Nigerian Dwarf Dairy Goats

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I have a doe with very bad lice. Can I bathe her in flea and tick shampoo? Active ingredients are Piperonyl butoxide and pyrethrins


Shaving is not an option--I can go get Ivomec tomorrow but everything is closed today.

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A few more ??s


Do you inject the invermectin or put it on their skin? 

Is there a milk withdrawal?

Will my other two does get the lice?  We just brought this goat home, my other two goats are very healthy and this one is a mess.

I went to a goat parasite seminar last weekend and found out that there are two different types of lice found on goats, sucking and chewing. Sucking lice suck blood and chewing lice chew on hair and skin scales. I don't know how to tell the difference visually, I suspect you'd need a microscope. Ivermec comes in injectable, drench, and pour-on. Because the chewing lice don't suck blood, the injectable and drench won't kill them so you might as well go with a pour-on as it will kill both kinds. The bit of reading I've done suggests that no milk withdrawal has been established for the pour-on so I can't help you there. Someone else on this site or a vet might be able to tell you more. 

The other does may get the lice, you can treat preventatively, but if they were my goats I'd just keep an eye on them and treat if necessary. 

Ditto on everything Marin said, and if the goat isn't quarantined, it would be a good idea to keep her separate from your other goats. A lot of people worry about spreading disease, but "little" things like worms and lice can wind up being a big headache, so it's a good idea to keep new goats separated even if it came from a herd that tested free from all diseases.

If this goat is a milker, Eprinex has zero milk withdrawal.

Well, for better or worse we bathed her in the flea shampoo that says it kills lice, too.  (Hubby was just adamant and sometimes I can't change his mind) I believe these are sucking lice based on looking at internet pics and also I can easily see that they are full of blood.  She is mostly white and when you thumb through her hair you can just see thousands of these red specks that on closer inspection are little white bodies full of blood.


She is anemic and very thin.  She is supposed to be a milker but it looks like she has already dried herself off. 


The herd she came from is tested, and the owner is a vet--although I'm not sure what to think about her selling me this goat.  Shouldn't she have noticed how badly infested this goat was?  Or do you have a few slip through the cracks when you have 30 goats?


I don't know if she is anemic from the lice or from internal parasites so I dewormed her, too.  Also gave her a dose of red cell and will again this morning. 


I'm sure quarantining would have been the smart thing to do but they'd already been together 24 hrs when we saw the lice and I really only have the one area of the barn set up for overnight protection from predators, any pasture I could get her away from the does she would be too near the bucks...obviously I am not set up to quarantine lol.  Have bought all my goats from this same woman and they all came home healthy.


Since I gave her the ivermectin paste dewormer should I not use ivermectin to treat the lice or is it okay?

It is rather surprising that a vet would sell you a goat infested with lice. It's not hard to treat. Sounds like you're doing everything you can. If she's really anemic but early in her lactation, she might rebound a little if you can get her treated for whatever is causing the anemia (internal and/or external parasites). Have you tried milking her? When you say you used ivermectin paste, do you mean a horse dewormer? I'm not sure on the dosage for that, but I know that back when goat people had to use Safeguard for horses, most would triple or quadruple the dosage, so if you used a horse dewormer at the horse dosage for ivermectin, it might not be enough to do much good. Ivermectin is normally given at 2X the sheep or cattle dosage.

I gave her ivermectin horse paste.  I've used it before with good results.  I did triple their bodyweight-


I have been milking her since I've had her.  She has just a tiny amount in there, so I figured it wouldn't be too much of a strain on her body to make it.  She kidded about two weeks ago and the seller said they would milk her for me in the interim but it sounds like they didn't really do it every day.


Anyway, the somewhat good news is that last night was the first night I had to stop giving her food even though she watned more.  Before now her apetite was in the dumps, too and I was like begging her to please eat some grain.  Also she was chowing on the hay when I left last night and night before last she just laid down next to the hay and went to sleep.  So I am crossing my fingers that since we knocked back all the bugs she is feeling better.


Last night we did the eprinex pour on- we did it to all three females since the other two have been in close quarters with this one we figured better do them now so the bugs never take hold.  I did not do the boys but they are across the farm and do not share a fenceline with the girls.  I don't know how far these little critters can travel.  I have plenty more eprinex if you think I should do the boys, too.


The seller did apologize for not noticing the goat had lice-- hubby is like I can't believe you paid for this goat.  Next to our goats who are sleek and shiny it is profound. In seller's defense I couldn't tell how thin she was until I petted her because her hair is kind of long and somewhat hides the bones.  Then of course my rescue syndrome kicked in and I had to take her because she looked so pitiful and I wanted to help her.  at any rate, I am not sorry I did it.  She is the twin sister to my other doe who has turned out to be an EXCELLENT milker.  According to seller this goat is great too, which if I believe will be true next year, so...


If you could have seen her little face when we were bathing her in the stock tank.  She was gazing up at my husband like "thank you, mister!"  Didn't realize goats could be grateful, but I am telling you...  (sorry for the rambling)

what about trying Diatomatious Earth? Use it was a powder/dust. It cuts thru the insects shells and they dehydrated and die... keeps ticks under control as well. I use it on my chickens, works great!

Hi Claudette,

Do you know if it is safe to use Diatomatious Earth when you are milking and drinking the milk from this goat?

And how exactly do you apply? Do you have to get it everywhere on the goat. I have seen them in the area above and behind the "arm pit", or elbow. They are brown and long and seem to be mostly on the hair shaft.

Claudette E Griffith said:

what about trying Diatomatious Earth? Use it was a powder/dust. It cuts thru the insects shells and they dehydrated and die... keeps ticks under control as well. I use it on my chickens, works great!

Tammy, I don't think you'll get a reply from that old post from 2 years ago (lol) but I thought I'd help out with an answer. You can put the DE into the foot of a panty hose or thin socks and tie it off, then just rub it on the goats wherever you need to. It doesn't cloud them with dust that way (or you). The danger with DE is inhaling it so you want to keep the dust down. Other than that it is harmless to them and you. They can lick it and it will not hurt them at all. So yes, you can milk with no worries. Keep in mind that it can dry their skin though so watch for that-- probably only if used long term because mine never got dry skin from using it. 

Thank you! I know when I've had an issue about anything before ive been told to check the forum so thats what I did. Thanks for responding! Im going bbigail try this.
If it is warm enough where you are, you can just clip the goat as you would for a show. (Size 10 blade on dog clippers) Without hair, the lice fall off the goat and die.
I just found lice all over one of my new nigerian does (she is one of 2 Nigerians we got from the same woman, our 3 mini nubians came from a different breeder) her herd mate doesn't seem to have many if any. I'm going to use diatomaceous earth all over her and on my others as a precaution to prevent it from spreading. Julia, the panty hose idea is brilliant... Thanks for sharing!! I think I may clip her as well, although she may be chilly at night (still in the upper 40's to mid 50's at night)? This doe also has "off" flavored milk at almost one month into her first freshening. I've already seriously considering getting rid of her, to be honest, but I'm sure I should give her some time to prove herself and grow on me.

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