Vaccinating for enterotoxemia or another disease doesn't always prevent the disease. But in some cases, if a vaccinated goat does get the disease, it will be shorter and less severe, and the goat is less likely to die. And the cost of vaccinating is minor compared with treating the disease or paying to replace a dead goat.
A number of vaccines are used to prevent disease in goats. Most of them are approved for use in sheep but not goats. That doesn't mean that they aren't effective or can't be used in goats but that they haven't been formally tested on goats.
Most goat owners with small herds usually don't need any vaccines other than CDT. In areas where rabies is rampant, some veterinarians recommend that you vaccinate your goats for rabies, even though it isn't approved for goats. It is a good idea to work with a veterinarian to determine what is right for your circumstances.
Here are the common vaccines for goats:
|Disease Protected Against
|When to Give
|Enterotoxemia and Tetanus
|Does: Fourth month of pregnancy Kids: 1 month old and one month later All: Booster annually
|Pasteurella multocida or Mannheimia Haemolytica pneumonia
|Two doses 2–4 weeks apart
|Kids: 6 months old, 3 weeks later and annual booster
|First 28–45 days of pregnancy
To minimize the chance of an adverse reaction, vaccinate goats only when they are in good health.
Do not use expired or cloudy vaccines.
Use a 20-gauge, 1-inch or 3/4-inch needle on an adult, or a 1/2-inch needle on a kid.
Follow the manufacturer's instructions for dosage.
Use a new, sterile needle and syringe on each goat.
Do not mix vaccines.
For the best effect, do not delay booster shots.
Keep a record of vaccinations given.