Friday, June 1, 2012

Ginger's Udder Cover

Ginger has an allergic skin reaction on her udder. We've been trying to get rid of it and the infection for about 3 years.

Even the vet is at a loss as to what to do.

We've paid more in tests and vet bills and biopsies than the goat is worth in the hopes that we will learn something that will heal her udder and be of future help to Vet2Be.

Earlier this week the smell was horrible! We were almost ready to call the vet to have him put her down.

But we decided to try something we hadn't done before we made "the call."

Often we have washed her udder with plain water and a washcloth, but we've never used a hose on it. That's what we started to do on Wednesday.

And we wanted to cover it with a bandage, which we've never been able to do. How do you stick a bandage on an udder without it coming off?

Here's our idea:

I took an XL tee shirt and cut the sleeves off, leaving the seam ON the shirt (not on the sleeves).

I sewed one sleeve shut at the hem to make a bag. I sewed half of the open end of the sleeve to the bottom of the shirt. Then I attached two pieces of elastic that is 12" long. One end went on the shirt, one end is attached to the udder bag.
After hosing her off twice a day for two days, the smell is much less. She doesn't mind being hosed off (I think that the cold water made the sore feel better).

And she doesn't mind the shirt at all! She seems to like keeping the sore on her udder from rubbing the inside of her leg.

She's the first goat that Vet2Be bought with his own money. And she's the sweetest goat we've ever had! Gentle, kind, loving, and a fantastic milker.

We milked her through for 3 years. And it was worth going out to milk her! The only reason we stopped was because we couldn't get rid of the sores from whatever allergy she has.

(Yes, we've changed bedding, food, everything. Literally everything!)

If anyone is interested in seeing a step-by-step tutorial of how I sewed the shirt, please leave me a comment. I've got a few more to make (I want to have 4 so I don't have to wash so often!) and I don't mind taking photos of the process. It takes about 10 minutes to sew one up, so it's a really quick project!


*~*~*~*~Tonia said...

Good job on the udder cover! Have you tried tea tree oil on the sore? One year one of my milkers got some ick sores on her udder couldnt get them to go away.. So I mixed Zinc oxide with Tea Tree oil and Lavender and with in a week they had dried up and were almost gone.

TJ said...

Yes, we've tried zinc (orally and topically) and tea tree oil (which made it worse) and lavender. And a host of other medications, herbs, and essential oil. Sigh.... If this doesn't work, the next thing I'm going to try is to hose it with salt water instead of plain water. Or water and epsom salts. After that I'm pretty sure we're out of options. We keep praying for inspiration. When we feel we have some, we give that a try for a few weeks to see what happens.

Kat K said...

Hi! I stumbled across your site while trying to figure out what to do to make an udder cover to try to wean babies without separating them if possible. I don't read fast enough to scan your other posts but i'd love to chat more with you about her issues and also know this fabulous vet that does email / FB consults that you might want to talk to and see if he has any suggestions! I'd love to know how she's doing anyway though since this was 2+ years ago ;)

TJ said...

I'd love to know about your vet! We have a wonderful vet, but I wouldn't mind having another one "on call" like that.

Our vet did surgery to remove the mass from Ginger's udder. Unfortunately it grew back with a vengeance and we decided it was time to let her go.

She is buried in our little goat cemetery. She is remembered with love and missed often.

Unknown said...

I know this is a long shot being that this is 6 yrs old but I'm desperate... My 4 month pregnant doe has had an awful wound on her udder where her leg rubs. she is always biting at it when I put bag balm on it ect. the vet has no idea what is going on and shes had it for 3 months. any tips on making this and treating this?

TJ said...

Was the wound really a wound? Did she cut herself on something? I would try putting a cream or lotion on instead of bag balm because the bag balm is petroleum based, which means it doesn't soak in. It's easy for dirt and grime to stick to it.

You haven't described the wound very well so I'm not sure if I can help more than that. has been very helpful in the past. You can email them with more information about the wound, they may be able to help more.