Stocking a goat first aid kit will help you be more prepared for an emergency, illness or injury. Here’s what we keep in our goat first aid kit!

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A couple weeks ago, I posted about the wonderful new method that we discovered to store our (non-refrigerated) animal first aid supplies. After that, I received a lot of questions from people who wanted to know exactly what we kept on hand in each our first aid kits.

Let me preface this by saying that I am in no way a veterinary expert nor will my first aid kits ever be “complete”. Our first aid kits are rather fluid because I constantly change my mind based on new research and techniques, or I will find products that work better for our animals.

I would also caution people about keeping products on hand that they don’t know how to use or don’t feel comfortable using. This is especially true regarding antibiotic and wormers which animals can easily develop resistance to… but that’s another topic for another time. Bottom line: it’s okay to keep things on hand that you aren’t experienced with, BUT please consult someone who is very knowledgeable before administering. Administering without a plan or full understanding of side-effects, long-term repercussions or how a product works is never a good idea.

Additional bottom line, now that I think about it: You don’t have to be an expert to own animals. What you do need to do is to be committed to educating yourself and willing to constantly continue learning. Nothing makes you more humble about your knowledge than a sick animal! The more you learn, the more you realize how very little you actually know! Surprisingly, a lot of vets are also in the dark about how to treat goats! I would be very hesitant to blindly trust a vet without ensuring that they have studied and understand the complicated physiology and treatment of goats. This is why it is vital to have a knowledgeable goat mentor!

All that being said, preparing for an emergency before it happens is always, always a smart thing to do! Do your research, reach out to as many knowledgeable professionals in the field as you can, and start getting prepared!

Also, I have to warn you that I am in no way prescribing or diagnosing! Again, I am not an expert! This is purely informational content to share with you what we keep on hand, so please don’t sue me.

Wheh! Now that that’s out of the way…. let’s talk about what I keep in our goat first aid kit! It takes a while to build up your kit and you will learn as you go! In order to stay organized, I keep an on-going list of my supplies on my Medical Supply Inventory List in my Animal Management Binder (get your free copy). Below are the primary items I am currently keeping on hand.

Stocking a first aid kit will help you be more prepared for a goat emergency, illness or injury. Here's what we keep in our goat first aid kit!

Basic First Aid Supplies for Your Goat First Aid Kit:

  • Thermometers (I keep 2-3 on hand because you can never find them when you need them!)
  • Disposable gloves
  • Scissors
  • Needles (22 g, 20 g & 18 g)
  • Syringes (3 cc, 6 cc, 10 cc, 20 cc)
  • Red top tubes
  • Vet Wrap
  • Maxi pads (I prefer these over gauze pads because they are easy to use and very absorbent)
  • Triple Antibiotic Ointment
  • Vetricyn Spray (buy it here)
  • Providone Iodine Scrub or Betadine or Chlorhexidine Scrub (FYI: I don’t think any of these are technically approved for food-producing animals so be aware there may be withdrawal times)
  • 7% Iodine Solution or spray
  • Antibiotic eye ointment
  • Drench Gun and Tubing (1 – 1 1/2 inch works well for adult goats)
  • Weight Tape
  • Scalpels
  • Blood stop powder, yarrow leaf or cornstarch
  • Liquid Benadryl
  • Mastitis Test Strips
  • Heat lamp or other heat source (for warming a chilled goat)
  • Notepad & pen
  • Headlamp or flashlight
  • Vet and goat mentor’s phone numbers
  • Printed quick reference dosage charts (I have included some links below to helpful dosage charts/listings that you can print out. Again, always consult your vet and/or goat mentor before dosing!)

Stocking a first aid kit will help you be more prepared for a goat emergency, illness or injury. Here's what we keep in our goat first aid kit!

Must haves whether you do CD&T vaccination or not:

  • CD Antitoxin
  • Tetanus Antitoxin
    Note: These antitoxins are not the same as the CD&T vaccine – vaccines are labeled as “toxoids”, so be sure you order the correct ones. Toxoids (vaccines) are given preventative once a year. Antitoxins are given if/when an issue arises and may be the key to saving your animal if they go down with suspected tetanus or enterotoxemia (over-eating disease). I order both of these from Jeffer’s Supply. They are not cheap and you will need to pay for overnight shipping so they stay cool. However, the price is very justifiable compared to losing an animal in such a painful manner.

Rumen Health Supplies:

  • Probios, the bovine formula (buy it here)
  • Stethoscope (for listening to rumen sounds)
  • Pepto-Bismal and/or Milk of Magnesia
  • Bloat Release (buy it here)
  • Dark Beer (we don’t keep this on hand, but we live close to a 24 hour Walmart in case we ever need it)
  • Baking Soda
  • Angel Maker (I haven’t personally used this yet, but have heard only good things about it and plan on getting it soon – you can purchase it at animalhealthsolutionsinc.com)

Stocking a first aid kit will help you be more prepared for a goat emergency, illness or injury. Here's what we keep in our goat first aid kit!

Vitamin, Minerals & Supplements

  • Vitamin C paste
  • BoSe, selenium gel or Replamin Gel if your area is selenium-deficient. (BoSe is prescription only)
  • Vet Rx: there is a goat & sheep formulation, but they are all basically the same and you can use the basic poultry formulation on goats (buy it here)
  • B Complex – Fortified & Plus
  • Activated charcoal (buy it here)
  • Red Cell or iron supplement
  • Nutridrench, goat and sheep formula (buy it here)
  • Black Strap Molasses (Organic if possible)
  • Honey
  • Cayenne
  • Cinnamon
  • Thiamine (Rx only)

Over the Counter Drugs:

  • Aspirin or Ibuprofen: Anti-inflammatory, pain relief. These are both poorly absorbed by ruminant animals, so large doses are needed (buy the big bottle!) but they are good to have on hand for an emergency.
  • LA 200 or BioMycin 200: For pink eye, chlamydia and mycoplasma, mastitis and certain other illnesses. These are similar drugs (both are oxytetracyclines). However, BioMycin is the no-sting version and is much less painful to administer, but either one will work in a pinch!
  • Pen G: Used for respiratory illnesses, do not use at the same time as an oxytetracycline
    Note: With these drugs, always do your research first and be aware of how to administer, dosage, side-effects and contraindications. Be especially careful if you are treating a pregnant, young or lactating goat! Most drugs are considered off-label or extra-label usage in goats and a vet should be consulted before use – be aware that this can effect milk withdrawals and may even effect the ability to sell your milk, based on your state regulations. Again, talk to a knowledgeable goat breeder/mentor or a vet that has studied and understands goats.

Stocking a first aid kit will help you be more prepared for a goat emergency, illness or injury. Here's what we keep in our goat first aid kit!

Prescription (Or Order Online):

  • Banamine: Anti-inflammatory drug – should only be used under vet guidance, but can be purchased at racehorsemeds.com
  • Baytril: Broad-spectrum antibiotic – should only be used under vet guidance, but can be purchased at racehorsemeds.com
  • Dexamethasone: Corticosteriod used to reduce pain and inflammation – should only be used under vet guidance, but can be purchased at racehorsemeds.com
    Note: With these drugs, always do your research first and be aware of how to administer, dosage, side-effects and contraindications. Be especially careful if you are treating a pregnant, young or lactating goat! Most drugs are considered off-label or extra-label usage in goats and a vet should be consulted before use – be aware that this can effect milk withdrawals and may even effect the ability to sell your milk, based on your state regulations. Again, talk to a knowledgeable goat breeder/mentor or a vet that has studied and understands goats.

Prescription Only Drugs:

  • LRS (lactated ringers solution): Use subcutaneously to treat dehydration
  • Epinephrine: Keep on hand for anaphylactic reactions when giving injections
  • Thiamine: A B-vitamin that is used to treat polio
    Note: Finding the right vet and establishing a good relationship with them is vital! Some vets, once you have established a relationship, will allow you to order these supplies and other items to have on hand for emergency situations. However, the prescription items are intended only to be used under the guidance of the vet. 

Coccidiosis Prevention and Treatment:

  • Toltrazuril 5% suspension (Baycox): used for coccidiosis treatment – may be more effective than Corid and only requires one dose but not approved for goats – can be purchased at racehorse.com
  • Amprolium (Corid): extra-label treatment for goats
  • Decoquinate (Deccox): preventative approved for goats
    Note: I hesitated to put these on the list, because they are off-label and there is always a lot of debate about how to treat/prevent coccidiosis. There is no right or perfect way to prevent or treat it. Currently, we do not use a preventative program for our kids, and have been lucky. But that may change in the future. I wouldn’t hesitate to treat if one of them starts exhibiting signs of coccidiosis. Talk to your vet as these are extra-label drugs. Learn more about Coccidiosis here: https://www.sheepandgoat.com/coccidiosis

Don’t forget to stock your kidding supply kit!

So there you have it! Again, my first aid kit is constantly changing as new products and information becomes available. I will try to keep this list updated and make notes as things change over the years.

What do you keep on hand in your goat first aid kits? Share in the comments below so that we can all help each other be stocked and ready for an emergency.

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Stocking a goat first aid kit will help you be more prepared for an emergency, illness or injury. Here's what we keep in our goat first aid kit!

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