Glastonbury CT Vet

Parasite Management

Goat/Sheep Deworming & Vaccination Guidelines

*Please note: these are guidelines only and our veterinarians may have specific recommendations for your farm or a particular animal


Control programs are based on proper management of pastures, maximizing nutrition, and limited, proper use of dewormers. Sound pasture management consists of minimizing stocking rates and the use of "safe" pastures. Safe pastures are those used for forage crops, those grazed by horses or cattle, or those not grazed by sheep or goats for 3 months in the warm season and 6 months in the cool season. Intensive pasture rotation systems that maximize forage utilization and provide browse to goats also help. It should be noted that deworming all animals at the time of movement to safe pasture is not recommended. Keeping animals in a drylot for 48-72 hours after deworming allows the eggs (which aren't killed by dewormers) that have already been laid to pass in feces and remain on the drylot instead of contaminating pasture.

We recommend a fecal test-based deworming program:

  1. Test feces prior to deworming (in large commercial herds, animals with consistently high fecal egg counts should be culled from the herd)
  2. Deworm based on fecal egg counts/species of parasites found
  3. Re-test feces 3-5 weeks after administration of deworming product
  4. In some cases, administration of a dewormer may not be needed
  5. Fecal testing should be performed prior to pasture rotation (every 3 months) – may combine a herd sample if all animals are doing well.

Pregnant animals: fecal tests should be done 1 month prior to lambing/kidding and lambs/kids should be kept with ewes/does on separate pasture from the rest of the herd.

Lambs/Kids: Fecal samples should be taken on any new additions to the herd prior to introduction. Any animals with signs of diarrhea should be isolated, fecal tested & dewormed immediately. A coccidiostat in the feed may be necessary with kids/lambs as they are very susceptible to coccidiosis. Coccidiostats should be given prophylactically for 28 days in a row after lambs are put into a new environment. Oocysts can be killed by heat, direct sunlight, and drying. Cleaning at high temperatures and allowing area to dry is recommended.

*Please note that dosages are not the same for sheep, goats and horses. Give our office a call if you have any questions: 860-659-0848.


Vaccinations for all adult sheep & goats:
  1. Clostridium C & D plus tetanus (CD&T) – 2cc subcutaneous injection given initially at 3 months of age and again 3-4 weeks later, then annually.
  2. Rabies (sheep) – One vaccination given at 3 months of age, then repeated in 1 year, then every 3 years after that.
  3. Rabies (goats) – One vaccination given at 3 months of age, then repeated annually. PLEASE NOTE: this vaccine is NOT approved/licensed in goats. We still recommend that all goats be vaccinated, but they will not be considered legally protected. It is our feeling that some protection to you and your animals is better then nothing.



Disclaimer: No single deworming program is appropriate for every farm. Factors that must be considered in designing a deworming program include location, whitetail deer exposure, pasture capacity, population and ages of animals, weather, etc. The schedule below is a good template for parasite control, but does not replace fecal testing and risk evaluation by your veterinarian.


-Ivermectin (trade name Ivomec) or doramectin (Dectomax) injectable. These are both 1% solutions for subcutaneous injection, and are used primarily for their effectiveness in controlling P.tenuis, the parasite that causes meningeal worm disease via transmission through a snail or slug intermediate host. Both work to cover possible infections occurring in the period prior to and for a time after administration (30 days total for Ivomec, 45 days for Dectomax). Although both have fair efficacy against intestinal roundworms, it is good practice to use fenbendazole on a rotational basis for intestinal roundworm and tapeworm control.


-Fenbendazole (trade name Panacur, Safeguard, others). This is an oral liquid or paste marketed in the US for sheep, cattle, horses, and pigs. It is extremely safe to use and can be used concurrently with injectable dewormers (even given at the same time). Fenbendazole will not kill meningeal worm larvae, but is more effective than ivermectin or doramectin against intestinal parasites, and can be used for 3-5 days in a row in cases of obvious roundworm or tapeworm infestation ("flush deworming").


Farms that have been relying on injectable ivermectin or doramectin (Dectomax) as their only source of intestinal parasite control have been unwittingly selecting for drug-resistant worms, in particular whipworms and Nematodirus. This point underscores the need to use injectable ivermectin/dectomax during meningeal worm/snail season, but also to rotate fenbendazole (Safeguard or Panacur are trade names) into the program as previously suggested.

January 15th Fenbendazole  
March 1st   Fenbendazole
April 1st Dectomax & Fenbendazole Ivomec
May 1st   Ivomec
May 15th Dectomax  
June 1st   Ivomec
July 1st Dectomax & Fenbendazole Ivomec
August 1st   Ivomec & Fenbendazole
August 15th Dectomax  
September 1st   Ivomec
October 1st Dectomax & Fenbendazole Ivomec
November 1st   Ivomec
November 15th Dectomax  
December 1st   Ivomec & Fenbendazole


A routine fecal exam by centrifugation in a sugar solution is the only way to judge the efficacy of your deworming program. The best time to run fecal exams is 3-5 weeks after deworming, as any breakthrough or re-infestation problems should be detected. 10% of your herd (10 animals as a minimum) should be tested to screen for deworming issues. We have an in-house fecal laboratory to perform these tests (as well as a giardia/cryptospordium test to diagnose these two causes of diarrhea), and will accept drop-off samples. Please call in advance if you will be bringing more than 10 samples. Collect fresh samples from the rectum using lube and a glove (sample size about as big as a walnut) and refrigerate until testing (24-hours maximum).