Smallholders Insurance from Greenlands

Author Topic: twin lamb issue  (Read 2193 times)

Andy Pandy

  • Joined May 2013
twin lamb issue
« on: May 18, 2013, 08:52:55 am »
Two weeks ago (13 days to be exact) I noticed a ewe had twins, but favoured one, rejecting the other. I kept them in the mothering up pen for four days and kept a close eye on things. The rejected lamb managed to suckle -the ewe was good with it once it was latched on - she just did not seem to like it moving around her. She talked to the favoured one and butted this one away. It learnt to sleep at her rump while the favoured lamb cuddled up for affection. After the four days the rejected one seems bright and able to cope with the situation so I turned them out. All seemed to be going well until we had the atrocious weather last Wednesday. The next morning I noticed the ‘rejected’ lamb did not look so good. I brought the family back in and found the now smaller rejected lamb had a mucous discharge from its nose. I have topped up her milk with bottle (she is reluctant of course) and now she seems to be improving. BUT here is the problem - I noticed that the ‘rejected’ lamb has learnt to suckle the same quarter as the larger sibling where presumably it was protected from the head butting. Now both lambs share one side and the other seems unused. Needless to say the larger lamb is getting larger and the smaller one smaller. Does anyone have any ideas how i can get one of the lambs to swap sides? They will not be plugged in like a new-born as they resent my interference. Any ideas - or I may have to take it from her and bottle rear it. I already have triples that are being 'topped up' so could do it. Is it too late to start on a bottle? All suggestions gratefully received. Many thanks.


  • Joined Jan 2011
  • Dumfries & Galloway
Re: twin lamb issue
« Reply #1 on: May 18, 2013, 12:22:23 pm »
Take it off and bottle feed it, if she doesn't  like it its only going to get leaner as the large lamb takes all the milk


  • Joined Feb 2011
  • Cornwall
  • Rarely short of an opinion but I mean well
    • Trelay Cohousing Community
Re: twin lamb issue
« Reply #2 on: May 19, 2013, 11:39:23 am »
Since she's already had a bottle, albeit reluctantly, she will probably take to it well and do much better.  We have a few each year have to come in at a few weeks old as mum's milk fails, and they nearly always get onto the bottle eventually.  (Having said which, I am still taking 5 mins three times a day to trickle 200ml into the gob of one waif  ::) - he seems to like the milk but still hasn't quite switched on to how to suck it out of the bottle!)

The only way I could think to get an older lamb onto the other side is to tape up the favoured side - but I wouldn't recommend it.  I'd be frightened she's get mastitis on the taped-up side, for one thing.
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


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