Smallholders Insurance from Greenlands

Author Topic: aging yowe aging faster  (Read 8156 times)


  • Joined Nov 2017
aging yowe aging faster
« on: April 06, 2024, 06:58:58 pm »
I know you are all in the midst of new life not late in life re the sheep lifecycle at the mo but one of my first rescue north ronaldsays has gone downhill and im not used to geriatric care so dont know if what im seeing is aging or illness (fyi am on island and no vet due out "for the forseeable")
Daisy is now 10 (which to my mind is not old for a NR) Howver my first ever rescue NR< Baby,died last year aged 10 so i am feeling like deja vue. She had fluid in the abdomen, went off food and did not respond to any treatments of liver flukicide, copper, antibiotics, multi vits, pain relief.
Daisy has suffered arthiritis signs for a few years and been on loxicom but yesterday i caught the young castrates terrorising her- she was desperately running away (and she never runs)- i had to catch her up and fend off her attackers! She was penned overnight but she only wants to eat treats, and seems to want to lie down a lot- is that ok? Nothing wrong with teeth, chewed the cud, peed and pooed, breathing normal now not being harrassed but i opened pen to let her out (supervised) and she took one look outside and went back in barn. Do i assume geriatrics just want to lie down a lot, and dont want to be hassled by the younger ones? I dont want to inject her for things she dont need as she hates injections (she holds a grudge!!) and i just want to keep her comfortable. I dont want to be a hypchondriac but i dont want to miss something obvious either (i mean i tend to find sheep attack others in the flock when they are unwell)...Any advise from elderly sheep keepers...?


  • Joined May 2010
  • South Lanarkshire
    • ScotHebs
Re: aging yowe aging faster
« Reply #1 on: April 07, 2024, 12:53:19 am »
She's certainly not geriatric at 10 - we breed our Hebs up to 16 if they are fit and our oldest ewes have lived to 20.
You say teeth are ok but have you checked the molars? Once they start to go, that really is the end.  Also a sheep can get an abscess or overgrown spikey back teeth which cause a lot of pain and stop the sheep from eating.
Another thing to check is her eyes for cataracts.  We always seem to have one ancient biddy who goes blind but does perfectly well.  Elfie our current old blind lady lives in her own paddock but within sound of the flock and she manages really well.  We give her extra 'tup and lamb' all year (never pencils  or rolls), otherwise just good grass and she doesn't bother with hay. For treats we give digestive biscuits, as they have a bit of sugar plus some roughage and a good 'crunch'. Also we give willow branches for leaves and bark, but the whole flock gets those.

I'm sure others will come up with ideas.
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  • Joined Nov 2017
Re: aging yowe aging faster
« Reply #2 on: April 07, 2024, 09:56:46 am »
yep her same aged "sister" Poppy does not have arthiritis symptoms and is lively as ever at 10, but Daisy just seems to have been affected early on-and her mobilty suffers for it.
Daisy has had liver fluke symptoms in the past (as did Baby) but Poppy never has- maybe the liver damage, despite treatment and preventative treatments is doing this? (i say "symptoms" as had Morden run tests on fecal samples but no fluke found...) Yet they recovered after fluke treatment.
havent felt molars but she loves dried pasta twists and i imagined she wouldnt be crunching through them with bad molars.....
10 seems to be my limit- i need to get past it once! Munchin the pure Southdown again died just before 10 -went blind and deaf and off her legs in quick succession.... tbh i kept her going longer as a "bedbound gal" as she never lost her appetite: and would sit with her mouth open waiting for the next morsel to be offered, and would shout me for breakfast (barn is attached to house)
Ill try stronger pain relief and some multi vits (she will hate me) and see what happens...


  • Joined Nov 2017
Re: aging yowe aging faster
« Reply #3 on: April 08, 2024, 03:07:24 pm »
quick update. finally the castrates have left her alone and the pain relief has kicked in and she is out grazing with them all again- without the need for any injections!
i wonder if she was in season (never been bred, but usually i recognise her in season as she pesters the old (now castrated) ram!

thanks anyways


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