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Author Topic: query re sheep sitting position!  (Read 336 times)

vegpatch

  • Joined Oct 2016
query re sheep sitting position!
« on: November 18, 2019, 10:47:05 am »
Possibly a bit of a daft question but we're new to sheep so I'll go ahead and ask it anyway.  One of our ewe lambs has started sitting propped up on her front legs with her back legs to one side as when lying down.  She doesn't do it all the time and continues to cud while she's doing it, is perky and alert, eating, not scouring, so in all other ways her usual self.  Have we just got a weird sheep or should I be concerned?  Needless to say every time I try to get a picture of her doing it she hops up and comes trotting over ever hopeful that something nice is coming her way.
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bj_cardiff

  • Joined Feb 2017
  • Carmarthenshire
Re: query re sheep sitting position!
« Reply #1 on: November 18, 2019, 11:33:07 am »
I wonder if it has a back issue? I wouldn't worry to much about it though if the lamb is grazing, cudding etc fine. I did have one that had a back issue and as he grew it became progressively worse until he would graze and his back half would slowly start to slump to the side. I had to cull him :(

vegpatch

  • Joined Oct 2016
Re: query re sheep sitting position!
« Reply #2 on: November 18, 2019, 12:03:47 pm »
Sorry about your sheep b_j Cardiff - that sounds miserable.  We'll keep an eye on her - fingers crossed she's just weird.

Twotwo

  • Joined Aug 2015
Re: query re sheep sitting position!
« Reply #3 on: November 18, 2019, 03:07:29 pm »
We had a ewe that would do this and then roll over backwards- landing upside down on her back - very funny to watch but of course not good as they get stuck and die  !! We kept an eye on her, as did half the village but in the end had to let her go as sometimes she did it twice a day ...

Me

  • Joined Feb 2014
  • Wild West
Re: query re sheep sitting position!
« Reply #4 on: November 18, 2019, 10:39:02 pm »
Probably just fat. All my Charmoise sit this way when fat

Fleecewife

  • Joined May 2010
  • South Lanarkshire
    • Wester Gladstone Hebridean Sheep
Re: query re sheep sitting position!
« Reply #5 on: November 19, 2019, 12:49:04 pm »
Probably just fat. All my Charmoise sit this way when fat


Yes, I've seen big fat tups at shows sit that way in their pens.
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vegpatch

  • Joined Oct 2016
Re: query re sheep sitting position!
« Reply #6 on: November 19, 2019, 01:35:02 pm »
I guess the idea that she might be fat is reassuring :-\  She's a Cotswold/Dorset cross so, as a complete beginner, I'm finding it a little challenging to condition score her - I'm well in past my wrists before I can even feel the sheep inside her fleece - she looks a bit like a little woolly coffee table. If she is a bit fat is that OK as we head into winter - she doesn't look big enough to send off yet (noticeably smaller than the other 2) and they're currently on grass only.

Fleecewife

  • Joined May 2010
  • South Lanarkshire
    • Wester Gladstone Hebridean Sheep
Re: query re sheep sitting position!
« Reply #7 on: November 19, 2019, 05:09:25 pm »
I don't think it's a diagnosis that she's fat, just an observation.  Could be anything.  Are they too big to weigh on the bathroom scales, you holding them and subtracting your weight?  That way you would have an accurate comparison.  Otherwise persevere with the condition scoring, by opening the fleece to the skin before you feel for bones.
www.scothebs.co.uk

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

Draco dormiens nunquam titillandus - let sleeping dragons lie

Womble

  • Joined Mar 2009
  • Stirlingshire, Central Scotland
Re: query re sheep sitting position!
« Reply #8 on: November 19, 2019, 06:50:28 pm »

I don't know if this is helpful, but my mistake when I started condition scoring was to not use enough pressure. Also, I was only pressing down onto the top of the backbone, not around the side of the 'short ribs'.


I'd encourage you to really dig in there and try to put your hand around the side (and actually underneath the short ribs on a thin sheep) as well as on top. You might find that makes a significant difference?
"All fungi are edible. Some fungi are only edible once." -Terry Pratchett

vegpatch

  • Joined Oct 2016
Re: query re sheep sitting position!
« Reply #9 on: November 20, 2019, 09:30:30 am »
  Are they too big to weigh on the bathroom scales, you holding them and subtracting your weight?  That way you would have an accurate comparison.  Otherwise persevere with the condition scoring, by opening the fleece to the skin before you feel for bones.

Thanks FW and Womble. She's definitely too big for me to pick up - and too wriggly!  I'll be firmer in my approach to feeling for the short ribs and getting through her fleece - will be useful for the other ewe lamb who has an even longer fleece.
« Last Edit: November 20, 2019, 09:33:09 am by vegpatch »

 

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