Author Topic: how to look after orphan lambs  (Read 7430 times)

claireS

  • Joined Feb 2009
how to look after orphan lambs
« on: March 08, 2009, 02:27:03 pm »
Hi all. I have been offered a couple of orphan lambs but they are only a few days old. I have read that they will need to be kept warm for a week. I am planning on building a shelter in their pasture which will consist of a few pallets lined with straw bales, straw bedding and a piece of shiplap fence as the roof. My question is whether I will be able to keep them outside with such a shelter form the outset or will I have the nightmare of trying to keep them indoors for a while? what do u guys think?

HappyHippy

  • Joined Jul 2012
  • Lesmahagow, Lanark
    • Yonderton Farm,
    • Facebook
Re: how to look after orphan lambs
« Reply #1 on: March 08, 2009, 03:39:57 pm »
Hi,
I've not had orphaned lambs since I was a child, but we always kept them inside in a smallish pen in a big barn with plenty of straw for warmth - just until they're big enough to withstand the elements (and being in Scotland it's usually mid spring before that happens lol!) It also makes all the bottle feeds easier and more pleasant than standing in the pouring rain !

claireS

  • Joined Feb 2009
Re: how to look after orphan lambs
« Reply #2 on: March 08, 2009, 04:46:18 pm »
thanks. I don't have a barn so would have to keep them in a garage and make a pen. Would i let them out during the day and just house them indoors at night?

The Chicken Lady

  • Joined Mar 2008
  • Cheshire
Re: how to look after orphan lambs
« Reply #3 on: March 08, 2009, 04:49:56 pm »
I reared a lamb last year and once she could jump out of the box I had her in she went into one of the out buildings. I set up a brooder lamp that I use for chicks so if she was cold she could go underneath that or move away if she was too warm. I would keep them indoors at the moment until there is some sun. To start with just let them out for short periods and then gradually increase the time.
Karen

Crofter

  • Joined Jan 2009
  • Isle of Lewis
  • We'll get there!
    • Ravenstar
Re: how to look after orphan lambs
« Reply #4 on: March 08, 2009, 06:23:12 pm »
Best to keep orphan lambs indoors for a few weeks at least.  Give them plenty of straw and they should not need heat unless it is very cold.  Unless you plan to be completely organic it is best to vaccinate them with something like Heptavac P against a variety of diseases as they will have got no immunity from their mothers. They'll need 2 doses, 4 to 6 weeks apart.  Good luck with them, we started our little flock 3 years ago with orphans and it's very rewarding.

Dave
Comfortable B&B on a working Croft on the Isle of Lewis. www.Ravenstar.co.uk

claireS

  • Joined Feb 2009
Re: how to look after orphan lambs
« Reply #5 on: March 08, 2009, 08:54:15 pm »
Thanks. OK so I'll have to put them in the garage for a bit. This may sound silly but how big a pen do u think they need (2 Lambs)? and do I need to put in any water if they are on the bottle?

Thanks Claire

woollyval

  • Joined Feb 2008
  • Near Bodmin, Cornwall
    • Val Grainger
Re: how to look after orphan lambs
« Reply #6 on: March 08, 2009, 09:19:21 pm »
You will need:-

4 x 6ft sheep hurdles....believe me they are a good investment
a hay rack as they should be offered good quality hay from a few days
some hay to go in it
some straw for the floor
small bucket for water....yes they should always have access to water
creep pellets.....very good idea to feed both creep and hay to develop the rumen.

Also go and spend ome time with anexperienced sheep keeper and learn as much as possible.....it will save a lot of heartache for you and will prevent problems occuring to the lambs through ignorance!
www.smallholdinginsomerset.blogspot.com
www.valgrainger.co.uk

Overall winner of the Devon Environmental Business Awards 2009

buddy

  • Joined Feb 2009
  • I really love my life, especially when its sunny
Re: how to look after orphan lambs
« Reply #7 on: March 10, 2009, 07:08:44 am »
Use the internet to read up on this too, bottle feds can get scours and bloat easily but are lovely.
Enjoying life making the most of whats available. My kids were little yesterday, today they are almost adults, where on earth did that change happen?

VSS

  • Joined Jan 2009
  • Pen Llyn
    • Viable Self Sufficiency.co.uk
Re: how to look after orphan lambs
« Reply #8 on: March 10, 2009, 08:17:03 am »
Use the internet to read up on this too, bottle feds can get scours and bloat easily but are lovely.

I think they are a pain in the neck!
The SHEEP Book for Smallholders
Available from the Good Life Press

www.viableselfsufficiency.co.uk

 
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