CDT Vaccines Seem Ineffective
Weve had a handful of bottle lambs over the seven years that weve had sheep. We take great care with them, but weve noticed that when we do lose them, it always seems to happen as a result of clostridium, after theyve received their first CDT shot, but before theyve received their second. Can you tell us why that would be? Thanks for any insights you can offer.
I would like to know at what age you vaccinate the lambs.
Young lambs are immune competent or able to build their own antibodies at around eight to nine days of age.
Before that the antibodies from the ewes first milk might interfere with the vaccine response.
My advice would be to vaccinate the bottle lamb at 10 days of age and then repeat every two weeks for a total of three vaccinations.
There is an anti-serum product you could give with the first vaccination that would give protection right away but could interfere with the toxoid C and D immunity.
The feeding of Aureomycin crumbles should prevent enterotoxemia too. I also would use the C and D without the Tetanus.
Hopefully the lambs first milk was from ewes vaccinated with the 8-way.
Johnes Disease In Sheep
My husband and I have a purebred herd of dairy cattle and are currently the only certified and accredited Johnes-free herd in North Carolina.
All of the vets here are telling me my sheepor any sheepare carriers of this disease. But when I ask sheep breeders about testing their animals for me to purchase, they dont have any clue about what I am talking about.
If the sheep are carriers, why dont we shepherds know more or hear more about this issue?
Susan W. Proctor
You are right, Johnes Disease does occur in sheep and also in deer and goats and, as you know, cattle.
In sheep it is similar to cattle.
Symptoms are: Unthriftiness, chronic diarrhea, and eventually death. With sheep the diarrhea is not watery like cattle, but soft and not formed.
The acid fast bacterium that causes this disease is transmitted from contaminated ground.
In sheep I think it is commonly overlooked with thin ewes going to slaughter and no one follows through to see why they are thin.
Fecal culture is diagnostic.
My last trip to New Zealand I was told that Johnes is fairly common in sheep there.
Nasal Discharge In Newly Brought-In Ewes
I have bought some Dorper sheep from West Texas this summer. They are very nice, good-looking sheep, but they keep having a nasal discharge.
I have put them with my other Dorper sheep and they are the only ones that have this problem.
What is the cause and what can I do to fix it?
It is always recommended to keep newly purchased animals separate until you are satisfied that there is no contagious disease present.
The runny nose could be due to dust or maybe head grubs.
However, with all of the new sheep showing symptoms, I think they have the parainfluenza type 3 virus that is so common in sheep.
This virus leads the way for the Pasteurella bacterium that results in pneumonia.
I dont want to alarm you, but you should separate the new sheep until the nasal discharge stops. Any sheep from that group that stops eating or grazing should have its temperature taken and be treated with antibiotics if the temperature is up.
Sheep Unable To Gain Balance
I have a small flock of 26 Border Leicester ewes. One has a peculiar problem: Sometimes she cant get up.
She gets all stretched out, on her side, and cant regain her balance. If I lift her head, on the level, she seems to have no trouble.
Apparently, if she lies down with her head up and level she doesnt have a problem.
She sometimes goes for several days, and then all of a sudden is down again.
I talked to the local vet who thought it might be some type of infection.
I tried LA200 but it hasnt helped.
Any help you can offer would be greatly appreciated. Shes been a good mother, presently about five years old.
Your description of your sick ewe would suggest an inner-ear problem.
It is not an infection and is not helped by antibiotics. It is caused by the dislodgment of tiny crystals that are normally present in the balance organ of the inner ear.
When these crystals become dislodged, dizziness occurs. The condition is usually self-limiting and gradually gets better with time.