for people who love the littlest dairy goats
I have a doe whose front knees are hyper-extended and I was hoping someone here could help me figure out why. I've had so many different opinions I'm not sure what to do and I'm ready to throw the kitchen sink at her. She had it mildly before pregnancy but only in her front left leg and I thought maybe she jumped off of something and landed on it funny. It continued to progress during pregnancy with the added weight (she's a first freshener). Her diet was peanut hay, coastal hay and alfalfa pellets during pregnancy and grain during the last week. She has access to Sweetlix Meat Maker, Selenium/E powder, Throvin Kelp and baking soda free choice. She gets 2 grams of COWP every 2 months (heavy sulfur in our area) and I also gave her 5cc of Replamin Gel Plus every 2 weeks.
Here are the different things I've been told by various other breeders and show judges:
Theory #1) Mineral deficiency (Copper or Selenium). I really don't think that's the case here, but can't afford to have her blood analyzed at the moment.
Theory #2) Calcium deficiency due to imbalance of calcium and phosphorus. Specifically too much calcium and not enough phosphorus which blocked her absorption of calcium and caused this. The suggestion was to switch her to a high phos mineral (1:1 cal/phos ratio) and splint her legs.
Theory #3) It's genetic and should probably be culled from the breeding program. Her sire has one hyper-extended knee but the breeder thought it was an injury. None of his other kids have had this issue.
I've been tirelessly trying to help her heal. I don't have access to a better mineral at the moment, I've tried splinting her legs (to no avail, she takes the splint off) I currently have her on some herbal Mixes from fir Meadows to support joint healing.
At this point I'm open to just about any suggestions.
After talking to a vet friend and some other people I decided to change management in the hopes to at least halt the damage. I regret not taking a "before" photo, but to give you an idea, if her upper leg was perpendicular to the ground her knee was hyperextended enough that sure was almost walking on her dew claws. After a month of new management I've seen a significant improvement. She's nearly straight again.
What I did:
Cut back on alfalfa and increased grass hay. The thought is that too much calcium (alfalfa) blocks zinc absorption.
Went through everything I was feeding and tweaked it to reduce calcium and increase phosphorus. So more BOSS and less kelp meal. I also stopped feeding a yeast mix that was high in calcium. I also added a small amount of zinc to her feed.
Switched from Sweetlix Meat Maker (2:1) to Magnum Milk (1:1).
For the Hail Mary I also added an electrolyte that had vitamin D, since a deficiency in that can cause joint issues.