Smallholders Insurance from Greenlands

Author Topic: lamb tails!  (Read 5163 times)

roddycm

  • Joined Jul 2013
lamb tails!
« on: August 25, 2013, 12:25:47 am »
Hello all :)

I have always ringed my labs at a cpl of days old but I have just been given two ewe lambs which a lady had purchased as orphans to hand rear... After three weeks she decided she couldn't cope so I have taken them on. They are between 3 wks and a month old. Its not the end of the world of course but I'd rather they were docked... I suddenly realised that in all my years I've never had to dock an older lamb... Doers anyone know if its still possible at this age? Is it more hassle and discomfort for them than its worth or can a vet just lop them off!? I feel it would be a bit mean to ring them now! Thoughts?

Thanking you!

smudger

  • Joined Jan 2012
  • North Devon/ West Exmoor
Re: lamb tails!
« Reply #1 on: August 25, 2013, 01:13:07 am »
Legally it has to be done within 7 days. Doesn't mean it isn't done. It is more likely they will 'suffer' more given they are more developed. Is it necessary. if you only have a few sheep, keep on top of dagging / worm control?
Traditional and Rare breed livestock -  Golden Guernsey Goats, Blackmoor Flock Shetland and Lleyn Sheep, Pilgrim Geese and Norfolk Black Turkeys. Capallisky Irish Sport Horse Stud.

roddycm

  • Joined Jul 2013
Re: lamb tails!
« Reply #2 on: August 25, 2013, 01:36:26 am »
I usually keep to about 20 breeding ewes and a cpl of ewe lambs which I keep as replacements. These two girls are of course incredibly tame so I will have no problems with dagging if needed. I wanted to know the legality and now I do I guess I'll just let them keep their tails haha! Thanks for the info!

Anke

  • Joined Dec 2009
  • St Boswells, Scottish Borders
Re: lamb tails!
« Reply #3 on: August 25, 2013, 07:12:31 am »
Well quite a few of the hill breed keep their tails, and I have some cross ewes with some Swaledale in them, and the breeder decided to keep their tails... it has never caused any problems and they are not any more prone to flystrike than my short-tailed ones.
 
I wouldn't worry about it, and as they are tame you can easily dag their tails in early spring, apply some Clik early on too.

henchard

  • Joined Dec 2010
  • Carmarthenshire
    • Two Retirees Start a New Life in Wales
    • Facebook
Re: lamb tails!
« Reply #4 on: August 25, 2013, 08:55:29 am »
As people say no harm leaving them


In the 'old days' it was not unusual for lambs to be ringed up to 3 or 4 weeks old but it certainly caused them a lot of pain. The other technique was to just cut them off with an exceedingly sharp knife and that didn't seem to cause them as much grief. Although there was a lot of blood around when there were a lot to be done!


It was also quite common for the tails to be skinned, fried and eaten as a delicacy.


Despite not being legal I believe that cutting tails still happens in remoter areas.

SallyintNorth

  • Joined Feb 2011
  • Cornwall
  • Rarely short of an opinion but I mean well
    • Trelay Cohousing Community
Re: lamb tails!
« Reply #5 on: August 25, 2013, 09:26:08 am »
I think the vet would be able to do it with some local anaesthetic.  If you took them in it shouldn't cost too much? 

But as everyone has said, if you keep on top of dagging, worming and flystrike preventative, you shouldn't have too much trouble.  If the tails are quite woolly you will probably want to crutch - clip out the top part of the tail - before tupping.  Do this at least 10 days before the tup goes in.
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

SteveHants

  • Joined Aug 2011
Re: lamb tails!
« Reply #6 on: August 25, 2013, 10:49:06 am »
I don't tail and of the only wooled breed I have (lleyns) many were not tailed when I bought them. Hasn't caused me any problems either with strike or tupping issues at all.


As long as the backends remain clean then tails actually help prevent strike because they are able to 'swish' them at flies.


I have also heard some rumour that short tails help prevent mastitis, but I really can't believe that.

Marches Farmer

  • Joined Dec 2012
  • Herefordshire
Re: lamb tails!
« Reply #7 on: August 25, 2013, 12:11:52 pm »
What breed are they?  As has been said good care should do the job.  Badger Face Welsh Mountain are left long-tailed to protect their udders from cold winds on the mountains and the tails are clean of wool on the underside, which helps a lot.

roddycm

  • Joined Jul 2013
Re: lamb tails!
« Reply #8 on: August 25, 2013, 02:26:27 pm »
They are friesland sheep. I used to have welsh mountains and never docked them but when I went more commercial I found that they sell better with short tails so I just got into that habbit! I am keeping these grils though so it won't matter I guess!
Thanks all!

smudger

  • Joined Jan 2012
  • North Devon/ West Exmoor
Re: lamb tails!
« Reply #9 on: August 25, 2013, 04:02:05 pm »
Milking sheep? Will you?
Traditional and Rare breed livestock -  Golden Guernsey Goats, Blackmoor Flock Shetland and Lleyn Sheep, Pilgrim Geese and Norfolk Black Turkeys. Capallisky Irish Sport Horse Stud.

SteveHants

  • Joined Aug 2011
Re: lamb tails!
« Reply #10 on: August 25, 2013, 11:25:57 pm »
A lot of my woolshedders have Friesland in them somewhere....

roddycm

  • Joined Jul 2013
Re: lamb tails!
« Reply #11 on: August 26, 2013, 12:39:23 am »
Milking sheep? Will you?
Yes I think I will! I'm not a huge fan of cow milk and have been looking into getting goats so yes most probably!

 

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