Monday, March 26, 2012

Meeting notes 3/25/12: CAE Prevention

CAE Prevention
By Donna Pearce : 3/25/12

CAE is Caprine Arthritis Encephalitis virus. It is a retrovirus that effects goats and spreads through the milk from infected dams to uninfected kids. 80% of goats are suspected of being infected. It is very common in dairy goats. Boer goats are starting to show infection due to being crossed to dairy goats. The virus doesn’t affect humans at all. 

Symptoms of CAE are neurological problems in kids under 1 month old. Older goats get big, arthritic front knees and rock hard udders at freshening. It can take up to a week to get the udder to soften enough to get milk from it. 

CAE is spread through the milk mainly. It is suspected of being spread through licking. It may be sexually transmitted. Infected goats that are showing advanced symptoms of CAE may be able to spread it to other goats through casual contact and sharing of equipment and goat supplies. 

The best way to test for CAE is a blood test sent to WADDL (Washington State Animal Disease Diagnostic Lab). The test is about $6 per sample. WADDL is the most accurate lab for CAE testing. It is best to test once a year because the test is only good on the day it was taken. A goat could test negative for a while before it finally tests positive. Never assume your herd is completely negative without testing negative animals regularly. 

To prevent CAE from spreading, tape the teats of goats that are going to kid so the babies can’t nurse if you aren’t present to keep them from nursing. Only one suck of raw milk can infect a kid for life! Pull the kids from the doe at birth and do not let her lick the babies. Clean the babies and bottle feed them heat treated goat colostrum or raw cow colostrum from a Johnes-free cow herd.

To heat treat colostrum, take an insulated thermos and fill it with water that is 145F. Be sure to test the thermos before using it for colostrum to make sure the thermos can hold a steady temperature for one hour. Slowly heat up your fresh colostrum on the stove in a double boiler. Heat the colostrum to 137F. DO NOT LET COLOSTRUM GET HOTTER THAN 140F!! If it gets too hot, colostrum will congeal to a thick pudding that is not useable. You will have to throw it out and start over. Be sure to stay with the colostrum to carefully watch that it does not overheat. Once the colostrum is 137F, pour the hot water out of the thermos through the funnel you will use to put the colostrum into the thermos. Preheating the funnel will help to keep the temperature of the colostrum at the right degree as you transfer it into the thermos. Once your preheated thermos and funnel are ready, pour the 137F colostrum into the thermos. Wipe the inside of the thermos with a clean towel so no extra colostrum is around the edges. Seal the thermos and leave it for one hour. 

The goal is to have all of your colostrum at the same temperature for one hour. Any colostrum that does not hold the 137F temperature for one hour could carry the CAE virus and infect any kids you feed. Be very careful to clean any raw colostrum off of your milking equipment and keep it away from your heat-treated colostrum. Once the colostrum is heat treated, it can be fed immediately to the kids or frozen for up to one year. 

Heat treating colostrum can take a while to do so don’t be worried that the kids will not get their first colostrum feeding for over one hour. If the kids are good and strong at birth, they will not suffer if they do not get colostrum right away while you are heat treating it. Do not tube feed healthy kids if they won’t eat at first. Tube feeding is only for very weak kids or premature kids. Once you put the tube down the kid, put the other end of the tube in a glass of water. If bubbles come out of the tube then the tube is in the lungs and not in the stomach. Pull the tube immediately and reposition it into the stomach. Do not force milk through the tube. Let the milk flow by gravity from the syringe into the goat. Once the goat has received one or two ounces of milk, pinch the tube tightly and whip it quickly out of the kid. If you don’t pinch the tube, the milk can spill out while pulling the tube and go into the lungs. Whipping the tube out quickly will also help keep milk out of the lungs.
To pasteurize regular goat milk, heat it to 180F in a double boiler. Remove it from heat immediately and keep it separate from any raw milk. Be sure to keep raw milk and any utensils used on raw milk separate so as not to contaminate the pasteurized milk. 

Be sure to check your thermometers regularly so they are reading the correct temperature. Be sure to check your thermos that it is keeping a steady temperature for one hour.

Friday, March 16, 2012

Biosecurity Toolkit

This toolkit was created for horses but is certainly applicable to goats:

The Equine Herpes Virus-1 outbreak, associated with the Western National Cutting Horse Event in Ogden, UT in May 2011, increased awareness and need for biosecurity measures at equine events. During the outbreak, the California Department of Food and Agriculture, Animal Health Branch (CDFA AHB), received numerous inquiries and requests for guidance for keeping horses healthy at equine events from the equine industry stakeholders in the state.

The California Equine Medication Monitoring Program (EMMP) Advisory Committee represents a broad range of equine disciplines regulated by the program and is responsible for addressing concerns of the equine industry. With more than 1600 shows a year that register with the program, the need for biosecurity outreach was evident. Based on limited available biosecurity resources, the CDFA AHB received a formal request for development of a toolkit for equine events from the California EMMP Advisory Committee.
Biosecurity is a set of preventive measures designed to reduce the risks for introduction and transmission of an infectious disease agent. Infectious disease pathogens may be brought to and spread at an event premises by horses, people, domestic animals other than horses, vehicles, equipment, insects, ticks, birds, wildlife including rodents, feed, waste and water. Implementation of an equine event biosecurity plan will minimize or prevent the movement of diseases and pests on and off the event premises. Development and implementation of an equine event biosecurity plan is an essential responsibility of the equine event manager that is critical to protecting the equine industry.

The objective of this biosecurity toolkit is to provide equine event managers with resources to recognize potential disease risks at the event venue and develop a biosecurity and infectious disease control plan to protect the health of the competition/exhibition horses and the equine population. Each event and venue is unique; therefore, the toolkit provides guidance for the assessment and development of event-specific plans that address the specific identified disease risks of the event and venue.

For more information:

Texas A&M Researchers Create Goat With Malaria Vaccine In Her Milk

Over at the Texas A&M Reproductive Sciences Complex, you'll find several animals with unique capabilities.
Goat number 21 is one of those creatures.

"This project is one of the most interesting that we've been involved with because it has so much potential world wide," said Texas A&M researcher Charles Long.

Long & fellow A&M researcher Mark Westhusin keep a careful eye on goat number 21 because her milk holds a vaccine for malaria.

"There are lots of different things that one can think about producing in the milk. Malaria vaccine is one that's really important because there's a big demand for it in a lot of impoverished countries," said Westhusin.
Through genetic engineering, this goat could be the golden goose when it comes to preventing malaria in third world countries. A disease that kills a child in Africa every minute according to the World Health Organization.

"What you'd have is an animal that could be in any village around the world and all natives would have to do is drink some of that milk and be immunized against malaria," said Long.

But before any of that happens, this goat has to jump through a lot of hoops.

"We'd love to start air dropping goats into Africa but the reality is we're not going to be able to achieve that objective for another five or 10 years at least," joked Long.

"What we have to do is milk the goat, purify the protein, then we'd have to do all kinds of clinical testing and safety testing. Just like as if we were to take any drug and go to market with it," said Westhusin.

Step number one will be waiting for this motherly goat to give birth, which will happen in the next week. That's when testing on the milk will intensify and the offspring checked to see if they carry on the gene that carries on the vaccine.

"That's when we get to start to collect this milk, storing the milk to extract out the antigen that will become the vaccine," said Long. 

It's estimated that malaria kills between 650,000 and 1.2 million people every year.

Researches at the Veterinary Physiology and Pharmacology Department are also working on animals that are more disease resistant, more feed efficient, and produce milk that produces lower fat. 

Article from: Shane McAuliffe March 8, 2012

Friday, March 9, 2012

Johnes Vaccine on the Horizon

 From the Colliers:

Here is another “of interest” link for goat owners. Johnes is a devastating disease to goat owners that we, Janet and I, have dealt with and fought for many years, it is another disease that I think should be addressed at a meeting some time. At this point it is incurable as well as untreatable; not enough research has been done due to budgets constraint, interest, etc, and this article shows some promise of developing a vaccine in the foreseeable future. Many goat producers are never aware that this is a problem in their herd or are really not willing to admit it, if they even do know. Some people think the animal has just died of old age. The word “Johnes” is a naughty word in the goat community. In a cattle herd it is usually a highly devastating disease which shows symptoms quickly and leads to the destruction of the entire herd. In goats, Johnes may lay dormant for up to ten or more years and it may never show clinical signs. Johnes if present in an animal can be triggered by some stressor; like another disease or an injury that may cause a compromised immune system, if diagnosed it is suggested that the herd is also destroyed to eradicate it, other steps must also be taken. In small closed herds it is usually not a problem. Please read this article it is a good one.

Friday, March 2, 2012

Next Meeting 3/25/12 - Peru, NY

The ADK Goat Club will have a meeting on Sunday, March 25, 2012 at 12pm in Peru, NY. The meeting will feature a potluck lunch. Please bring a dish to pass. The topic of the meeting will be "CAE Prevention". Please call Rose at 518-891-8401 for more information.