Health issues in goat farms

Common health problem in goat farms and their identification

The main disease problems of goats, together with the likely causes of the problem are shown in the following table.  These tables should be used to diagnose the disease after making a physical examination or taking a case history. Often, if veterinarian staff makes irregular visits to a flock, they will usually miss seeing the sick goat, because it has either died or recovered. In this case, close questioning of the assistant/labor and members of the family can give a reasonable picture.

Spotting of sick animals

 Sick animal

























If a specific diagnosis of the disease cannot be made, indicating a specific treatment, the symptoms shown by the goat should be alleviated where possible. In addition, action should be taken to prevent the spread of the problem to other goats in the flock or to goats in neighboring flocks. Suggestions are made for the management of the disease problems described.

Health chart for goats in Indian condition


Sign and Symptoms

Coccidiosis Diarrhea, sometimes bloody. Sudden death may occur without diarrhea. Normally in housed goats.
Collibacilosis Dry mouth. Stomach full of gas. Fever. Quick death unless treated. Responds well to antibiotics.
Colostrum Deprivation Dry mouth. Fever. Severe weakness. Most die.
Enterotoxemia Sudden depression. Drunken appearance. Lies on side when close to death, paddling legs. May have watery diarrhea.
Internal parasites (Heamonchus/Strongyles) Sudden death. May have swelling under chin, anemia and weakness. Post mortem reveals parasites in  intestines. esp. Haemonchus contortus in abomasum.
Suffocation No physical signs or disease. Can occur if many kids and adults arc kept together, esp. in cold climates.
Malnutrition General Weakness.
PPR Deadly disease common in kids of age 4-8months. Die due to diarrhea and pneumonia.
CCPP Mucous discharge from nose, difficulty in breathing, die due to pneumonia
External Parasites Lice and mange sucks blood and cause anemia
Stress Due to over density of flock and transportation; responsible for many disease outbreak especially PPR and CCPP



Worms in Goat GI tract Adult goats may suffer from chronic diarrhea and weight loss or, in some cases, acute diarrhea. Predisposing factors include poor or unbalanced nutrition; dirty house or pen; lack of anthelmentic use: and lack of appropriate vaccination. Goats with acute diarrhea should have constant access to clean water and feed, and may be treated with oral or injectable antibiotics.

Respiratory Diseases are common in goats. Particularly in large flocks of housed goats with inadequate ventilation. Occasional  epidemic diseases such as contagious caprine pleuropneumonia  (CCPP) may occur in specific areas where the disease is endemic.

Predisposing factor include poor ventilation: large numbers or goats in close proximity: lack of appropriate vaccination: introduction of new goats into flock; or mixing at a watering place.

Respiratory problems are often highly infectious, so affected goats should immediately be separated from the rest or the flock and placed in a warm, dry, well-ventilated place.

Leave a comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *