Medicinal plants used for diarrhoea treatment in sheep and goats among smallholders in farm settlements of Ogun state, Nigeria
The use of traditional remedies in the treatment of diarrhoea in ruminants is a common form of therapy among poor resource smallholder farmers in Nigeria with restricted access to veterinary healthcare services. The medicinal plants of antidiarrheal importance in smallholder sheep and goat production systems were studied in farm settlements namely Ado-Odo, Ikenne and Ibiade, located in Ogun state, Nigeria. Techniques including
interviews, observations and guided field walks were used to collect data from 150 farmers across the farm settlements. Results showed that all respondents owned either sheep or goats with goats more preferred, while diarrhea was also observed to be a major disease problem in goats compared to sheep. About 92% of the farmers admitted using anti-diarrhoea herbs and about 80% agreed to their effectiveness in the treatment of diarrhoea in sheep and goats. The study identified 11 plant species used to treat diarrhoea with varied recipe and the route of administration was orally. Less than 12% of these plant parts were administered solely, preparing as a single-component while the majority of the identified plants were used in combination with other plant parts. Phytochemical components were analyzed for tannin, saponin, flavonoid and alkaloid which were observed in different plant parts showing their potential as antidiarrheal agents.The usage of these plants could therefore be an indispensable component of traditional medicine practice which can serve as safe alternative and complementary medicines to various allopathic drugs that could help safeguard health and obtain optimum production from animals.
Keywords: Sheep, goats, diarrhoea, medicinal plants, phytochemical, Ogun state Nigeria