Tetanus, commonly called lockjaw, results when a wound is infected with the soil-borne bacterium Clostridium tetani. Tetanus is characterized by a very high fever and the development of rigid, tense muscles. In the latter stages, the animal goes down and the muscles over the entire body become hard and contracted. Treatment of infected animals includes early cleansing and disinfection of wounds and the use of antitoxins. A variety of clostridial organisms can cause illness and death in farm animals. Though some diseases are uncommon, they can occur. For this reason alone, the routine use of combined clostridial vaccines is recommended. Contact your veterinarian for recommendations.