Checking for Parasitic Anemia

Parasite Load:  Ask anyone who has spent time with me around my goats, I check their eye membranes whenever I’m out with them in the pasture. I check them 2 times a day in my milking does (when they are on the stand) and anytime I spend even a small amount of time with the others.  What am I doing that for?  It can be an indication of parasite load.  If they are dark pink (think watermelon) they are doing great.  If they are pale or white, they may have a dangerous worm load (commonly Haemonchus contortus, aka Hc or Barber Pole) that needs to be addressed yesterday – jump into action IMMEDIATELY! If you are in a wetland/lowland area, Liver Fluke should also be considered as a possible culprit.  I feel that this anemia may correlate to a copper deficiency, so take a look at that as well if you are in a copper deficient area.  Copper deficient animals are more susceptible to heavy parasite loads.  I strongly suggest using fecal testing in addition to the FAMACHA procedure to monitor parasite load in your herd.

Click here to see the FAMACHA chart showing the eye membrane of a goat and the chart.   This link provides online teaching which shows how to correctly check their eye membranes and FAMACHA certification required to buy the card needed to properly perform the FAMACHA technique.

You will need good herbal parasite management, if that is your desire.  This formula is what I use for my herd.

Vitalerbs is a wonderful vitamin/mineral supplement to use to provide the body with the nutrients it needs.

Digestive Tract Damage. Parasitic anemia involves damage to the digestive tract, so we need to provide an herbal mix that soothes and heals the digestive tract lining. I suggest Quick Colon #2 (when the gut needs soothing/healing AND toxins need to be adsorbed/absorbed), or the Soothing Digestion Formula (for basic gut soothing/healing). The Soothing Digestion Formula is only available in capsules, so this is the bulk mix: 3 ounces Slippery Elm powder and 1 ounce Licorice root powder. Fed at one Tablespoon, 2x/day. Reevaluate after 2 weeks.