White Muscle Disease - Help!

misfitmorgan

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Hey guys, I had twins female goats born from a first timer. The size difference was huge on the kids, one was twice the size of the other. The smaller of the two is the problem child atm. She was ok and could walk for the first 2 days though she shook and was very weak, falling down a lot, her nursing was weak and she didnt drink more then 4oz at a time and it took her a little while to get it down. The evening of day 2 I realized something seemed off about her but she looked overall ok just small and didnt move around much. Morning of day 3 she was no longer getting up or walking at all, her ability to nurse was worse. I fed her as best as I could hoping ok maybe she is just having a rough start with life and needs a little extra time to figure things out. Evening of day 3 it was very clear something was very wrong, her mouth was cold, she was laying flat on her side and could not nurse at all.

I got her warmed up, looked up symptoms and WMD seems to fit. Went to TSC to get selenium/vit E paste and nutri-drench, gave her the labeled dose of both. It has now been almost 48hrs with very minor improvement. She can now scream her head off at me, and sit with her head up in a kush position, she can nurse a very tiny bit(I have been tube feeding her). But that seems to be it and everything I have read and seen says recovery should be pretty dang clear in 24hrs. I got up this morning to take her to the vet, I was told both vets are off and not available today and won't be back until May 3rd.

I know you don't like giving doses and off-label etc here but please please help me so this girl doesnt die. I need to know if I should be giving her more selenium/vit E or what to do. 48Hrs ago she got 23.2 mcg selenium and 200 IU vit E. Can anyone tell me what dose of Bo-Se is recommended for newborn/under 2 weeks?

I've never had Bo-Se and never had a kid or lamb with WMD so I know almost nothing about it. They all have free-choice loose minerals, the only thing I can figure is the dam just kept getting pushed off of everything by the others. BTW the Dam isnt doing to well either, retained placenta which she is on Pen G for and she also got selenium/Vit E gel with nutri-drench.
 

CLSranch

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Sorry Misfit, I've never heard of WMD. If the dam is poor it could've had a poor development while she was carrying. Again sorry I can't help.
 

Ridgetop

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Sorry to hear about this!

White Muscle Disease - WMD - is a lack of selenium resulting from lack of that essential mineral in hay or pasture. It is also known as Floppy Kid Syndrome and occurs in both goats and sheep. Although it is called a disease is is actually a mineral deficiency which is passed to the newborns from deficient mothers. Symptoms are extreme weakness, inability to walk, etc. just as @misfitmorgan described.

Now for your problem - You are correct, usually a dose of injectable selenium will get the kid up and seemingly recovered. The retained placenta should be reabsorbed since you have the doe on antibiotics. You could also try giving a small dose of injectable Vitamin B for the doe to perk her up. Kids and lambs with this disease need higher doses of selenium than are obtainable in the paste preparations. That is why vets use injectable selenium. I have the paste preps too, and the amount of selenium in a dose is not enough to work properly for floppy kids. They are mainly for use in animals to keep selenium levels up to normal.

It looks like you might have 2 problems here. Along with the selenium deficiency the small kid might have been slightly premature. Was the ginormous kid born first? Since the doe is a FF it's possible the larger kid was a hard birth and during its birth the smaller kid suffered loss of oxygen resulting in neurological problems.

Has this doe been blood tested for CAE? CAE can also cause premature birth and problems in the kids in worst early onset cases.

Now to obtain selenium in the absence of your vets - Injectable selenium is a prescription only drug. You need to be careful when you administer it during pregnancy because it it can damage the fetus in high doses and when given at the wrong time during pregnancy.

Are there any cattle dairies around you? If you know someone with a cow dairy, they might be able to sell you or give you a dose of selenium. They often have selenium and lutelyse on hand with prescriptions from their vet. You will have to investigate the dose of injectable selenium to use. I used to know the doses, but our soil here is high in selenium and I haven't had to use it for years.

Add glucose (Karo syrup) to the kid's formula or goat milk to encourage her to drink. Glucose will also give her extra energy and the sweet taste will encourage sucking. We had a lamb born with neurological problems after a hard lambing on a young ewe who was unknowingly bred before we bought her. The lamb couldn't stand or walk, but would nurse strongly at first from a bottle. His condition deteriorated over the next few days and his ceaseless call to his mother upset the LGDs. The ewe and lamb were in a jug but he couldn't get up and she couldn't get him up. We had to euthanize him. At this point it doesn't look too good for the kid, but if she pulls through the weekend have the vet out with injectable selenium.

With free choice minerals, there is no way to know if all members of the herd are getting the right amounts. Depending on the amount of selenium in your soil or the oil of the hayfields, You probably need to start giving all members of your herd doses of injectable selenium annually. We used to vaccinate prior to breeding. Depending on the mount of selenium in your hay you might need to do it more frequently. Talk to your vet. If you have a good relationship with him/her he/she may let you administer it yourself, saving a vet call charge.

I know this isn't the solution you were hoping for. Keeping animals is full of stress and sorrow, but hopefully the larger kid will remain healthy, the doe recover, and you will see them bouncing around soon.
 

misfitmorgan

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In 7 years this the first time we have seen WDM, I didnt think we were that low until I looked at the selenium map. We are 0.1-0.12ppm basically the lowest you can have.

Our herd is CAE Free, I am not sure which one was born. Neither was huge, the bigger one was normal kid size and the little one was about half that. Im just thinking the little one got robbed of a lot in the womb. I called the vets we normally use to ask for selenium even though the vets were not in, the nurse told me the vets were not available to ok it and if it is an emergency take them to another vet.
I could take her to another vet that is true, however I just cant afford it right this second as the other vet is 3 times the price because it's a dog/cat vets. They also know about zero on goats/lambs from past experience. When my little dog got poisoned I took her there for the vet to look at me and my dog...literally LOOK then tell me all they could do is put her down was $265. Same vet we took maggie the broken leg lamb to that cost over $850 for 2 visits.

I will just keep trying with her, thank you for the advice,
 

OneFineAcre

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We've given newborn nigerians 1/4 cc of BoSe. And then maybe another 1/4 cc the 2nd day afterwards.
We give our does 1cc about a month before they kid.
We did have a kid die once when it was about 3 days old and the necropsy indicated WMD. She was the smallest of quads.
 

farmerjan

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I would have said the same as @OneFineAcre for a dose. It is a fairly common thing here in this area. We use about 1 cc for baby calves... sometimes more, and/or sometimes more often. I try to use a high selenium mineral in this area....because we have a deficiency. I keep it on hand, and even if it goes out of date, it is better than nothing...
Hope you can get enough in it to save it so that you can at least get a bottle or a shot from the vet.
 

misfitmorgan

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I worked out the proper dose and gave her slightly under what a Bo-Se shot would be. I have good and bad news.

The selenium worked Saturday morning she was getting up and standing on her own. The bad news is the WMD was hiding another issue and she started showing signs of seizures within an hour of standing. The seizures did slow down after the first hour and went to just twitches which gave me hope. Sadly the little girl passed away saturday night from bloat we could not stop. The best theory we have is laying down for a week made her guts stop working right. We tried baking soda, bloat treatment and as a last ditch effort a sharps hub thru her last 2 ribs which relieved the pressure twice but it was just to late for her to recover.

To anyone reading this down the road, learn from our mistake. Get Bo-Se and have it on hand if you are in a low selenium area. I dont know that it would have saved her for sure but she would have had a better chance. Dont assume you are good on selnium like we did. We have had over 100 lambs and kids and in 7yrs this is the first time we have ever seen WMD.

This is a picture of my little girl a few days before we lost her.
 

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Baymule

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I’m sorry you lost her. We celebrate the births of our animals and grieve the losses. BYH is the best for advice and help when we are at a loss on what to do. When one of us learns, we all learn.

Big hugs, you tried your best.
 

misfitmorgan

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I’m sorry you lost her. We celebrate the births of our animals and grieve the losses. BYH is the best for advice and help when we are at a loss on what to do. When one of us learns, we all learn.

Big hugs, you tried your best.

Hugs Bay, Learning is good.
 
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