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Study of Clinico-Hematobiochemical Changes and Therapeutic Management of Naturally Infected Cases of Respiratory Disease in Non-Descript Goats of Bareilly Region

Ravi Shankar Kumar Mandal V.K. Gupta Vivek Joshi Surender Kumar D. B. Mondal
Vol 7(6), 211-211

The study was conducted on 24 non-descript stall fed goats of both sex and 3 months to 4 years old. Out of 24 goats, 16 were diagnosed as sufferers from respiratory disease on the basis of clinical manifestations such as mucopurulent to serous nasal discharge, coughing, breathing pattern, respiratory sounds, increased rectal temperature, elevated respiration rate and elevated heart rate, and 8 were normal healthy. In order to elucidate the hematobiochemical changes in respiratory disease of goats, blood samples were collected from jugular veins in EDTA and serum vials. Sterilized deep nasal swabs were collected from infected animals after cleaning the nostrils with 70 % alcohol cotton swabs and subjected for bacterial isolation and antibiotic sensitivity test. On the basis of ABST, moxifloxacin was used to treat the infected animals with supportive therapy. A significant decrease in the mean hemoglobin concentration, hematocrit (PCV), Lymphocyte count, total protein, albumin, A: G ratio and phosphorus values were observed among infected goats as compared to healthy goats. Total leucocyte counts, neutrophil counts, eosinophils, serum calcium, serum globulins, blood urea nitrogen (BUN), creatinine, aspartate transaminase (AST) and alanine transaminase (ALT) were significantly higher in infected goats as compared to healthy goats. Moxifloxacin at a dose rate of 5 mg/kg bodyweight found 100% effective in treatment of naturally infected cases of respiratory disease in goats.

Keywords : Respiratory Disease Haematobiochemical ABST Moxifloxacin Neutrophil


Goats were among the first farm animals to be domesticated. In India, goats play a vital role in the economy of poor, deprived, backward classes, and landless laborers. The respiratory system constitutes the most extensive surface that is exposed directly to the ambient environment. Pneumonia is a leading cause of economic losses in the ruminant industry throughout the world (Yener et al., 2009). The tendency of these animals to huddle and group rearing practices further predispose to infectious and contagious diseases (Soni and Sharma, 1990). This causes considerable financial losses to goat keepers in the form of decreased meat and milk production along with reduced number of offspring. Many times due to environmental stress, immunosuppression and deficient managemental practices, secondary invaders more severely affect the diseased individuals; moreover, mixed infections with multiple etiologies are also common phenomena (Scott, 2011). Pneumonia usually associated with toxemia and septicemia, which leads to alterations in hemato-biochemical profile of infected animals. The disease is also an important animal welfare concern (Naveed et al., 1999).The purpose of this work was to determine hematobiochemical features and in goats having respiratory disease naturally in comparison with healthy goats and clinico-therapeutic management of naturally infected cases of respiratory disease in goats.

Materials and Methods

Study Area

The study was performed at Bareilly region which is the Northern Indian state of Uttar Pradesh. The city of Bareilly is located at 2810’N 7823’E at a mean altitude of 879 feet above sea level (India yearbook, 2015). This study was performed in the sheep and goat farm I.V.R.I., Izatnagar. All animals used in this study were non-descriptive breed aged between 3 months and 4 years old and all were maintained stall-fed.

Clinical Examination

A thorough clinical examination was performed on all the animals for nasal discharge, breathing pattern, rectal temperature (°F), respiration rate (per minute), heart rate (beats/minute), abnormal respiratory sound, mucous membrane and coughing. The signs in the clinical cases of respiratory diseases were observed and recorded.

Antibiotic Sensitivity of Nasal Swab

Sterilized deep nasal swabs were collected from infected animals after cleaning the nostrils with 70 % alcohol cotton swab. The samples were subjected to bacterial isolation on agar cultural characteristics of the isolates were studies on MacConkey and nutrient agars. The isolates on blood agar were examined for size of colonies, haemolytic changes and on ManConkey agar for lactose and non-lactose fermenting mucoid colonies. Primarily the isolates were biochemically characterized by KOH, catalase, oxidase and O-F (oxidation-fermentation) test (Quinn et al.,1994). Further secondary biochemical tests (Indole test, Methyl-Red(MR) test, Voges-Proskeur (VP) test, Citrate Utilization test, Urease test, Nitrate Reduction test, Hydrogen Sulphide production on Triple Sugar Iron (TSI) agar, coagulase (rabbit plasma), Carbohydrate Fermentation test) were performed as per Barrow and Feltham (1993). Bacterial isolates obtained were subjected to disc diffusion assay as per the method described by Bauer et al. (1966). The antibiotic discs used in the study were procured from Hi Media Laboratories Ltd. Mumbai. Isolates were tested for sensitivity against Moxifloxacin (MO, 5 μg), Co-Trimoxazole (COT, 25 μg), Ceftrixone (CTR, 30 μg), Enrofloxacin (EX, 5μg), Gentamicin (G, 10μg) and Amoxyclav (AMC, 30 μg).

Sample Collection

Blood was collected in EDTA vial and serum vial from jugular vein from hematobiochemical analysis. Haemoglobin concentration (g/dl) in the whole blood was estimated by acid Haematin method (Coles, 1986). Packed cell volume (PCV %) in whole blood was determined by capillary micro hematocrit method (Coles, 1986). MCH, MCV and MCHC were calculated. Total Leukocyte Count (TLC) and Differential Leukocyte Count (DLC) were done manually as described by Coles (1986). Total protein, total albumin, blood urea nitrogen (BUN), serum creatinine, calcium, phosphorus, alanine aminotransferase (ALT) and aspartate aminotransferase (AST) were estimated as per standard procedure.

Treatment Protocol

Diseased animal were treated with selected antibiotic. Animal was given Zeet (Chlorpheneramine malleate) @ 1-2 ml and Melonex (Meloxicam) as a supportive therapy.

S. No Group Treatment
1 Treatment Group(N=16) Antimicrobial compound + CPM+ Meloxicam
2 Healthy control(N=8) No

Data Analysis

Data obtained was analysed by statistical software SPSS version 22.0 using one way analysis of variance (ANOVA) using Tucky HSD and considered significant at p<0.05 or highly significant at p<0.01.


Clinical Evaluation

The clinical profiles of 16 goats suffering from respiratory tract infections in comparison with 8 healthy goats are shown in Table 1.

Table 1: Clinical manifestations of respiratory diseases

Manifestation Healthy Goats (n=8) Respiratory Diseased Goats (n= 16)
Nasal discharge Absent Serous discharge- 6 cases

Mucopurulent- 10 cases

Breathing pattern Thoracic breathing Abdominal breathing with movements of ribs-12 cases, normal thoracic breathing in 4 cases.
Rectal Temperature (°F) 102.1±0.12 103.9 ± 0.19**
Respiration rate (per minute) 32.38 ± 2.45 45.44 ± 9.40**
Heart rate ( beats/minute) 90.50 ± 1.36 114.00 ± 2.80**
Abnormal respiratory sound Absent Present
Mucous membrane Normal Congested
Coughing Absent Present in 14 cases

(Data is given as mean ± S.E., *P<0.05- Significant, **P<0.01- Highly significant)

The infected goats were dull, depressed, coughing, abnormal respiratory sounds with reduced or no feed intake. The goats had clinical evidence of respiratory tract infection, with mucopurulent discharge (N=10) and serous nasal discharge (N=6). Normal healthy group revealed thoracic breathing pattern whereas severely affected animals revealed abnormal abdominal breathing pattern (N=12) and less severe cases shows thoracic breathing pattern (N=4). Rectal temperature, heart rate and respiration rate was significantly high (p<0.001) as compared to normal healthy control group (Fig. 1).

E:\clinical cases\goat research\IMG_0068 - Copy.JPG E:\clinical cases\goat research\IMG_1196.JPG

Fig. 1: Naturally infected goats of respiratory disease showing the mucopurulent nasal discharge

Antibiotic Sensitivity and Isolation

ABST revealed highest zone of inhibition for moxifloxacin. Amongst 16 clinical cases of respiratory tract infection in goats a total of 23 bacterial isolates were identified which included 16 bacterial isolates belonging to Gram’s positive group and 7 bacterial isolates belonging to Gram’s negative group. It was observed that out of total 23 isolates, 11 (47.83%) were coagulates positive Staphylococcus sp., 5 (21.47%) were coagulates negative Staphylococcus sp., and 7 (30.43%) were E. coli (Table 2).

Table 2: Bacterial isolates from the nasal swabs samples of naturally infected non-descript goats

No. of Goats


Name of Bacteria No. of Culture Positive Samples (%)
16 Coagulase +ve Staphylococcus sp. 11 (47.83)
Coagulase –ve Staphylococcus sp. 5 (21.47)
E. coli 7 (30.43)

Moxifloxacin antibiotic showed highest zone of inhibition on all isolates and selected for therapeutic uses in goat for respiratory infections. Haematological changes and serum biochemical changes of naturally infected goats in comparison with healthy goats are shown in Table 3 and Table 4 respectively. Infected goats were treated with injection moxifloxacin @ 5 mg/kg body weight IM, OD for 3-5 day along with supportive therapy using Meloxicam @ 0.5 mg/kg body weight intramuscularly and Pheniraminemaleates @ 0.5 mg/kg body weight intramuscularly once daily. After therapy all 16 affected goats showed fair clinical recovery with the subsidence of clinical sign of coughing, nasal discharge, labored breathing, reparation rate and normal rectal temperature.

Table 3: Hematological changes in diseased and healthy goats

Parameters Healthy Goats (n=8) Respiratory Diseased Goats (n= 16) Normal Reference Range (Radostits et al.,2007, Chauhan and Chandra 2003)
Hb(g%) 9.70 ± 0.13 8.25 ± .16* 8-12
PCV (%) 27.50 ± 0.46 24.68 ± 0.59* 22-38
TEC (million/µl) 8.8±0.20 5.6±0.24** 8-18
MCV 31.65±0.54 44.83±2.05** 19-37
MCH 11.06±0.10 14.94±0.53** 5.2-8.0
MCHC 35.01±0.46 33.56±0.35* 30-36
TLC (per/µl) 9918.75 ± 151.46 17154 .38± 654.93** 4000-13000
Neutrophil (%) 36.63 ± 1.60 69.06 ± 1.34** 30-48
Lymphocyte (%) 57.75 ±1.30 25.13 ± 1.19** 50-70
Monocyte (%) 3.75 ± 0.68 4.44 ± 0.40 1-4
Eosinophil (%) 1.88 ± 0.23 1.38 ± 0.20 3-8

(Data is given as mean ± S.E. (*P<0.05- significant, **P<0.01- highly significant)

Table 4: Serum biochemical changes of diseased and healthy goats

Parameters Healthy Goats (n=8) Respiratory Diseased Goats (n= 16) Normal Reference Range

(Kaneko et al., 2008)

Total Protein (g/dl) 6.58 ± 0.11 5.63 ± 0.07** 6.4-7.0
Albumin (g/dl) 3.37 ± 0.12 2.04± 0.07** 2.7-3.1
Globulin (g/dl) 3.21 ± 0.11 3.59 ± 0.08* 2.7-4.1
A:G ratio 1.06 ± 0.06 0.58 ± 0.03** 6.3-12.6
AST (IU/l) 108.38 ± 4.92 121.06 ± 1.40** 167-513
ALT (IU/l) 34.25 ± 1.11 37.99. ± 1.06** 6-19
BUN (mg/dl) 21.59 ± 0.99 26.74 ± 0.74** 10-20
Creatinine (mg/dl) 0.85±0.01 0.95±0.03* 1-1.8
Calcium (mg/dl) 8.13 ±0.02 11.08 ± 0.09** 8.9-11.7
Phosphorus (mg/dl) 3.69 ± 0.03 2.38 ± 0.05** 4.2-9.1

(Data is given as mean ± S.E., *P<0.05- significant, **P<0.01- highly significant)


The fever observed in respiratory disease is constant finding in natural and experimental infection (Rahman and Singh, 1990). Dyspnea, abdominal respiration, cough, pulmonary crackling and nasal exudates have also been reported in infected goats (Srivastava et al., 1989). The present study revealed that mean Hb, PCV, total protein, serum albumin, serum phosphorus, lymphocyte counts and A:G ratio were significantly reduced and mean TLC, neutrophil, serum calcium were significantly increased in diseased animals as compared to healthy control. Our findings were supported by previous reports from Mondal et al., 2004. TLC and DLC are more reliable indications for the presence of the lesion than clinical assessment (Radostits et al., 2007). Increase in enzymatic activity of AST and ALT observed in the present study might have occurred due to inflammatory and degenerative changes in the organs (Nayak and Bhowmik, 1991). The depletion of serum proteins observed may be due to the utilization of blood proteins by organisms for their proliferation as well as decreased synthesis of proteins in the damaged liver during the disease process. Increase in globulin fractions of the total serum proteins may reflect formation of immunoglobins in presence of bacterial infection. Similar biochemical changes were also reported by Kaneko and Cornelius (1970) and Kumar et al., 1994. Antibiotics are indicated for treatment of bacterial pneumonia. The antibiotic used in therapy depends on the nature of the pneumonia, the microorganisms most commonly causing pneumonia in the geographical region, and the immune status and underlying health of the individual. The antibiotic of choice indicated in therapy should be selected after antibiotic sensitive test (Ramya, 2014). The development of antibiotic resistance is an increasing problem, and therefore the susceptibility of the major respiratory pathogens to specific antimicrobials has to be monitored closely (Godinho, 2008). Moxifloxacin is a novel fourth generation fluoroquinolone with a broad spectrum of antibacterial activity against Gram-positive and Gram-negative bacteria, anaerobes and atypical organisms such as Mycoplasma and Chlamydia spp (Kowalski et al., 2003). In vivo, moxifloxacin is effective in mouse models of typical and atypical respiratory tract infections and in guinea pigs infected with Mycoplasma pneumoniae (Stass et al., 1998). Moxifloxacin, has not been used in goats, because of lack of data regarding its efficacy. Furthermore, moxifloxacin-treated goats had a significantly better clinical improvement and cure. Sargison and Scott (1995) have concluded that in general, newer antibiotics are more valuable than older ones for the treatment of respiratory disease, because long-standing use of latter agents increases the prevalence of microbial isolates resistant.


Respiratory disease in small ruminants should receive more attention if the overall control of disease in the livestock industry is to be meaningful. This study shows that respiratory disease causes disturbances in blood factors and electrolytes. Moxifloxacin was found to be effective antibiotic of choice for treatment of respiratory disease induced clinical improvement.


The authors are highly thankful to the Director, ICAR-Indian Veterinary Research Institute, for providing the necessary research facilities to carry out this work.


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