update on sheep, prolapse and abortiongreenspun.com : LUSENET : Countryside : One Thread
Well it happened, the second ewe died in the night. She also tried to abort her lamb(s) and apparently whatever is causing it just saps the ewe's strength. Death occures in 12 hours. Called the vet and he told me to take her to Michigan State University Diagnostic Lab for an autospy and should have a diagnosis/prognosis and hopefully treatment for the other 13 ewes by tomorrow. Hopefully, not to late and it will not be something that is going through the whole herd. There were several other very pregrant looking ewes on the autosopy pile, which makes me wonder if I'm not alone. I figured if I could spend $229 for a year of Weight Watchers I need to spend the money (up to $200 depending on tests done)to find out what is going on. Have heard of several dairies around who are loosing calves to a very fast progressing pnemonia (sp), also. Maybe it is the strange weather.
The ewe that prolapsed is doing good. The prolapse has withdrawn completely and she is bright eyed and bushy tailed today. From what I understand she should be ok in a few days - couple weeks and should lamb ok. We'll see.
This has certainly been a learning experience, I now know more about sheep aborting and prolapse than I really cared to. Will keep folks posted so maybe we can all learn from this very expensive experience.
-- Betsy K (email@example.com), February 05, 2001
Betsy, It does sound like you are doing the right things. I wish I could offer more help but I just want to say when we started with sheep it was a total disaster. Our first ewe lost triplets over a two week period. We got so tired of burying lambs!. It will get better, especially as you will keep learning. One day you will walk into the barn, and a ewe you didn't even know was in labour will have a perfect pair of twins. Sometimes it is so easy and sometimes so hard! Don't give up it will get better. Kim
-- kim (firstname.lastname@example.org), February 05, 2001.
Good for you Betsy. They can give you some answers and then you can decide whether you want to continue in sheep, or with this particular line anyway.
-- diane (email@example.com), February 06, 2001.
Lambing season can be very stressful, with the late nights or up several times in the night. After 25 years at this I still wake up and can swear someone is in real trouble. I go to the barn and everything is fine, but I can never go back to sleep until I check.
There are several diseases that can cause ewes to abort also toximia. the University was a good move and will be worth the money in the long run. Because what ever it turns out to be can probably be treated and become part of your maintance program.
There are a few books I found to be very helpful when I was just starting out "Raising Sheep the Modern Way" and a notebook called SIDs Livestock Manual (I think that's the title. They might be in the Countryside bookstore. If not, try the feed store.
Good luck, and it will get better.
-- jennifer (CA) (firstname.lastname@example.org), February 06, 2001.
I know what everyone means by haveing sheep being a learning process. I started out with a pair, which never did mate. I had in the meantime purchased two bred ewes which gave me single lambs. That summer (I believe neighborhood dogs, including my sons dogs) got one of my ewes and both spring lambs! My son's dogs don't visit any more and that particular neighbor moved so no more dog from his way. The next summer I bought my own ram and Dolly, my first ewe gave me twin lambs, but killed one and kept the other. (I decided this the next year, when I got down to the barn just after she had a new set of twins and kept butting the little female away. It was a female that was dead the first time. I made her feed the little female the first time or two then we bottle fed her.) When I dock my lambs tails, I do not remove them aaallll the way back. I had read that this weakens the muscles and my Dolly has a stubby tail. When I purchased Susie her tail was all the way back but has not had any problems so far. This is her third birth and she gave me twins this time. . . born the exact same date as last year! I found this out when I recorded it in my book, I thought it was a little unusual. Dolly is due in a few more weeks so when she gets close, I will keep a very close eye on her. I have been making sure she gets some grain, but not too much, hoping she just might want to feed both lambs this time. Having sheep has definitely been a learning experience. . . and continues to be. Best of luck. Don't they look adorable bouncing around a spring pasture?
-- phyllis a. warman (email@example.com), February 08, 2001.