer
Ivermectin de-wormers come under the macrolides that have further two subgroups. i.e. avermectins and milbemycin. The ivermectin is also a general dewormer and has had a wide margin for safety. The ivermectin has two notable distinctions, i.e. efficacy against external parasites and they have persistent activity. However, the resistance tends to be high among the avermectins. The dosage of ivermectin is 0.4 mg/kg orally.
Cydectin Goat Wormer
Cydectin also belong to macrolides dewormers. The cydentin is the only milbemycin in the macrolide dewormers. It is also a broad spectrum anthelminthic that can kill both external as well as the internal parasites. The cydectin goat wormers can kill the ivermectin-resistant worms. However, the infections may develop resistance to cydectin if overused due to its similarity to ivermectin.
The dosage of cydectin is 0.4mg/kg orally for a single dose. The meat withdrawal time for cydectin is 17 days and withdrawal time from milk is eight days. Higher doses of cydectin may require a longer withdrawal time.
Prohibit Goat Wormer
This de-wormer contains levamisole. The efficacy of this de-wormer is limited against larvae. This de-wormer has the narrowest margin of safety.
However, it is one of the most useful anthelmintics.
Valbazen Goat Wormer
Valbazen is a broad spectrum dewormer that contains albendazole as an active ingredient. This de-wormer is good against the liver flukes. The dosage of valbazen is 20mg/kg orally.
However, it is not a safe de-wormer during the 1st trimester of pregnancy.
Rumatel Goat Wormer
This de-wormer is also useful in the control and removing the stomach worms. The active ingredients are morantel tartrate.
How to Deworm Goats Naturally
Natural wormers are an excellent way to keep the goat free from parasites; especially the goats are for meat or dairy products. These natural de-wormers will prevent the goat from developing a resistance to the chemical wormers. Maintaining the goats on natural wormers and running regular faecal checks can be very useful.
Herbal Goat Wormer
Herbal wormers are one option to have a chemical-free deworming. Several herbal dewormers are available in the market for most kinds of farm animals. However, it is essential to monitor the animals when using herbal wormers for the signs of parasite infection by the use of a faecal worm egg test and the FAMACHA protocol.
Apple cider vinegar for worming goats
Apple cider works as an efficient worm remedy for the goats. It works because it enhances the alkaline levels of the guts, making it unwelcoming for parasites. Adding a teaspoon of organic ACV to the water each day will improve the hair coat state along with several other health advantages. Other benefits of ACV are more excellent milk production and reduced mastitis, to decreased urinary calculi in bucks, to increased doe kids of supplemented dams.
Essential oils for deworming goats
Essential oils play their role in deworming the goats from the infestation of worms. To prevent worm build-up from giving 1 tsp of diatomaceous earth at each feeding to the goats. Addition of water with clove oil and garlic oil available, as well as diluted apple cider vinegar is an option. The dosage of a few essential oils are: -
Garlic essential oil - 4 drops in a litre of water – for prevention
Clove essential oil - 2 drops in a litre of water - for prevention
Natural Goat Wormer Recipe
1Hollow out the pulp and seeds from a small to medium pumpkin.
2Make sure the pumpkins are hollowed out nicely to use as a serving bowl.
3Add the pulp and pumpkin seeds to a blender and blend on medium-high to break it down and chop it up.
4Add one whole head of garlic ( skin and all ) and two whole carrots.
5Drizzle on a few tablespoons of pure blackstrap molasses and blend well until everything is chopped up nicely.
6After the mixture is thoroughly mixed, scoop it into a bowl. Add a scoop of alfalfa pellets and a scoop of black oil sunflower seeds. Mix well with a spoon.
7Extra: Add some extra goodies; probiotics and array of herbals: the natural herbal dewormer, Fir Meadows LLC Gi Soother and Sea Kelp.
8Add the pumpkin mixture to the hollowed-out pumpkins, and there you have it! A nice Natural Dewormer treat for the goats!
Natural Goat Wormer Plants
Pumpkin seeds - a natural dewormer used for the goats is the usage of pumpkin seed as a natural de-wormer. Pumpkin seeds do have anti-parasite properties, but the amount a goat would need to combat parasites effectively is unrealistic. Pumpkin seeds are useful as a de-wormer due to the fact they are naturally coated in a chemical which causes paralysis in worms.
This allows for animals to dismiss the worms. This natural method can also be used to kill roundworms and tapeworms.
Diatomaceous earth - This is a soft, sedimentary rock that is simply crumbled into a beautiful white to off-white powder. Some farmers utilise this powder as an effective dewormer.
Tannin-rich plants set up in pastures, such as dock leaves, are also known to help lessen worms in the ruminant digestive tract. Tannin can be found in some other legume plants like peanuts, beans, peas, and chickpeas. It is also found in herbs such as cumin, vanilla, thyme, and cinnamon, while it is also found in most nuts and berries.
Goat Deworming Protocol
There are several protocols available for de-worming of the goats. There is a exclusive protocol that will help the reduction of the parasites in the animals themselves and the surroundings of the animals for the whole grazing period.
1Fall worming: as the grazing period ends, it is advisable to administer fenbendazole during morning. Divide the total dose over three days. On day four, give Cydectin pour-on at the suggested dose.
2Winter de-worming: perform a faecal examination in end of February or start of March. If the test result becomes positive then repeat the de-worming to ensure that the goats are not having worm eggs at the start of the grazing time.
Goat Wormer Dosage Chart – Goat Worming Schedule for Farmers
Goat Wormer Tractor Supply – Best Wormers to Buy from TractorSupply.com
Two of the best wormers that you can buy from TractorSupply.com are:
- Valbazen (Albendazole) Suspension Dewormer
- Safe-Guard Dewormer
Worming Pregnant Goats – What Every Farmer Needs to Know
Can You Worm a Pregnant Goat?
The stress of kidding, alteration from a milk-based feed to concentrate and forages, and accommodation of weaned goats in a new surroundings result in the reduced job of the immune system and put into the common health diseases. Parasites and respiratory illness are most often appear in young, kids until they reach to about one year of age.
De-worming pregnant female goats is essential to decrease the chance of transmitting internal parasites to the young goats. Gestating females should get the de-worming medicine 2-4 weeks before parturition; however, not all de-wormers are safe for pregnant females and care must be taken to choose a wormer that is secure to offer to lactating does
It is therefore essential to monitor the lactating goats closely fro the parasitic problems. Does may become wormy very quickly, and if they become severely infected, they may need to be dried up to recover.
The goats may become more infected in the summer season with barber pole worm that causes anaemia as well as depressed animal’s production and lead to bottle jaw disease. Infections will reduce the weight of the animals, and there will be a reduction in milk production too.
In winter, the goats may face the stress from brown stomach worms. These worms don’t cause anaemia but may cause bottle jaw disease in goats. There may be other worms too that causes diarrhoea, loss of appetite, reduced milk production, excessive weight loss.
Therefore, it is essential to select a de-wormer that is safe in pregnancy and doesn’t affect doe or the fetus. There are several broad-spectrum de-wormers, but the disadvantage of these de-wormers is that animal’s worm becomes resistant to them due to regular use.
Deworming Goats After Kidding
Once the doe gives birth, then she should be wormed the day again following the birth. It is essential to de-worm the female goat as the strain of kidding lower the resources of the female. These lower resources will make the female goat more vulnerable to the parasites and worm, and the hormones of kidding can stimulate parasites. The worms may be in the form of rice or the goat may become weak and thinner even having a proper diet.
When to Worm Baby Goats
Baby goats are more prone to tapeworm infection along with other parasites like other adult goats. Kids should initially get the worm treatment when they get eight weeks old. The kids may have the worming again every 1-2 months until the kids reach to one year of age. After that, they will have adult worming pattern for the entire life.