After a few days we realized it wasn't going away, in fact the lumps appeared to be getting harder. We didn't want to take any chances, so we called our vet. And since we didn't want to transport her this close to kidding, we asked him to come out. This is a more expensive endeavor, since we have to pay mileage, but we felt it was necessary this time.
When he arrived and examined her, he ruled out any herniation because he could pull the lumps out away from the muscles of her body cavity and surround them with his fingers. Thank goodness. Next, he got out his portable ultra sound. I'm sorry, I didn't get any pictures, I was too busy watching. I did ask his permission to take these pictures. The ultra sound was interesting. He thought the image displayed looked like an abscess so his next step was to see what would happen when he poked it with a syringe. He poked around on it for a while, but couldn't pull anything out of it. But after he took the needle out and squirted the syringe, out came the characteristic pus that comes from an abscess. He wanted to make sure that was what it was before he lanced the lumps.
For some of the other abscesses our goat occasionally get, we usually let them come to a head and start to crack open on their own. This is shown in another post here. This time, due to the location and the timing of Copper's pregnancy, we wanted these abscesses, there were two right next to each other, dealt with now so they could heal before she goes into labor. We felt she had gotten into some of the thorny bushes we have growing around here and poked herself a couple of times, causing these abscesses.
He continued to work on them until he felt like he had most of the pus out.
Then he used a hemostat to pull out some of the skin that formed the pocket around the abscess. He called this the plug and described it as the skin that encases the abscess, walling it off from the tissue around it. He said if you can puncture, or pull out this plug then the body is able to quickly heal itself. After he finished cleaning out the abscess he infused it with a cephalosporin antibiotic, gave Copper an antibiotic shot and a shot to deal with pain and swelling, insuring me that none of this would harm her babies.
We consider this another investment in our learning process. I told Frank, sometimes you have to pay to go to school. This was one of those cases. And, of course, while the vet was here we had a nice visit about a variety of other things that we can add to our arsenal of knowledge. Every little bit helps and you never know when it will come in handy. Take advantage of every learning opportunity that comes your way, even if it involves pus and scalpels. Sometimes these lessons present themselves in unexpected ways. Learn all you can, everyday, in every way.
Until next time - Fern