Wednesday, December 17, 2014

Our First Vet Visit

Today was a big day for the new sheep, their first vet visit. The last three weeks with the new sheep have been a very steep learning curve for me. First we had the leg problems with the littlest lamb (learned all about joint ill) then we had the ewe with runny stools (maybe scours, changes in diet from the move, stress, etc) and then three of the sheep didn't want to eat. All the sheep seem to have gotten their appetites back, are eating lots of hay, devouring their grain, and nibbling on their minerals. But now we have two sheep with very itchy backs/shoulders. I was able to examine one of the sheep and found a crusty, scabby area which is intensely itchy for the sheep.

That brings us to our vet visit. Finding a vet was a chore in itself, but today Abby from Dr Hoshall's practice in Oley came for a visit. She was excellent; so calm with the animals and very willing to discuss and explain.  She diagnosed probable mites and gave all the sheep Ivermectin and the one sheep with the worst case a shot of antibiotic.  Even the little lambs got some Ivermectin just in case. She also recommended an Ivermectin pour on treatment. Hopefully, we will see improvement and then we can finally let the sheep and goats meet each other 3-4 weeks after the sheep are better.

The other reason I had the vet come out was to trim the sheeps' hooves. The new mama ewe had very overgrown hooves and took the most trimming. The sheep with the worst dermatitis also got her hooves trimmed, although she wasn't quite as bad.  The other two sheep we left alone, except for their shots.  The vet thinks they are too close to lambing to stress out with hoof trimming and I was thankful for that. I don't need us inducing early labor.  She recommended trimming their hooves about 2-3 weeks after they deliver.  And she thinks they will lamb in about a week. Maybe we'll have Christmas lambs!

All in all I was very happy with this vet visit. I have never had a large animal vet come out to the house and was nervous about how it would go, but Abby was great!

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