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Author Topic: How long to leave a ewe?  (Read 6896 times)

moprabbit

  • Joined Oct 2011
  • North Notts
How long to leave a ewe?
« on: March 25, 2013, 05:16:45 pm »
I'm helping a friend with lambing. One of his ewes has been showing signs of being in labour for most of the day - restless, walking around etc. About one and a half hours ago she started lying down,getting up, digging etc and we thought she'd soon lamb - but as yet nothing. The water bag appeared then disappeared. I just wondered how long we should  leave her before we intervene? Thanks
4 pet sheep
Voss Electric Fence

Foobar

  • Joined Mar 2012
  • South Wales
Re: How long to leave a ewe?
« Reply #1 on: March 25, 2013, 05:22:56 pm »
I would give her 45mins to 1hr after the water bag appears, then have an exploratory look.


Is she actively straining now?


(The "pre-amble" before the water bag appears can go on all day, but it's when the water bag appears that means that lambing is imminent.)
« Last Edit: March 25, 2013, 05:25:52 pm by foobar »

colliewoman

  • Global Moderator
  • Joined Jul 2011
  • Pilton
  • Caution! May spontaneously talk rabbits!
Re: How long to leave a ewe?
« Reply #2 on: March 25, 2013, 05:23:14 pm »
Hmmm  If the water bag has showed a while ago and still nothing I personally would have a gentle feel.
Good luck :fc:
We'll turn the dust to soil,
Turn the rust of hate back into passion.
It's not water into wine
But it's here, and it's happening.
Massive,
but passive.


Bring the peace back

moprabbit

  • Joined Oct 2011
  • North Notts
Re: How long to leave a ewe?
« Reply #3 on: March 25, 2013, 05:26:02 pm »
The water bag showed then popped back inside - should I have a feel even if the water bag is still inside? Thanks
4 pet sheep

SallyintNorth

  • Joined Feb 2011
  • Cornwall
  • Rarely short of an opinion but I mean well
Re: How long to leave a ewe?
« Reply #4 on: March 25, 2013, 05:29:50 pm »
It maybe wasn't the water bag but was the lamb sac.  I'd definitely have a gentle feel.
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

colliewoman

  • Global Moderator
  • Joined Jul 2011
  • Pilton
  • Caution! May spontaneously talk rabbits!
Re: How long to leave a ewe?
« Reply #5 on: March 25, 2013, 05:39:17 pm »
My thoughts are that so long as you are Very clean, very gentle and use lots of lube then you are unlikely to do any harm.
Should there me a malpresentation, if left this WILL cause problems. Gently does it and you will not harm the ewe or the lamb (if the lamb is alive), The presence of anything from the vulva IMO means something has started  ;)
We'll turn the dust to soil,
Turn the rust of hate back into passion.
It's not water into wine
But it's here, and it's happening.
Massive,
but passive.


Bring the peace back

moprabbit

  • Joined Oct 2011
  • North Notts
Re: How long to leave a ewe?
« Reply #6 on: March 25, 2013, 07:46:19 pm »
I did intervene - a gentle feel and there were 2 feet and a head - a gentle pull and out popped 1 healthy lamb. Another feel and there was the 2nd lamb - correctly positioned - another gentle pull, and out popped another healthy lamb!!
Why Mum was making all the fuss I don't know... anyway thanks for the help I appreciated it and was able to act on it with confidence. Thank you!
4 pet sheep

MrsJ

  • Joined Jan 2009
Re: How long to leave a ewe?
« Reply #7 on: March 25, 2013, 07:51:53 pm »
Hurrah for a happy ending!

colliewoman

  • Global Moderator
  • Joined Jul 2011
  • Pilton
  • Caution! May spontaneously talk rabbits!
Re: How long to leave a ewe?
« Reply #8 on: March 25, 2013, 07:52:44 pm »
 :thumbsup: :thumbsup: :thumbsup: :thumbsup: YAY!!!!! :sheep: :sheep: :sheep:
We'll turn the dust to soil,
Turn the rust of hate back into passion.
It's not water into wine
But it's here, and it's happening.
Massive,
but passive.


Bring the peace back

domsmith

  • Joined Aug 2012
  • sanquhar, dumfries and galloway
    • sunnyside farm
Re: How long to leave a ewe?
« Reply #9 on: March 25, 2013, 08:01:56 pm »
I am surprised by how cautious you all are!!

If you are worried follow your instincts and get stuck in, get the lamb out. that's what lambings all about....isnt it?

I outdoor lamb and its all about letting nature get on with it, but when it doesnt, dont have any regrets and think i should have done this or that.  i just do it.

I would be interested to know what harm you could do by pulling a lamb out.
i will always deliver the second lamb if i deliver the first, get the intrusion over with, does any body else do that?

dominic

Sbom

  • Joined Jul 2012
  • Staffordshire
Re: How long to leave a ewe?
« Reply #10 on: March 25, 2013, 08:07:46 pm »
The problem occurs if you try and pull one out to soon and the head goes back, which can be a nightmare to rectify. Saying that i always examine if I think something is amiss, if the lambs just there then out it comes, if its way down but straight I'd wait and observe a while longer. You should trust your instincts and as dominic says don't be afraid to get stuck in! It's the best way to learn.
Glad for a happy ending  :thumbsup:

SallyintNorth

  • Joined Feb 2011
  • Cornwall
  • Rarely short of an opinion but I mean well
Re: How long to leave a ewe?
« Reply #11 on: March 25, 2013, 08:09:37 pm »
i will always deliver the second lamb if i deliver the first, get the intrusion over with, does any body else do that?
BH does.  He's a commercial farmer, we only lamb 300-ish these days; in his heyday it was twice that number.  When you have that number, of course you make sure #2 is okay while you're there; it could be some hours before you get back to this particular ewe.

When it's smallholder / small flocks, part of what we are doing is trying to keep things as natural and stressfree as possible - so unless she needs intervention, we'd avoid intervening.

Having said which, if #1 was stuck and needed help, then I'd be inclined to get #2 out straight away too, in case it had got into any strife while being held up by the logjam.  ;)

The danger with being gungho about it is that inexperienced sheepkeepers would be in there all the time, introducing infection, bruising mum's insides, etc.  So vets generally advise patience and caution.

When you're experienced and have developed judgement of when something's amiss, then of course you just get stuck in when necessary.  (But not otherwise.;) )
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

colliewoman

  • Global Moderator
  • Joined Jul 2011
  • Pilton
  • Caution! May spontaneously talk rabbits!
Re: How long to leave a ewe?
« Reply #12 on: March 25, 2013, 08:13:07 pm »
I am surprised by how cautious you all are!!




Note that most people who responded are ladies, this means we are the owner of ladies bits. This also means we are as obliged to be as cautious about our ewes ladies bits as you men are about Steve and the twins.


When men can poo a watermelon they get an opinion regarding parturition  ;) ;D ;D ;D 




ETA Please take this in with the sense of humour it was intended :eyelashes: :eyelashes:

We'll turn the dust to soil,
Turn the rust of hate back into passion.
It's not water into wine
But it's here, and it's happening.
Massive,
but passive.


Bring the peace back

Sbom

  • Joined Jul 2012
  • Staffordshire
Re: How long to leave a ewe?
« Reply #13 on: March 25, 2013, 08:18:12 pm »
To right CW!
Since having children I've been a lot more considerate when assisting anything! I have seen some real rough handling of lambings by blokes and can't help but think if they'd been through it.............  :tired:

farmerjim

  • Joined Dec 2011
Re: How long to leave a ewe?
« Reply #14 on: March 26, 2013, 10:01:08 am »
I agree with Sally, sheep take time to lamb and one and ahalf hours is no time,mine are usually 4-5 after getting up laying down etc.Its not so much having the confidence to intervene its having the confidence and experience to knowwhen not to.Pleased everything  went well.

 

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