One More Item That Can Cause Colic

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Well-Known Member
Dec 20, 2007
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Wilmington, NC
We call our goats "four-footed chipper/shredders." Any time we are cutting branches or brush, if it's something the goats can eat, we put it in their pen. A few days ago, my husband threw a bunch of stuff over the fence for them, including some branches off of a Magnolia tree. The goats dragged one of the branches over near the fence, and Betsy (my mini mule) and Syd the mini dug into it. We have several Magnolias on the property, the girls have munched on them before. I used to worry about them getting choked on such coarse stuff, but they've done it so many times without a problem, this time I really didn't think anything about it. Maybe the lure of anything green at this time of year made her eat more than she has previously, I don't know. But about an hour later, I went out there and Syd was down, and rolling. And rolling. And rolling!

She wasn't all sweaty and horribly distressed, but she wasn't real happy, either.We led her out into the yard, and called the vet. He did a quick search, and said he couldn't find anything about Magnolia leaves being toxic. He did find one reference that said they could be an irritant. On his recommendation, we gave Syd some Banamine. She had been nibbling a little at the grass in the yard, but kept trying to lie down. After we gave her the Banamine, she stopped trying to lie down, and gradually went from nibbling to chomping it down in a more normal fashion.

I had been keeping the horses off of the pasture, because the ryegrass out there is pretty chewed down, and needed some time to regrow. Under the circumstances, I felt like "needs must," so we put the girls out there for the rest of the afternoon. I think Syd said "Man, what a horse has to do to get some grass around here!" She has been perfectly normal (or anyway, as normal as she ever gets!) ever since.

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