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Author Topic: New Orphan Lambs-4 days old!  (Read 2709 times)


  • Joined Mar 2010
New Orphan Lambs-4 days old!
« on: March 31, 2010, 11:37:40 am »
I Have just got my first four orphan lambs, two of them are suckling very well on the bottles and are taking up to half a bottle four times a day. They also have a self feeder for the evening, that i fill will a small amount of milk to just keep them going through the night.
 Two of the lambs are much smaller than the other two, one came from a ewe that had quads so this is understandable,she is suckling well but only takes a small amount of milk, she also seems very quiet and doesn't hop around like the other two, she has no sign of scours. Do you think she will pick up?I'm just a bit worried as she is completely quiet compared to the other two. The fourth lamb seems to not want to accept the bottle very much, she will suckle around 100ml then she will not take anymore. I was just wondering if anyone had any ideas on how to get her to feed better as she looks a bit empty at times, i do not want to tube her if i don't have to but i would if this was needed.
 Also where the larger two are very lively and strong should i let them out into the whole of my small barn (they are penned at the moment and i let them out while i feed the others but this is only for about 15 Min's.) as i think they would like to be out jumping around having a bit more space. 
These are my first ophans of my own so im just worried about them as i want them to have the best chance in life.

Thank you  :)


  • Joined Jun 2008
Re: New Orphan Lambs-4 days old!
« Reply #1 on: March 31, 2010, 01:52:11 pm »
Hi!  I have a tiny, tiny little lamb, one of twins born yesterday and the mother has taken her twin who is much bigger and stronger and rejected this one so I am having to feed her as a pet lamb.  The smaller they are the less they'll take.  I've had this concern myself on a number of occasions with orphans.  What I find is that the little ones have difficulty taking the bottle - it has to be almost forced in and then they suck for a few seconds and stop, having taken very little.  However, like babies, they prefer, and are better off with little and often rather than 4 hourly.  This one I have has kept me awake all night (literally).  She bleets incessently around every hour and a half for food - takes a little and then bleets again for company (groan!).  How old are your smaller orphans?  - If they are under a week, sounds like they are normal.  Also, the smaller lambs, especially those from multiple births, don't always progress as fast as singles or good sized twins.  In a couple of weeks you'll see a big change.  Its just that getting to that stage is a lot of hassle and worry.  If your bigger ones want to go and run around and there its quite safe for them, then let them to have a run.  Cheers and good luck. 


  • Joined Feb 2010
Re: New Orphan Lambs-4 days old!
« Reply #2 on: March 31, 2010, 03:09:40 pm »
With orphan lambs the key is little and often for the first week. For 1-3 day olds 50/100mls is enough for a feed, based on about 6 feeds per day. It is very tempting to over feed when they are stronger. 250mls should be the very maximum any lamb takes at a feed. I mark all the bottles at 250ml as not to over feed.
For the smaller lambs get the smaller teats (red ones) that go onto a pop bottle they find it easier until they get the hang of it.
Try not to tube unless you have too, as it really makes the throat sore and then they are less likely to suck when you offer the bottle.

If they look slightly deformed after a difficult lambing I give them arnica for the first 72hours to reduce swelling and bruising internally.

Colate is excellent for an extra boost sounds like the quad will need some.

Good luck sounds like you are going to have some fun! 


  • Joined Dec 2009
  • Wiltshire
Re: New Orphan Lambs-4 days old!
« Reply #3 on: April 12, 2010, 11:16:04 pm »

I have a poorly lamb who has now taken approx 50mls from a bottle over past 3 hours.  Will he last until morning with this small quantity?  Spent a lot on him and don't want to blow it by not keeping up the feeding.


  • Joined Aug 2012
  • Clackmannanshire
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Re: New Orphan Lambs-4 days old!
« Reply #4 on: April 13, 2010, 12:26:26 am »
If that was a puppy I'd be up all night feeding him ad lib.  Try it - you can only do your best.  Good luck
Always have been, always will be, a WYSIWYG - black is black, white is white - no grey in my life! But I'm mellowing in my old age


  • Joined Feb 2010
Re: New Orphan Lambs-4 days old!
« Reply #5 on: April 13, 2010, 09:10:33 am »
If it were mine, I would be up feeding every couple of hours. I would also give a shot of lamb boost twice a day, for the energy and minerals. If you watch lambs with their mums they drink very little at each feeding time, but they feed more often. So a weak lamb under 4 - 5 days old will be fine on 50mls every 3 - 4 hours. I had a call from a friend 2 days ago about a lamb that was 3 weeks old and had to take off mum as it was not feeding and pretty much dead. After trying with a little milk, I used a glucose solution which it drank 20mls. I left him for an hour with hot water bottle, could not hold his head up and was doing the thrashing around (the kind just before they die). So as a last resort, i used lucozade and stayed with him until he drank 1/2 bottle. He is now bounding around friends kitchen and back on milk!


  • Joined Dec 2009
  • Wiltshire
Re: New Orphan Lambs-4 days old!
« Reply #6 on: April 16, 2010, 10:00:47 pm »
Well he survived at least so far but seems to have a problem - either deaf or blind judging by his actions.  He is very quiet and doesn't call for his mum but does wander around trying to find her.  Very strange but he feeds well even when mum is lying down he gets on his knees and suckles.  He is also very sleepy compared to other lambs.


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