Parrot Mouth & freshening w/ hard udder : LUSENET : Dairygoats : One Thread

Hi all. MAN, is this forum the BEST or what?! Vicki McGaugh is invaluable. *bowing at Vicki's feet*.

I've been away for a while & have been sort of perusing before asking my question. I did a search for "parrot mouth" & "overbite" but didn't come up w/ anything, so here are my questions:

1) Anyone have any pictures of parrot mouth? I KNOW I've seen one somewhere. I had a buck kid born yesterday that I think has it.

2) This buck kid was out of a doe (first freshening 2 year old) that I just bought & that I paid quite a lot of money for. Is this trait heritable?

3) This doe was sold to me as show quality from show lines bred to a show quality buck. She was supposedly raised on CAE prevention - another reason I went ahead & paid the $$$. I bought her mostly for the buck she was bred to & b/c I need the milk. I planned to sell her after she freshened & I had enough milk, b/c she is too short & I already have 2, 2 year olds here that she wouldn't be able to compete against. ANYway, she freshened yesterday afternoon & yes, the udder was huge & beautiful, just like her breeder said it would be, but guess what? It is hard as a rock! Not only that, but it's going on 24 hours since freshening & I've milked her 3 times (oh yeah - on top of everything else, she has teensy teats!!!) & I've gotten a grand total of 1 quart of colostrum.

I am giving her vitamin C, have an oxytocin shot drawn to give her tonight at milking (had to research first to be sure this would be okay) & have been massaging her udder w/ peppermint oil.

So what else can I do, here? & what do you think about this deal? Think I should be upset about this? I mean: isn't this a pretty big indication of CAE?! Or could it just be congestion from being moved so late in pregnancy & maybe trauma from being heaved into the back of a pickup truck & then jumping out of it & . . . BUT - what about this parrot mouth thing? I'm pretty sure I read that stuff like that is heritable. I will take pics of this kid, now that my husband is here & can help & anyone who feels like being a judge can email me & I'll send it to you to see what you think. I didn't have him sold or anything but I'd planned on keeping his sister, who is gorgeous & whose bloodlines go very nicely w/ the rest of my herd. Well obviously, if this is a heritable trait . . . we have a problem!

Looking forward to hearing everyone's opinions & suggestions!

Thanks, Sarah/MI

-- Sarah/MI (, February 21, 2002


Parrot mouth is inheritable. I have a line in alpines i am careful with because it will pop out. I have heard some folks say it gets better, but I don't see where it did, but then w ekept that buck kid for 3 months before he was sold for culls.

Congested udder or udder edema is not exactly the same as CAE. With CAE its rock hard and little milk, also upon freshening the symptoms of swollen knees usually occur as well. I treat udder edema with warm washcloths applied to the udder with massages several times a day and then rub Vicks Vapo Rub in 3 times a day. After 2 weeks this usually goes away.

As for the tiny teats, is she a first freshener? this is typical in many and will stertch out as the lactation goes on and usually by the 2nd freshening is much improved. but then again, it depends upon the line. Hope this helps.

-- Bernice (, February 21, 2002.

Hi Sarah, yes parrot mouth, where the upper jaw is pointed over and down like a parrot, or overshot jaw, where the lower jaw jutts out terribly seeing the teeth are both inherited. My doe Amber

carries this gene, and if I am not really careful who I breed her to her kids will comeout with this. This is a breed character fault in Nubians, as the original imports and some really overshot jaws! She gets hers from Warpaint Acres Superbuck, her grand dad. Bred into my Price of the Field Influenced bucks the kids are fine, bred into someother stuff I have used in the passed makes it appear, so it is likely that both the dam and sire must have this hidden gene for it to poke out.

I cut first fresheners a huge grain of salt! They are new at kidding, have never milked before, are usually growing themselves, don't have as much access to all the feeders as the big does etc. I test the colostrum of all my does, since in the colostrum is the CAE virus that will pass to your kids. But....the only CAE positive does who were tested BECAUSE they were suspected of having hard udder CAE, had no colostrum, in the 3 milking it would be 1 tablespoon, not 1 quart. I would still test her, especially with the stress of the kidding, you should have a reliable result on blood now.

Edema is really hard to get rid of quickly, we have tried all sorts of tricks, even things done on cows, but to no avail. If you keep up with the massage, keep up with the warm compresses, the Vic's, etc. Just make sure and get her udder clean after milking! To much goop on the udder can help harbor staph under the goop. But throughly massage, and she will come into milk. When first fresheners (my daughters Lamancha's were horrible for this) was when I would raise up some of them udder emptiers that I loved so much, bucks who nursed anything on the milk stand, or starve :) They are great on little bitty titties :) So is a milking machine...........Vicki

-- Vicki McGaugh TX (, February 22, 2002.

Yes, parrot mouth is inherited, BUT....

I am on a goat list where one breeder just posted a story about a little buck born with a "parrot mouth". She went ahead and banded him. Turned out the parrot mouth was just a swollen lip or something and went away, so she is now kicking herself as this little guy was pretty nice and out of good breeding. So be sure you know what you are looking for.

We raise horses in addition to goats. In nearly 45 years with this particular herd, there has never been an over or undershot jaw. Two years ago, we had a colt born with a very prominent parrot mouth. We were a little upset, and wondering how far to go with culling, as the dam was in her 20s and had never had a defective foal before. Sire had been used heavily on a number of mares with no problems. Well, by the time the foal was about 2 months old, the parrot mouth completely disappeared and his upper and lower jaws line up perfectly!! We gelded the colt anyway, just in case, but the dam and sire are still being used with no more problem foals.

We have never heard of a parrot mouth correcting itself, and our vets say they haven't either, but there is no disputing the facts. We do think this foal may have been a bit premature (we pasture breed so aren't always certain on due dates) and have wondered if this foal just needed a bit more developing. Whatever, it is WEIRD and I'd have to say it wouldn't be a very common occurance. Just be aware that not every youngster born with what appears to have a parrot mouth really has one. So don't be too quick to cull.

-- Lenette (, February 24, 2002.

Sometimes the kid just has a pointy uper lip that looks like a parrot mouth. Check the bite to ascertain whether it is truly a parrot mouth or not. The pointy lips sometimes smooth out as they grow. :)

-- Rebekah (, February 24, 2002.

That's true! I do come at this from another perspective since I am a Nubian breeder. I want nice full faces, the most width possible between the eyes and all the way down the mussle. So even a pointy mouth at my house, which would go along with a narrow nose, would be meat. Vicki

-- Vicki McGaugh TX (, February 24, 2002.

Thanks for all your input & private responses, folks. The buck kid's top jaw extends almost a half inch past his lower jaw. He can suck but he has a slobbering problem. Definitely freezer material. Too bad - nice conformation & nice pedigree & had a customer wanting a black buck. *sigh*

Had contacted the breeder directly after the doe had given birth & explained that I was quite sure the buck had parrot mouth & that the doe that she supposedly raised on "prevention" had freshened w/ a rock hard udder, no milk & big knees. . . that I am sorry to say it, but that I was less than thrilled w/ this purchase. Attached pics of the buck kid. Her response: That's not parrot mouth, ha ha ha, you silly newbie. I'm sure the dam is merely suffering from edema & I showed her last year & there were no problems w/ her knees.

So I had been doing everything she told me to - & then some - trying to treat for "edema".

The doe has since died. Rushed her to the vet yesterday morning unresponsive w/ a red, cold udder & black teats. Diagnosis: gangrene mastitis. Prognosis: near zero chance of survival. This is after having milked out pure blood the night before . . . I'd even gotten up at 4 a.m. to go check her & give her another peppermint massage! & tried calling the breeder all night long & couldn't get ahold of her. Got ahold of her best friend & "partner in goat crime" & the best friend told me not to worry about it, either. Said "Just keep doing what you've been doing & we'll be there to get her in the morning." The vet tells me No, this is not your fault, Sarah & that it's caused by a pre-existing bacteria the animal was harboring. . . um . . . staphylococcus aurealis or something like that. He said the only treatment is a mastectomy & at that point, she was too far gone & the only humane thing to do was to put her down.

(Sidenote: I have since found out that the breeder has had a couple other goats die of this particular type of mastitis, too. . . )

The breeder was on her way to my house to pick up the doe & the 2 kids & refund my money at this time & was unreachable. When they got to my house, after I told them what happened they immediately started hurling accusations "What the hell did you DO to her?!" - as if I didn't feel badly enough! This was my first goat death! Of course I'm going to treat an animal - even a defective animal - just like any other animal on my farm! & if the animal is suffering & if what I'm doing isn't helping, then I'm taking the animal to the vet! I mean: none of this is the GOAT'S fault, right?! I stupidly assumed that the breeder would be grateful that I cared!

Well, they didn't believe what I'd said had happened to her & THEN told me how stupid I was for taking her to the vet. "Why the hell did you take her to the vet?!" Well, silly me, but if an animal is suffering & dying, I can't just stand by & watch, OKAY?! Obviously, my efforts were NOT effective so it kinda just seemed like the logical choice at the time.

They demanded directions to my vet. Told me she was not giving me any money for a dead goat.

& I haven't heard from them since.

So basically, I paid $300 + an as-of-yet unknown vet bill for 2 genetically defective kids, I guess.

Ahhhhhh, the joys of the Goat Biz.

Does this happen frequently? I bought defective goats from another supposed "professional" breeder that I returned, after she'd said if my vet diagnosed a chronic problem they'd happily refund my money AND my vet bill. Vet diagnosed some type of chronic intestinal thing (not Johnne's she said), the breeder has since had goats test positive for BVD on her farm & has had problems w/ unthriftiness, abortions & deaths the past 2 years (just found this out). I get there to return the goats at the agreed-upon time & no one is home. Well, this is a 2 hour drive for me AND I was on my way to another appointment another 3 hours away! I put the goats in a stock trailer they had parked out by their field, left a note, a ziploc bag w/ the meds from the vet & samples of my grain & hay & left.

& haven't heard from HER since.

So, between these 2 dishonest breeders, we're talking about almost $1000 bucks, here!


I could go on & on about all the other lovely people I have also managed to associate with, but thankfully for you AND for my poor, aching fingers - it's time for me to go out & milk my girls.

-- Sarah/MI (, February 24, 2002.


I am so sorry for your loss and then the loss of money too. When I read your reply about the gangarine mastitis i said "Jesus!" .... and just shook my head. Oh sarah, I am so sorry you entered into a deal with that trouble. There are as many good breeders out there as dishonest. Unfortunately it is through these types of trials and deals we learn who is whom. I'll say this: The goat world is a small place and you can't run or hide, it gets around. Also, what goes around is bound to come back to someone who is dishonest.

I really feel for you and your losses. Sounds like small claims court may be a remedy, but then that takes time and money. I'm not sure about ADGA's ethics committee, I think Vicki is on that. If not I am sure she can better tell you who/what/etc to do.

Best of luck to you and please...... don't give up on goats if you really love them, just be careful in the future. My thoughts and prayers are with you.


-- Bernice (, February 24, 2002.

(((((((hugs))))))). Ow.

-- (, February 25, 2002.

You can tell the breeder that Vick McGaugh on Trade and Arbitration said it is parrot mouth :)

There is a great article on gangrenous mastitis/malignant edema on you need to read up on it, now that your place has been infected with this form of black leg. You will also now need to change your vaccinations to include Covexin 8 instead of just the plain CD&T. Covexin 8 will carry the vaccine for malignant edema in it. Vaccinate now to protect your other stock, with boosters in 21 days. Very graphic photos of how Joyce handled the outbreak on her place, but you can save the doe, it usually affects just one side, so you can milk one side.

Please, always feel free to email any of us directly, honestly I would have sent you to Joyce via the telephone, so you could have gone to the vet with information. I am listed in 911 site, and take phone calls all the time from folks. Rule of thumb, if you don't know what is going on, call a goat person before you go to the vet, so you can go armed! I even do this, if I get up against something I can't figure out I will call some of my old cronies, or call Joyce ( sometimes just having someone else to talk the problem over with gives you the answer that elluded you before! Having a network of friends, also helps in seasons of trouble, like right now in the south we are having this weird floopy 3 day old kids, diagnosed with everything from FKS to septicemia, what is working is selenium and E. I have raised both in my grain, and also giving shots to my goats and my customers goats, to try and help prevent this, we start kidding this weekend. Keep your chin up, you will learn from all of this. I am sorry that this is happening. Vicki

-- Vicki McGaugh TX (, February 26, 2002.

Who is the breeder, so that we will know not to buy from them!!

-- Rebekah (, February 26, 2002.

sara sorry to read of your terrible experiences. I think that we as goat owners take things that happen to our animals a little differently than many animal owners as we invest so much of ourselves in to them. It sounds as if you ended up with a couple of bad deals. Try to remember that for avery one out there with questionable ethics and business dealings there are 10x more that are honest and helpful. Let go of the bitterness take stock of what you've learned so you don't make the same mistakes again and get on with enjoying your goats ...ron in ny

-- ron in ny (, February 27, 2002.

OMG, are you telling me this is contagious?! Holy !#@@!#$!#@$!!!!

I put a doe who's due this weekend - MY FAVORITE DOE - in that pen. Yes, I cleaned out the bedding & put down some lime before putting down new bedding for her, but . . . I didn't like: scrub everything down or anything. I had no idea this was contagious - I just thought it was some sort of opportunistic bacteria-type thing that popped up every so-often. ACK!

Okay, will call the vet abt CoVexin 8 as soon as I eat my breakfast here & recover from slogging around in a foot of snow, doing chores. WHEW. Can I give the imminently-birthing doe a shot, too???? She's my favorite! Not one of my best, by far, but my favorite pet goat out in my barn. :*( *sniffle*


I hate people sometimes.

Thanks as always, Sarah/MI

-- Sarah/MI (, February 27, 2002.

Yes Sarah, it is contagious, it is an organism. Yes you can vaccinated everyone, pregnant or not, young or old. It is in the catalog. Use the sheep dose. We used it years back before I found out that all of the stuff in it wasn't needed in our area. If I had one case of malignant edema though we would go back to using it! You give one shot now and then the booster, all the directions are on it. Do not let your vet talk you into a cattle vaccine. Vicki

-- Vicki McGaugh TX (, February 27, 2002.

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