Caprine Arthritis Encephalitis Virus (CAE)
CAE is not transmittable to humans. It is goat specific and is transferred to kids through colostrum and milk and has no cure. It is theorized to be transferred through bodily fluids and feces as well. There are 5 different forms of CAE and your goat may not exhibit signs, or the signs can resemble other issues. Positive tests don’t always mean the goat has the disease, it just means antibodies are present and the goat was exposed to it at some point. Also, the disease can be dormant for a long time only to provide a positive test years later when activated. They can have the virus but never have the disease. Many herds pull babies and pasteurize milk to practice CAE prevention.
On our farm, we test all goats yearly before breeding season so should one show positive, we can deal with it before kidding.
Johne’s, a gastrointestinal disease also known as paratuberculosis, is contagious within your herd, and is fatal. It is also known to pass through milk to humans and show as Crohn’s disease. Goats contract the disease while young from infected milk, manure, or feed contaminated by an infected adult. There is no cure. Typically symptoms do not show up for months or years. Symptoms are similar to other ailments and once the disease sets in, animals go downhill quickly.
We test all goats bi-annually until we maintain a closed herd since it can be transmitted in the milk to humans.
Caseous lymphadenitis (CL)
CL is most known for causing accesses along the goats lymphatic system. If a goat has a CL access and it ruptures, the disease is then spread to other goats via the pus that comes from the access. Blood tests can sometimes not be reliable. You must test the abscess to get a positive or negative on it.
We test bi-annually until we maintain a closed herd. We also feel and inspect animals daily to look for lumps or other health issues.
G6S – G6-Sulfatase deficiency
A mutation related to Nubian goats. From UCDavis site “Clinically, affected goats exhibit delayed motor development, growth retardation, and early death. The disease is inherited in an autosomal recessive fashion. Therefore, both sexes are equally affected and two copies of the defective gene must be present for signs of the disorder to be observed. Breeding two carrier goats, which are normal but each possesses a single copy of the mutation, is predicted to produce 25% affected offspring.”
We test all Nubian or Nubian crosses. When breeding, if both parents have been tested as normal, we do not test the kids as they will be “normal by parentage”. IF we have or keep a carrier, we band all males and test all does from that carrier doe. For GS6 testing we use Veterinary Genetics Laboratory at UC Davis. Which is coordinated through our registries, both MDGA and ADGA.