Grafting Lambs

Discussion in 'Sheep' started by rivervalleyfarm, Mar 20, 2005.

  1. rivervalleyfarm

    rivervalleyfarm New Member

    Mar 20, 2005
    Yearling ewe had a late term abortion - about three weeks out. Good size bag - decided to take some colostrum, freeze it and try to graft a new set of babies from a mom with no milk. I was able to get them from a friend. Yearling's original set of twins were rams, this set is a ram and a ewe. The ram got right in there, but the ewe lamb doesn't want to have anything to do with her new mom and vice versa. Also the yearling basically allows the ram to nurse while I am there holding her so she can't see, without stomping him, but not the ewe lamb. With the ewe lamb she gets all jumpy and excited. Stamps her feet, growls, the whole deal.

    I'm not letting the ewe lamb starve - I have given her a bottle and also an enema to get her going since she looked constipated. 'That worked - she LOVED the bottle....and pooped nicely

    The lambs did get some colostrum from their mom when born, but she dried up - even oxytocin couldn't produce anything.

    Any advice?
  2. Ross

    Ross Moderator Staff Member Supporter

    May 9, 2002
    My grafting technique is as follows, "Hey ewe take this lamb" It even works occasionally. If I'm going to insist I'll leash the ewe (dog collars work well) and even tie a rear foot so she can't dance around too much. You can try to fool the ewe with various over powering smells, like Vicks. Check the lambs teeth to see they aren't too sharp, if they are file them down with an emery board. Bottle fed lambs are harder to get to nurse than tube fed ones.

  3. Cat

    Cat Well-Known Member

    Jun 19, 2004
    I've seen ewes placed in a headgate in a lambing jug for several (3?) days allowing the lambs free access to the udder. The ewe can dance a bit but she can't get her head back 'round there to nudge them away. This seems to work relatively well. As far as the ewe lamb not wanting to nurse if it were me I'd feed her enough to keep her alive but keep her hungry too so that the bag holds more appeal than it does if she is full.