NFU Mutual Smallholding Insurance

Author Topic: rearing lambs  (Read 4111 times)

kate. x

  • Joined May 2012
  • west yorkshire
rearing lambs
« on: May 03, 2012, 07:55:45 pm »
 :sheep: hi any chance someone out there could give me a few tips?? I find myself hand rearing 2 lambs. I have no experience at all!! 1 is doing fairly well, the other I am struggling to get milk down, ideas????? The other puzzling thing is they are both 'scratching 'them selves like dogs ,  I am thinking fleas?? I havent seen any though. HELP??!! any ideas would be appreciated. Kate
3 dogs,2 tortoises, 6 cats 4 hens 4 Belgians, 2 lambs,, 2 rabbits, fish, the list goes on!!!
Voss Electric Fence

Moleskins

  • Joined Sep 2009
  • England
Re: rearing lambs
« Reply #1 on: May 03, 2012, 10:51:06 pm »
Firstly good luck, you're going to need it, bottle fed lambs love to die.
I don't normally say this but a trip to the vet might be in order to assess the itching.
Dependant on age tube feeding is sometimes the way to get milk into them,
otherwise put your finger in the lambs mouth and then swap it for the teat,
I've got one and you literally had to force feed it. Still not keen on a bottle.
Once they do get the hang of it they will be all over you.
Also inject for clostridial diseases at 3+ weeks
Time flies like an arrow but fruit flies like a banana.

Old Shep

  • Joined Feb 2011
  • North Yorkshire
Re: rearing lambs
« Reply #2 on: May 03, 2012, 11:07:02 pm »
Moleskins would you inject with Heptevac_p or whatever earlier for a pet lamb than a lamb on a ewe?
Helen - (used to be just Shep).  Gordon Setters, Border Collies and chief lambing assistant to BigBennyShep.

plumseverywhere

  • Joined Apr 2013
  • Worcestershire
    • Its Baaath Time
    • Facebook
Re: rearing lambs
« Reply #3 on: May 04, 2012, 07:44:13 am »
How old are they? do you know anything of their start -ie. did they have colostrum?

our 3 this year have thrived, we've been lucky. we knew that they'd had 24 hours colostrum via the farmer and that their mums had been given heptavac P prior to lambing, this meant we could give them their first dose at 4 weeks.
Would get the itching checked though.
Smallholding in Worcestershire, making goats milk soap for www.itsbaaathtime.com and mum to 4 girls,  goats, sheep, chickens, dog, cat and garden snails...

Moleskins

  • Joined Sep 2009
  • England
Re: rearing lambs
« Reply #4 on: May 04, 2012, 08:32:21 am »
Moleskins would you inject with Heptevac_p or whatever earlier for a pet lamb than a lamb on a ewe?
I wouldn't give it earlier than 3 weeks, but I'd be hoping that the ewe had been injected prior to
the lamb being born and that the lamb had received colostrum at the outset.
The leaflet with Heptavac  does say not suitable for lambs younger than 3 weeks.
Time flies like an arrow but fruit flies like a banana.

Remy

  • Joined Dec 2011
Re: rearing lambs
« Reply #5 on: May 04, 2012, 09:49:48 am »
Orphan lambs can be a challenge to get to accept the bottle, it's usually a case of perseverance, and can take a week or more!  I have three this year, and initially had to force them to take the teat - even then they would suck feebly or not at all and it would take ages to get 100ml into them.  If they are reluctant then put a finger into the side of the mouth to open it, slide the teat in and hold it there but not so you are putting too much pressure on the nose. 

With mine I was worried about them dropping off weight so put out some creep feed for them.  One of the orphans was my own bred lamb who nearly died with hypothermia and by the time he'd recovered his mum wouldn't take him back, so he was the quickest to get the hang of suckling.  Then another one suddenly developed a taste for it, but the third didn't seem interested - however, I kept offering it to her.

Now the three of them are like milking machines, they can't get enough or get it down fast enough!!  They also eat grass and creep and I've had to stop the creep as two of them are beginning to look like blimps.

Re. the itching, do you mean just scratching themselves occasionally with their hind legs - most lambs do this.  If it's all the time then I'd suspect some skin problem and probably best to get vet advice.
1 horse, 2 ponies, 4 dogs, 2 Kune Kunes, a variety of sheep

kate. x

  • Joined May 2012
  • west yorkshire
Re: rearing lambs
« Reply #6 on: May 04, 2012, 12:41:04 pm »
Oh thank you everyone. It is such a relief to speak to people who know what they are doing!!
 It is just the occasional itch not all the time, no sign of skin problems. If gets worse or continues I will take a vets advice.
The one that wasn't feeding just took 9oz straight off this morning,  :thumbs up:but when just tried to re feed would only take an onze!!! Blimey! My chickens are so much easier!!! I haven't a clue why he wont take it now???
 
They have both had the squits and both had a shot of antibiotics, 3 days ago. Their poos now are much more formed.
They both had manufactured colostrum, the one I am struggling with nearly died of hypothermia,

I have put water down for them.
Thanks everyone please keep those suggestions coming, really appreciated
3 dogs,2 tortoises, 6 cats 4 hens 4 Belgians, 2 lambs,, 2 rabbits, fish, the list goes on!!!

kate. x

  • Joined May 2012
  • west yorkshire
Re: rearing lambs
« Reply #7 on: May 04, 2012, 12:53:04 pm »
PS

have read something about a recipe for home made colostrum?? with raw eggs and milk and olive oil, the advice was to give when born but then also repeat with more of the home  made stuff after a week to boost the gut bacteria????  ??? ???

3 dogs,2 tortoises, 6 cats 4 hens 4 Belgians, 2 lambs,, 2 rabbits, fish, the list goes on!!!

plumseverywhere

  • Joined Apr 2013
  • Worcestershire
    • Its Baaath Time
    • Facebook
Re: rearing lambs
« Reply #8 on: May 04, 2012, 01:36:43 pm »
What is 9oz in Mls?  They only have tiny tummies when they are very little lambs so it might be too much?  If I recall correctly, we were giving a maximum of 1400mls of Lamlac (or whatever the bag said!) split over however many feeds they were on. Started on 4 feeds (crack of dawn and last one nearly midnight) then 3 feeds etc.

You might be just as well using one of those probiotic yogurts in the milk replacer rather than trying to make up colostrum at this stage. A lot of this just depends on how old the lambs are?

Smallholding in Worcestershire, making goats milk soap for www.itsbaaathtime.com and mum to 4 girls,  goats, sheep, chickens, dog, cat and garden snails...

kate. x

  • Joined May 2012
  • west yorkshire
Re: rearing lambs
« Reply #9 on: May 04, 2012, 03:32:52 pm »
Hi> 9oz is 300ml (ish)  1 is 8 days, one is 10days.  the older of the 2 is taking it just fine. but the younger one is taking about half what I think he probably should.

if i put in some probiotic would i put a whole pot in the bottle or ???? I am just trying everything to help the little one that I can try.

should say both look well, alert playing in garden.

ta for help





I had been told to give bout
3 dogs,2 tortoises, 6 cats 4 hens 4 Belgians, 2 lambs,, 2 rabbits, fish, the list goes on!!!

Moleskins

  • Joined Sep 2009
  • England
Re: rearing lambs
« Reply #10 on: May 04, 2012, 03:55:51 pm »
According to my bag of milk powder they should be having about 250ml 4 times a day.
This will depend on breed though, one of my primitive breeds is taking nowhere near that,
but I do think she's sneaking in for a bit off a ewe if she can get away with it.
Time flies like an arrow but fruit flies like a banana.

SallyintNorth

  • Joined Feb 2011
  • Cornwall
  • Rarely short of an opinion but I mean well
Re: rearing lambs
« Reply #11 on: May 04, 2012, 05:19:21 pm »
According to my bag of milk powder they should be having about 250ml 4 times a day.

Different products have different guidelines - the one I use is 'up to 1L per day per lamb' but some others (and I think Lamlac is one such) are 'up to 1.5L'.
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 cow, beef cattle, pigs, sheep for meat and fleece, ducks and hens for eggs, veg and fruit growing

 
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