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Author Topic: When is too late to vaccinate pregnant ewes?  (Read 751 times)


  • Joined May 2024
When is too late to vaccinate pregnant ewes?
« on: May 14, 2024, 05:00:21 pm »
I'm taking over a farm that has been a bit of a mess and while I did grow up on a farm, I am still learning all the long term management skills and responsibilities. Right now the ewes are about to lamb (though perhaps not for another week since the ram was lame when he arrived) and I've just realised they didn't get their heptavac booster this year. They're very used to being handled so I could probably vaccinate them with minimal stress but I don't know if that would give enough time for the defence to be passed on to the lambs. Should I try and vaccinate the ewes asap? And if not, what can I do to keep the lambs as healthy as possible before they are old enough to get their first vaccines? How soon could I vaccinate them?

Thanks for any advice!


  • Joined Feb 2011
  • Cornwall
  • Rarely short of an opinion but I mean well
    • Trelay Cohousing Community
Re: When is too late to vaccinate pregnant ewes?
« Reply #1 on: May 25, 2024, 04:39:16 pm »
Sorry you didn't get any responses before now.  For some reason, this didn't come up in my "unread posts" feed until now.

The official line would probably be that they need their annual booster anyway or will have to go back to two jags to reinstate immunity next year, but in practise I personally think it doesn't hurt them to skip a year once in a while once they're on the system, and yes they won't have that additional boost to the antigens in the colostrum but they won't have no antigens, so the lambs will probably be fine.

The advice about vaccinating lambs is to not do it before 3 weeks old if they're from vaccinated mothers, as the vaccine will interfere with the immunity derived from the maternal antigens. 

Don't listen to the money men - they know the price of everything and the value of nothing

Live in a cohousing community with small farm for our own use.  Dairy cows (rearing their own calves for beef), pigs, sheep for meat and fleece, ducks and hens for eggs, veg and fruit growing


  • Joined Jan 2011
  • Dumfries & Galloway
Re: When is too late to vaccinate pregnant ewes?
« Reply #2 on: May 25, 2024, 05:53:51 pm »
Didn't see  your post either , just buy a bottle and do all the ewes and lambs together when the youngest is 2wks old oe in 2 batches if very protacted lambing


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