need help with sick ewe

Discussion in 'Sheep' started by sheeplady, Jan 11, 2005.

  1. sheeplady

    sheeplady Well-Known Member

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    I have a sick ewe that has me completely baffled. About two weeks ago, I noticed her off by herself in the barn, not showing any interest in eating. I put her separate. About 4 years old and was with a ram Nov.1 to Dec.1. Too early for pregnancy toxemia or calcium deficiency. Temperature was 104.4, no respiratory distress, gum color good, fecal droppings normal. Just acting depressed and not eating. I had vet here and did a blood test for OPP(was negative), did fecal tests ( negative) and she did a thorough exam. Lungs clear, some gas sounds. Otherwise inconclusive. I had her on penicillin for 5 days, temperature returned to normal , stopped that and it jumped to 105 in 2 days. So now we have her on Penicillin again plus Excenel. Also I am giving her KetoGold Gel 2x day and Probios paste 1x day. And hand feeding her alfalfa pellets, grain and syringing water into her several times a day. She gets up and down, walks around her little pen, but barely touches her hay and isn't eating the grain unless I hand feed her. Her water intake is basically what I syringe into her mouth. She is urinating very small amounts and the fecal droppings are getting less.

    Any other ideas? The only other diagnosis my vet had was some sort of internal abscess on one of her organs that is not responding to the antibiotics.
    Thanks for any help. Kate
     
  2. Ross

    Ross Moderator Staff Member Supporter

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    Why two types of antibiotics? Have you checked her mouth/ teeth for trouble there? About the only other thing I can think of is there might be a blockage like twine or some plastic in her bowel. An enema won't hurt but I'd think hard before trying a laxitive. Sheep do get cancer too.
     

  3. sheeplady

    sheeplady Well-Known Member

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    The vet reccomended using the two antibiotics together as one didn't seem to be bringing her fever ( unknown infecyion) under control. Today her temp was 102.6. So if there was a blockage, would that cause a fever? Initially she was passing lots of mormal size fecal material, but is not eating enough now to do that. How would I remove a blockage, as twine, etc.? I am very careful feeding hay here, almost obsessive on collecting the twine and trashing. Kate
     
  4. Ross

    Ross Moderator Staff Member Supporter

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    I was thinking about that after and you'd really think a blockage would lower body temp as she slowly ran out of energy. I'm a little surprised the vet didn't suggest an anti-inflamitory or steriod to reduce the fever. She is vaccinated? I wonder if she could have Lepto? (A WAG I'll do some looking up)
     
  5. Ross

    Ross Moderator Staff Member Supporter

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    Well Lepto would be reaching but they can have it and not show typical symptoms, oxytetracycline is suggested but excenel is a broad spectrum too. Ask the vet about Dex it has a metabolic boosting efffect too. My old standby of strong black coffee never seems to hurt and can get them eating etc.
     
  6. kabri

    kabri Almst livin the good life

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    Hi sheeplady, I hope your ewe recovers! Might I suggest you add electrolytes and a bit of molassis to the water you are giving her? I've never done the coffee, but makes sense it might also help her energy level. We had a ewe that we think bloated last year, 1 month prior to lambing. Had a fever, could not even stand for 3 days. We kept up the fluids, a little baking soda, and had her on SMZs because she was running a temp as well (pneumonia? We still don't know what it was) The amazing thing was, she actually survived. She aborted her twins after 3 days (both looked healthy, not deformed) and she recovered. Was proof to us the more TLC and fussing you are able to do, and the more fluids you can put down her, the better her chances. Good luck!
     
  7. sheeplady

    sheeplady Well-Known Member

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    After nearly three weeks of intensive care , my little Romney ewe passed on last night. :waa: As my vet was away and it is below zero here, I did not choose to get a post mortem exam done. It wasn't respiratory, wasn't OPP, and wasn't pregnancy related. It could have been cancer, an abscess on a vital organ, or a bowel obstruction.
    Anyway, I wondered how to bury her as the ground is frozen solid here. What do others do in winter? We opted to put her in a small fenced areaby the garden ( where dogs can't get into ) and covered her well with a 2 foot layer of old bedding and wood chips. I understand that studies were done at Cornell University at one time with winter composting of large animals and I think thats how I remembered it. I was told not to use lime as it slows down the natural composting. Sorry to have such a gruesome subject here :( , but I can't be the first one to have dealt with this. Thanks for any advice. Kate
     
  8. Ross

    Ross Moderator Staff Member Supporter

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    Sorry to hear that Kate, but I don't know what else you could have done. Composting is a viable method and what you've done is as close to the reading I've done as anything else. Pretty close to the time honoured encorporation into the manure pile, although the govt. folks didn't much like the comparison when it was made to them at a seminar I went to.