3 Month Old Lamb with Swollen Knees?

CassyKay

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We have a 3-month old dorper x katahdin ram-lamb that suddenly developed swollen knees this week.

We had a lamb with joint ill at a much younger age and we know that was due to a really difficult birth experience. This lamb is now much older, did not have a difficult birth, and has been very healthy and active.

He is still active, just a little slower than normal. The swelling just feels like fluids under the skin. None of the other lambs are having this issue. They are just being weaned/separated from the ewes, and are almost 100% pasture raised so not grain fed.

We gave him a selenium supplement a week ago but haven't seen any improvement. He also had a CD/T vaccine recently. Not sure if this could be a reaction to that?

Any ideas?

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rachels.haven

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I suspect it's going to ooze downward on the leg and abscess out. i had something like that happen to a goat kid this year on one ankle. Idk what it is though. We were negative again this year for CL, so I doubt it was that. I cleaned ours out for several days until it emptied and closed up. If it's the same thing you might want to do something similar. I suspect it's a kind of joint infection that the kid can function around (or for me it could always be a foreign body). Use your gloves.
 

Mini Horses

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Rickets? Calcium/phosphorous helps. Was he recently weaned?

Just throwing it out there. :idunno any swelling along rib cage?
 

CassyKay

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Rickets? Calcium/phosphorous helps. Was he recently weaned?

Just throwing it out there. :idunno any swelling along rib cage?
He has not been weaned yet. The only swelling is the knee joints.

Thanks for throwing the idea out there. So far what I've read about rickets in lambs is that it occurs when they are eating cereal grains (particularly oats) in the autumn, and is usually a calcium/phosphorous/vitamin D issue, and develops within the first two months. That has not been our situation. We contacted a vet, did some more research, and it seems mostly likely he has some kind of infection causing arthritis (inflammation) in the joints. So probably he will go on antibiotics and we'll see if he improves.
 

Ridgetop

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Rickets causes weakening of the bones due to calcium and protein lack in feeding. The bones actually will bend. The swollen joints are different.

The swelling may be due to some sort of infection. CAE is another cause of swollen and sore joints. Since the id s active and was jumping around, selenium lack is probably not the cause. Selenium deficiency cause weakness and inability to stand or walk well. ("Floppy kid/lamb syndrome")

Do you blood test all your goats annually for CAE? If not, you might want to start since infected goats do not always come down with the symptoms but just remain carriers. In addition, goats can pick up the infection off premises, through breeding, or if an infected animal which is supposed to be clean is brought in.

While drinking unpasteurized milk from nursing is the most common cause of the spread, other kids in the field can also pick it up if they lick milk from a kid that is nursing an infected doe, or steal milk from an infected doe.

Dairy kids are routinely removed from the mothers at birth and fed heat treated colostrum and pasteurized milk. Since you have Boers this won;t be practical for you. You need to blood test before kidding season. If you have a positive doe, cull her immediately.

If this is an infection, antibiotics would be the first way go to. Always dip the newborn's navel in iodine after birth to prevent joint ill.
 

CassyKay

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Rickets causes weakening of the bones due to calcium and protein lack in feeding. The bones actually will bend. The swollen joints are different.

The swelling may be due to some sort of infection. CAE is another cause of swollen and sore joints. Since the id s active and was jumping around, selenium lack is probably not the cause. Selenium deficiency cause weakness and inability to stand or walk well. ("Floppy kid/lamb syndrome")

Do you blood test all your goats annually for CAE? If not, you might want to start since infected goats do not always come down with the symptoms but just remain carriers. In addition, goats can pick up the infection off premises, through breeding, or if an infected animal which is supposed to be clean is brought in.

While drinking unpasteurized milk from nursing is the most common cause of the spread, other kids in the field can also pick it up if they lick milk from a kid that is nursing an infected doe, or steal milk from an infected doe.

Dairy kids are routinely removed from the mothers at birth and fed heat treated colostrum and pasteurized milk. Since you have Boers this won;t be practical for you. You need to blood test before kidding season. If you have a positive doe, cull her immediately.

If this is an infection, antibiotics would be the first way go to. Always dip the newborn's navel in iodine after birth to prevent joint ill.
We have sheep - dorpers and katahdins. It is one of our lambs that has the swollen knees.
I do believe our sheep tested clear for CAE as I remember this was something we talked to the shepherd about when we bought the ewes. The vet did not mention it but we can ask about it and see if he recommends testing. We are working to set up annual visits with our farm vet.
 

Ridgetop

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Sorry - thought this was goats. I have White Dorpers. I suggest you consider antibiotics for this condition. Sounds like he picked up some sort of infection. I dip my newborns' navels in iodine.
 

CassyKay

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Sorry - thought this was goats. I have White Dorpers. I suggest you consider antibiotics for this condition. Sounds like he picked up some sort of infection. I dip my newborns' navels in iodine.
Is it normal for infections picked up at birth to show up months later?
 

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