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I was shocked to see this on my doeling. Her dam was born here and she is 5th generation on my farm. Her sire was also born here and he is 3rd generation. 

No issues with teats from any that Ive bred. I have plenty of relatives and never an inkling that double teat would occur.

She has a full brother that is fine. Should he be wethered since his sister has it?

These are unregistered but her dam is one of my best milkers. 

Thanks!!

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Teat defects can hide for generations. But I'm convinced that copper (or maybe selenium) deficiency can bring them out. The first few years we had goats, we had teat defects EVERY year! We also had severe copper deficiency and borderline selenium deficiency. Once the nutritional deficiencies were eliminated, the teat defects disappeared.

In the last 14  years or so, we have only had one teat defect, and her great great great grandmother Star was a goat that threw more teat defects than any other goat. In fact, Star's son jumped the fence and bred her, and she had quads with two or three of them having teat defects. Her registration number was 1000-something, so some of her grandparents were committee-registered meaning that we have no idea what was in her pedigree beyond that. She was my best milker in the early years and had the best teats. She is also the matriarch of  my absolute favorite line of milkers. They have the rare combination of excellent parasite resistance AND excellent production. 

There is a goat in your doeling's background that was not registered most likely because she had a teat defect. It's not surprising to see things like this popping up in unregistered goats. I always say that no one is going to sell a goat for $50 or $100 if they could get several hundred for them. And reputable breeders know that a teat defect is a DQ, so they aren't going to sell a goat with a teat defect with papers because they don't want their herd name associated with it. Unregistered goats are like a box of chocolates. You never know what you're going to get.

A teat defect is really not a big deal in the grand scheme of things. But you don't know how functional the extra teats are. She will make a wonderful pet for someone. Just make sure they know that she shouldn't be bred. She might be okay, but why risk it. 

I would wether the brother and NOT repeat the breeding between the parents. And I wouldn't breed that buck to any does that are related to the doeling's dam just to be safe in case they're also carrying a gene for extra teats. If you just look at the meat goat world, it's obvious that they are genetic because when you don't select against them, you see them like crazy! I also used to see them in my Shetland sheep and even in one of my Irish dexter cows. Again, none of those breeders care about extra teats because they are not dairy animals. Teat defects can make milking difficult by hand or even impossible with a machine, depending on where the extra teat is or if it's a fishtail teat.

The buck has already sold and none of his other kids from my breeding or other breedings have the defect. The new buck owner was going to buy this dam but we cancelled that to prevent it from appearing again. This is the dams 2nd freshening. Should she be bred again to different buck or sold as a pet? I love her udders!! 

Thanks for all that info too. I was pulling my hair out trying to figure out what/how this happened.

Deborah Niemann-Boehle said:

Teat defects can hide for generations. But I'm convinced that copper (or maybe selenium) deficiency can bring them out. The first few years we had goats, we had teat defects EVERY year! We also had severe copper deficiency and borderline selenium deficiency. Once the nutritional deficiencies were eliminated, the teat defects disappeared.

In the last 14  years or so, we have only had one teat defect, and her great great great grandmother Star was a goat that threw more teat defects than any other goat. In fact, Star's son jumped the fence and bred her, and she had quads with two or three of them having teat defects. Her registration number was 1000-something, so some of her grandparents were committee-registered meaning that we have no idea what was in her pedigree beyond that. She was my best milker in the early years and had the best teats. She is also the matriarch of  my absolute favorite line of milkers. They have the rare combination of excellent parasite resistance AND excellent production. 

There is a goat in your doeling's background that was not registered most likely because she had a teat defect. It's not surprising to see things like this popping up in unregistered goats. I always say that no one is going to sell a goat for $50 or $100 if they could get several hundred for them. And reputable breeders know that a teat defect is a DQ, so they aren't going to sell a goat with a teat defect with papers because they don't want their herd name associated with it. Unregistered goats are like a box of chocolates. You never know what you're going to get.

A teat defect is really not a big deal in the grand scheme of things. But you don't know how functional the extra teats are. She will make a wonderful pet for someone. Just make sure they know that she shouldn't be bred. She might be okay, but why risk it. 

I would wether the brother and NOT repeat the breeding between the parents. And I wouldn't breed that buck to any does that are related to the doeling's dam just to be safe in case they're also carrying a gene for extra teats. If you just look at the meat goat world, it's obvious that they are genetic because when you don't select against them, you see them like crazy! I also used to see them in my Shetland sheep and even in one of my Irish dexter cows. Again, none of those breeders care about extra teats because they are not dairy animals. Teat defects can make milking difficult by hand or even impossible with a machine, depending on where the extra teat is or if it's a fishtail teat.

Hopefully if she is bred to different bucks you won't see any more teat defects from her. The genetics for teat defects in dairy goats is pretty rare since people breed against that. 

Okay, I'm freaking out about my goats now. I have a doeling that looks like she has a bump at the base of her teat. Shes about 9 weeks old. It wasn't there last time i trimmed hooves, maybe 2 weeks ago. 

This makes a third instance with teat issues. The 2 kids are from different dams and sires. All 3 are from unrelated lines.

This doeling is registered.

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That does look like an extra teat. It's super small, so you could have easily missed it when she was younger. 

If you find some really old posts on here about teat defects, I talk about how many teats defect we had before I knew we had a problem with severe copper and borderline selenium deficiency. We had multiple teat defects some years and in all unrelated does. So, in addition to genetics, which is the most common cause for teat defects, I do think there can be a nutritional issue, which I have never heard anyone else talk about. Since we took care of our mineral deficiencies, we have only had two does born with teat defects. So that's something like 10 teat defects in less than 5 years versus 2 teat defects in 15 years. 

I know you've been around for awhile. Have you read all of my mineral information? Exactly what mineral are you using? Do you have sulfur or iron in your well water?

Yes, I have been reading up on the posts. Ive been using Purina goat mineral almost exclusively for 11 years. I try new ones occasionally but always go back. I give copper bolus when I see symptoms of deficiency. I supplement with Selenium E gel, every month or two. I don't have a well, so im on county water supply. 

This is very strange that you've been using the same mineral for so long and now this has happened -- with known genetics. Purina increased the amount of copper in their minerals and reduced the salt about three years ago, meaning that your goats should not have an issue with copper deficiency now.

The selenium-E gel is a waste of money because there is so little selenium in it that you could give a whole tube to your goat, and it wouldn't hurt them. It wouldn't help them either. I've been doing the math on that stuff for years and scratching my head because it's such a small amount, and when I interviewed Dr. VanSaun on my podcast about selenium last year, he confirmed that there isn't enough selenium in there to help a goat. 

But if you've been doing this for 11 years and never had any problems until now ... it doesn't sound like it could be anything nutritional IF you have not changed anything. Did you change goat feed or start buying hay from a new farmer or anything else? 

It may be worth it to do a micronutrient profile on your herd. Just to see where you stand. It will not give you an accurate copper level, but will let you know where you stand with selenium. I was shocked at how low my animals were on zinc. 
The selenium gel has such a teeny tiny amount of selenium that it really isn’t effective at correcting deficiencies. 
Tammy

That's a great suggestion, Tammy! 

My hay provider seems to change every season, but its coastal/bermuda round bales. 

Tammy, I did read there is a blood test you can do for selenium but ill have to figure out where to send it, who does it. 

This spot near her udder was red this morning, looking more like maybe a fire ant bite! Its still hot here in Texas. Im watching it for changes and crossing my fingers! 

I forgot, I did change my feed mix a little. I was unable to get black eyed peas during Covid so I omitted them. First change in feed mix. 

Deborah Niemann-Boehle said:

This is very strange that you've been using the same mineral for so long and now this has happened -- with known genetics. Purina increased the amount of copper in their minerals and reduced the salt about three years ago, meaning that your goats should not have an issue with copper deficiency now.

The selenium-E gel is a waste of money because there is so little selenium in it that you could give a whole tube to your goat, and it wouldn't hurt them. It wouldn't help them either. I've been doing the math on that stuff for years and scratching my head because it's such a small amount, and when I interviewed Dr. VanSaun on my podcast about selenium last year, he confirmed that there isn't enough selenium in there to help a goat. 

But if you've been doing this for 11 years and never had any problems until now ... it doesn't sound like it could be anything nutritional IF you have not changed anything. Did you change goat feed or start buying hay from a new farmer or anything else? 

I run my trace mineral panels through TVMDL (Texas A&M)

I saw that you also responded to Deborah’s question about diet change- what does your feed mix consist of?

Would be great if that is indeed an insect bite. It is truly odd to see so many teat defects between unrelated lines.

Tammy 

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