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Author Topic: How to get an older lamb on the bottle after loosing it's mother?  (Read 14737 times)

SallyintNorth

  • Joined Feb 2011
  • Cornwall
  • Rarely short of an opinion but I mean well
    • Trelay Cohousing Community
Re: How to get an older lamb on the bottle after loosing it's mother?
« Reply #15 on: April 19, 2014, 01:42:27 am »
to spend hours . stressing the lamb ,risk of choking ,risk of pneumonia if it breaths in milk you are trying to pour down it throat .stressin you and heart ache just no worth it . if it doesnt take it within a couple of days i would leave it ,as long as its eating well . it will need a bit more creep or will take a bit longer to finish .
 a more commercial point of view you would be as well selling a slightly lighter lamb for say 50 than spend lots hours ,milk powder etc to get an extra 10 or 20

I don't spend hours.  I spend a few minutes each feed time.  If it doesn't drink, it doesn't drink.  But I keep offering.  Not stressing.  Calm, quiet, firm but gentle and kind.  They nearly always do come round.

From a commercial point of view a healthier lamb that finishes sooner and resists disease better is always worth a little bit of effort. ;)

I wouldn't be so bothered with a fit lamb eating plenty of cake if it's 5 weeks old or older.  But a younger lamb, or one not eating much cake, or not very fit, then I would want it to have a good couple of weeks on milk to help it through the stress of the change in its circumstances.
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

langfauld easycare

  • Joined Apr 2012
Re: How to get an older lamb on the bottle after loosing it's mother?
« Reply #16 on: April 19, 2014, 08:15:19 am »
i dont no how to do the quote thing on this .i agree it would be better to get it drinking for a few more weeks but the point i was trying to make is at 4 weeks it wont starve to death if it doesnt(some never will) . if the lambs standing rigid there is no point forcing it . i do find if there was a couple of others on a bucket  they were more likely to join in on it .   


Ladygrey

  • Joined Jun 2012
  • Basingstoke
Re: How to get an older lamb on the bottle after loosing it's mother?
« Reply #17 on: April 19, 2014, 08:47:43 am »
Thats really terrible Rachel  :bouquet: I know you dont want to talk about it so I wont say any more on here, but I really do feel for you.

I had 6 orphan lambs 2 years ago who were successfully weaned at 3 weeks of age, all texel crosses...oh wait a sec you have two of them now

They were out in the field from 2 weeks of age and I was struggling to capture them at 3 weeks for a bottle so I just stopped, they all did fine and dandy  :thumbsup: they ate plenty of creep which I weaned off them at 6 weeks of age and after that they only had grass.

I would try next time to keep them on milk for 5 weeks but just goes to show 3 weeks at weaning didnt kill them and they all thrived

Goodluck

xxx

SallyintNorth

  • Joined Feb 2011
  • Cornwall
  • Rarely short of an opinion but I mean well
    • Trelay Cohousing Community
Re: How to get an older lamb on the bottle after loosing it's mother?
« Reply #18 on: April 19, 2014, 09:10:57 am »
We could do with one of the vets giving an authoritative input here, but my understanding is that the rumen isn't fully developed until 6 weeks, so although they can get by from earlier than that without milk, for optimum health they should have milk up to 6 weeks.
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

SallyintNorth

  • Joined Feb 2011
  • Cornwall
  • Rarely short of an opinion but I mean well
    • Trelay Cohousing Community
Re: How to get an older lamb on the bottle after loosing it's mother?
« Reply #19 on: April 19, 2014, 09:18:02 am »
i dont no how to do the quote thing on this

There's a forum tip about 'doing the quote thing' .  However I don't know if it is still correct for all interfaces - it still works like this for me :)
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

Ladygrey

  • Joined Jun 2012
  • Basingstoke
Re: How to get an older lamb on the bottle after loosing it's mother?
« Reply #20 on: April 19, 2014, 09:19:32 am »
Yup milk up to 6 weeks is of course the best, but bottle fed lambs can have a higher incidence of dropping dead from redgut if not weaned around 5 weeks, so if they are taking in a large amount of barley straw/hay/creep at 5 weeks I would rather wean early before one drops dead


langfauld easycare

  • Joined Apr 2012
Re: How to get an older lamb on the bottle after loosing it's mother?
« Reply #21 on: April 19, 2014, 09:43:07 am »
We could do with one of the vets giving an authoritative input here, but my understanding is that the rumen isn't fully developed until 6 weeks, so although they can get by from earlier than that without milk, for optimum health they should have milk up to 6 weeks.
:wave: haha look at me quoting  . again agree. the old directions when i was young (not yesterday)used to be to wean from 4 weeks .that has now changed to 6 . but all the lambs  bottle reared 20 odd years ago would have been weaned at 4 . a five kilo pail of dried milk was 5(my full pocket money) which was enough for each lamb .bigger bags were cheaper .gave them adlib corsemix

Hellybee

  • Joined Feb 2010
    • www.blaengwawrponies.co.uk
Re: How to get an older lamb on the bottle after loosing it's mother?
« Reply #22 on: April 19, 2014, 09:51:15 am »
If an older lamb from experience if eating cake and hay and drinking water nicely we woul d leave be, from the experience  a lamb that had got in with another flock and then not retrieved til that flock was gathered (we did try to catch the little mite but couldnt) we tried to get her on the milk but all it did was make her scour lots, so then we had to solve that, so in hindsight regardless of size, if they ve weaned, no point going backwards.   but a few weeks old, different situation, like sally i woul d persevere,tiny steps, i find that it takes three to four tries on average for them to get the jist, then we re away.  not about forcing but mothering and  cajolling  xx

waterbuffalofarmer

  • Joined Apr 2014
  • Mid Wales
  • Owner of 61 Mediterranean water buffaloes
Re: How to get an older lamb on the bottle after loosing it's mother?
« Reply #23 on: April 20, 2014, 10:56:59 am »
Hi
I would say if you have any ewes with a single lamb which is similar age to them, then it might be a good idea to adopt the lamb onto the other ewe.
Hope this helps
the most beautiful people we have known are those who have known defeat, known suffering, known struggle, known loss and have found their way out of the depths. These persons have an appreciation, a sensitivity and an understanding of life that fills them with compassion, gentleness, loving concern.

Hillview Farm

  • Joined Dec 2012
  • Surrey
  • Proud owner of sheep and Llamas!
Re: How to get an older lamb on the bottle after loosing it's mother?
« Reply #24 on: April 20, 2014, 03:02:09 pm »
I don't think I stand a chance of any of my ewes allowing a lamb on at a month old to adopt on and I doubt the lamb would accept her anyway! She's eating cake and hay and the water is going down, she has around 100 ml four times a day and seems fine apart from having extremely strong wee!

waterbuffalofarmer

  • Joined Apr 2014
  • Mid Wales
  • Owner of 61 Mediterranean water buffaloes
Re: How to get an older lamb on the bottle after loosing it's mother?
« Reply #25 on: April 20, 2014, 04:58:50 pm »
thats good and all the best of luck.
the most beautiful people we have known are those who have known defeat, known suffering, known struggle, known loss and have found their way out of the depths. These persons have an appreciation, a sensitivity and an understanding of life that fills them with compassion, gentleness, loving concern.

Penninehillbilly

  • Joined Sep 2011
  • West Yorks
Re: How to get an older lamb on the bottle after loosing it's mother?
« Reply #26 on: April 20, 2014, 05:51:55 pm »
Sorry to hear about the dog - bl''dy owners! hope that part of the problem gets sorted.
 
I took a couple of lambs on, they were much younger, but I really tried for days to get one to feed, I'd back her (and me) into a corner and get her to take a bit, she lost all her wool(?) and other problems, I thought 'while she's alive I'll keep trying', one day she just clicked on and after that she was the first there, grew into a big hefty girl.
Trouble is now she's a darn nuisance and wants attention every time she sees me!
Did I read somewher if you rub or tickle above the tail that encourages them cos that's where the mum would nuzzle?

twizzel

  • Joined Apr 2012
Re: How to get an older lamb on the bottle after loosing it's mother?
« Reply #27 on: April 20, 2014, 10:27:35 pm »
Yup milk up to 6 weeks is of course the best, but bottle fed lambs can have a higher incidence of dropping dead from redgut if not weaned around 5 weeks, so if they are taking in a large amount of barley straw/hay/creep at 5 weeks I would rather wean early before one drops dead

I agree, if the lamb is being awkward I would get it eating hay and creep ad lib. I wean my tame lambs at 6 weeks, although my last group from this year were weaned a week earlier as I lost one at bang on 5 weeks to bloat/redgut the day before I was going to cut down on milk... sods law...

 

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