Smallholders Insurance from Greenlands

Author Topic: Pus Abscess on sheep's face  (Read 699 times)


  • Joined Aug 2015
Pus Abscess on sheep's face
« on: September 15, 2019, 05:18:26 pm »
Hi there,

Hoping someone may be able to offer some advice as typically, this has happened late afternoon on a Sunday!

We've got a 3 year old Ouessant wether (Ernie) who's had an abscess appear on the side of his face. He's got black wool so we noticed something creamy coloured which has turned out to be pus.  We managed to catch him  and we have squeezed as much of the pus out of the wound as possible and noted that it has no smell.  There appears to be what looks like a small puncture wound (or possibly this is just where the abscess has burst) and a little bit of blood then came from the wound as well.  We then sprayed the area with iodine spray.

Two photos attached - apologies for the one of the pus!!

His face doesn't look swollen and he doesn't appear unwell - he's running about and eating as usual but naturally, it's difficult not to worry.

We'll ring the vets in the morning ad guessing they might suggest Pen & Strep to be on the safe side but is there anything else that we should be doing tonight to help? 

Many thanks,


  • Joined Apr 2012
Re: Pus Abscess on sheep's face
« Reply #1 on: September 15, 2019, 06:21:01 pm »
I would isolate him from the rest of the flock and get the vet to test for CLA  :tired:  then disinfect where you burst the abscess to, just in case it is CLA.


  • Joined Feb 2017
  • Carmarthenshire
Re: Pus Abscess on sheep's face
« Reply #2 on: September 15, 2019, 07:18:56 pm »
I would syringe it out with salt water to make sure it was cleaned out and probably keep indoors if practical and give a long acting antibiotic. It may refill with pus or it may go totally.

I've had them before, usually after the sheep stick their heads through the stock fence to eat hedging and get cought/spiked in the blackthorn.


  • Joined May 2010
  • South Lanarkshire
    • Wester Gladstone Hebridean Sheep
Re: Pus Abscess on sheep's face
« Reply #3 on: September 16, 2019, 12:17:12 am »
I would agree with syringing it out (no needle) with salt water rather than squeezing it - by squeezing you are risking forcing pus and serous fluid back into the tissues. CLA causes thick, dryish  pus (caseous means cheesy) and it is worth getting the pus checked.  Difficult as you have already squeezed, but if the abscess refills then take a sample in a sterile pot to the vet.  Treat what has come out as infectious and wear gloves.
Here's hoping it's something benign.

Do something today that your future self will thank you for - plant a tree

Draco dormiens nunquam titillandus - let sleeping dragons lie


  • Joined Aug 2015
Re: Pus Abscess on sheep's face
« Reply #4 on: September 16, 2019, 09:13:25 am »
Thank you all so much for your advice.  Really interesting to learn about syringing out the pus and using salt water rather than squeezing it out - that makes complete sense.

He's up and about this morning and eating well so fingers crossed it won't be anything sinister.  We'll feel much better once we've been to the vets though. We've got an appt this afternoon so I'll let you all have an update later.

Thanks again for all your help


  • Joined Feb 2012
  • Somerset
Re: Pus Abscess on sheep's face
« Reply #5 on: September 19, 2019, 06:46:57 pm »
Hi Beeches,

How did you get on at the vets?


  • Joined Aug 2015
Re: Pus Abscess on sheep's face
« Reply #6 on: September 19, 2019, 09:40:31 pm »
Hi Possum,

I’m so sorry, I’ve been meaning to reply all week. Ernie is doing really well thank you.

Thankfully, the vet wasn’t too concerned and was confident that it’s not CLA. She removed the remaining pus and advised spraying with iodine morning and night to prevent infection, and also re-applying Spot On to help protect from flies. It’s healing really nicely and there’s been no further swelling or pus. It’s turned quite hot and sunny here today and as the wound is healing well, the vet was also happy for us to now apply some Battles yellow fly cream for some extra protection.

Thank you again to everyone for your help, I really am so grateful for the amazing advice and support.


Face abscess

Started by Womble

Replies: 33
Views: 7555
Last post March 13, 2018, 09:36:23 am
by Marches Farmer
Draining an abscess on the face

Started by twizzel

Replies: 8
Views: 4666
Last post March 14, 2013, 10:46:01 am
by twizzel
Sheep with abscess on upper jaw, advise please

Started by detnol

Replies: 9
Views: 2990
Last post February 13, 2015, 12:48:42 pm
by detnol
Badger Face Sheep

Started by Ellen

Replies: 1
Views: 1637
Last post March 28, 2010, 06:43:59 pm
by VSS
Badger Face Sheep

Started by Sunnybank

Replies: 7
Views: 5032
Last post April 23, 2012, 01:15:07 pm
by suziequeue

Forum sponsors

FibreHut Energy Helpline Thomson & Morgan Time for Paws Scottish Smallholder & Grower Festival Ark Farm Livestock Movement Service

© The Accidental Smallholder Ltd 2003-2020. All rights reserved.

Design by Furness Internet

Site developed by Champion IS