Floppy Kid Syndrome

Floppy Kid Syndrome

Sue Reith
Carmelita Toggs
Bainbridge, WA

published here with kind permission of Sue Reith

FKS… How it happens… (a detailed scientific explanation of the process…)

For those that find this stuff interesting, this info on how FKS comes about in goat birthing originated, with some species transfer from canine to caprine to help us understand how it happens in goats as well, from notes taken at a veterinary seminar by Jacob Mosier DVM, a well respected canine veterinarian at Kansas State University College of Veterinary Medicine.  His research on the phenomenon concluded that: At birth a newborn puppy should have a pH level of 7.4.  A puppy can be hung up in the birth canal for too long or the bitch might not remove the sac, causing delayed breathing.  We need to be sure it breathes fairly soon because the longer it doesn’t, the more its blood pH level drops, the more acidotic it becomes. During the time it’s still wet (about 20 minutes), the pH drops to about 7.1. If it drops to 6.6 the heart will stop.  Despite the delay in the birth process, once revived and breathing FPS pups appear healthy and strong.  But then around the 36th to 72nd hour they begin to fade and lose vigor, and the tongue is pale.  By the 96th hour, without correction of the pH balance (that’s where Baking Soda comes into the picture!), thus reversing the acid condition that has begun, they become flaccid and die.


[Note from Guinevere McIntyre:  Take the kid off mother’s milk!  They have been over-doing it and they will not suffer from not having milk for a couple days, and they will die if you insist they drink more milk.  Instead of milk, bottle-feeding water with baking soda is most crucial.  No milk until their behavior is back to normal.]

I have found, in treating several FKS kids in this community over the past few years, (all of which had successful outcomes) that I did three things not listed in either FKS posts… I did those 3 things, noted below, because with the first kid, brought to me fairly late in the game, I was not getting good results with treatment until I did so, and found the results so remarkably quick when I did apply them that I used them the rest of the time on the FKS kids.

  1. I gave a dose of Enterotoxemia Antitoxin (NOT the TOXOID!) because while the stomach was not digesting food it was a perfect setup for Enterotoxemia, which is always present in a goat’s gut unless it has been properly vaccinated, and which is opportunistic and flourishes the minute the stomach does not digest its contents. That first FKS kid rather quickly indicated problems with abdominal pain, classic for Enterotoxemia. The Entero Antitoxin reversed that.
  2. I gave SQ doses of BoSe (1cc/40lbs) every 2nd day for the first 6 days, and continued weekly for 2 more times after that.
  3. I gave SQ doses of inj. Fortified B-Complex every day for the first 4 days.

The FKS kids were so weak when they were brought to me that I had to tube Pedialyte into them, and then began to tube combinations of oral amino acids and electrolytes, dextrose, and bicarbonate of soda (baking soda) into them 3x daily for about 3 days until they could once again take a bottle.

I also gave oral doses of Pepto Bismol intermittently throughout the day, and of course Probios, which is essential as well.

The improvement was remarkable once I established that formula of treatment. All of those kids I treated are doing fine today.

One caveat should be offered here, however. It is possible to have a combination of troubles all at once in a single kid! One of the kids I treated was discovered, as soon as I brought it around from the FKS, to be suffering from Joint Ill at the same time! We then had to start on a whole different regimen of treatment with which we finally got that under control as well.

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