Eye question-----HELP!

Discussion in 'Sheep' started by Snomama, Mar 14, 2005.

  1. Snomama

    Snomama Well-Known Member

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    We had a set of beautiful tripletts born this morning! One of them seems to have trouble nursing so we just gave up and brought him in the house and gave him a bottle.

    Now the eye question, in wiping off his face we first noticed some hair rubbing against his eyes, as I went to trim it off I realized he seems to only have like half an eyelid, on both eyes. His eyelid seems to go up in the middle. It is weird.

    What do I do? Nothing except trim the hair for now I know, but what causes this, will it always be a problem???
     
  2. Ronney

    Ronney Well-Known Member

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    Is this the bottom eyelid? It sounds as though it may be entropian or turned-in eyelid. If you pull very gently on the skin below the eye, does the lower lid pop out? If it does, it won't stay out. I deal with it by drying both the lower lid and the skin under the eye then smearing Vaseline on the lower lashes and the skin so that the lashes "glue" themselves to the skin. You will have to do this several times a day until the muscle firms up and the lid stays out on it's own.

    In some cases they will fix themselves, in others they don't and the constant rubbing of the lashes against the eye will eventually cause the eye to ulcerate and go blind. It is considered to be hereditary and rams that throw a large number of lambs in a season are often culled and lambs not kept through for future breeding stock.

    Hope this helps - and that it's what the problem is in the first place.

    Cheers,
    Ronnie
     

  3. SilverVista

    SilverVista Well-Known Member

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    I've never had turned eyelids (entropion) that could be held out by vaseline. My most successful non-surgical cure is to unfold the eyelid and pinch it so hard that it bruises and swells, holding it out. If that doesn't do it, sometimes you can use superglue to glue the outside skin just under the eyelashes to a fold of lower skin. The trick with superglue, though, is to get the skin dry enough to apply. Usually lambs with entropion will have wet, gooey wool under their eyes from the irritation. Really bad cases need something sterile like Ringer's injected to form a bubble in the eyelid or surgical clips applied, but that's not for the squeamish or for the inexperienced.

    This problem is sometimes hereditary, but I also see it in lambs that are born small and weak, like this triplet. The problem is lessened quite a bit when the lamb begins to get enough milk and enough activity to hydrate it so that its eyeballs protrude from the sockets more, like they should.

    If left untreated, the abrasion will cause cataracts and scarring of the cornea, and since it's painful, those lambs often don't grow as well as they should.

    Susan
     
  4. Snomama

    Snomama Well-Known Member

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    Oh dear, it's not the bottom lid at all, but the top one!

    It is shaped real funny, like a little hill in the middle instead of straight across in a line on the top lid. I trimmed the hairs so none of them are in the eye. I pulled on the lid and it just isn't there. I did not notice it until cleaning his little face, it is small, but significant enough that the eye doesn't close completely. I am guessing it will get irritated just from dust and stuff getting into it or not getting closed.

    I called our vet and he was out until tomorrow, called two different friends and my DAD and no one had seen this before. I guess it must just be some sort of birth defect? Only two of the boys have the problem, the other is fine. The worst one is in the house as momma wasn't allowing him to nurse. Ross, thought you might like to know, he is gonna have FOUR horns :) :haha: Want me to send him your way :D Right now he is really sweet :D He will just be a 4H project for dd and then MEAT! :rolleyes:
     
  5. Shahbazin

    Shahbazin Well-Known Member

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    There is some eyelid problem that is linked to multiple horned (polycerate) sheep. Maybe that's what you have?
     
  6. Ross

    Ross Moderator Staff Member Supporter

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    In all my years with hundreds of sheep I've never had a turned eyelid, or any birth defect like that so I'm not much help on that. As for horned sheep I've had my fill thanks, and the dozen or so I've had to deal with only had two horns, so perhaps it would have only taken 6 with four horns? I'm ugly enough to not need a sheep rearranging my face with their head gear!
     
  7. Snomama

    Snomama Well-Known Member

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    Hey Ross, I was just kidding, I remember how you feel about the horns :) So far we have only had one aggressive ram and I believe that is b/c he was bottlefed and totally spoiled! He slept in the house for weeks.

    ANYWAY< I lost the smallest of the tripletts, who had the worst eyelids, this morning. He was just too weak and nothing I did seemed to help him gain strength :( HATE losing a lamb, but at least it wasn't a ewe! The other two lambs are doing GREAT! they keep trying to get momma to play and jump around too!

    Thanks guys!

    Melissa