This study was conducted to determine the differences in management and environment and the common disease problems between pet and commercial goats. Goat owners (n=38) were given questionnaires covering the type of enterprise, management and disease. The owners were categorized using both the number of goats on the premises and their purpose (pet goat owners, small commercial herd and large commercial herd owners). Many differences between the populations were observed. The most common problems that affected pet, large commercial herd and small commercial herd goats were skin problems and lameness; abortions, lameness, diarrhoea, death of unknown cause, listeriosis and teat biting; and lameness, respectively. The majority of problems were common to all groups but often occurred with differing regularity. Differences in group size, grazing, concentrate feeding, assisted kidding, kid rearing, foot trimming, deworming, vaccination and veterinary visits were observed between the groups. However, it was difficult to prove that certain problems were the result of management differences. Pet owners felt poorly informed on looking after their goat. CAE accreditation was less common than expected, and the most common reason for not accrediting was the expense involved. The presence of sheep on the premises was very common in the small commercial herds. Teat biting, listeriosis and Johne's disease were only observed in large commercial herds. Both the small commercial and pet groups had complained of death following weight loss of unknown cause. Pet goat owners and small commercial herds found the veterinary surgeon more useful in diagnosis and treatment than teaching, whereas the opposite was true of large commercial herds.
|Publication Title||Goat Veterinary Society Journal|
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