which breed/prone to ticks?

Discussion in 'Sheep' started by Unregistered-1427815803, Jun 16, 2004.

  1. I do not have sheep yet, but am considering acquiring a pair. I have three quick questions:

    First, are sheep susceptible to ticks? We are currently battling them on our dogs. Have gotten some baby guinea hens to take care of the problem, I hope it helps. But I don't want to bring in any other tick susceptible animals just in case.

    Second, I am wondering if anyone knows which breed of sheep are best as pets. I read about some once, but can't remember what they are called. They said they are more sociable with humans. Otherwise, which sheep are the smallest and which sheep are the most hardy as far as easy to care for?

    Three, we live in the country on 5 acres, but I'm not sure my husband wants to fence it all in. Our backyard is fenced in (about 1 acre) with welded wire fence. How many sheep would that support, and would it get too poopy (since it is a yard)?
     
  2. Mouse

    Mouse Well-Known Member

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    We have found that the sulfur salt blocks (only salt and sulfur, no copper) work great against ticks. The people at the feed store told us it would, but we didn't believe it, but we're seeing it first hand. We have guineas too which also helps. Sorry, don't know what would be best for pets, other than wethers not rams.
     

  3. Ross

    Ross Moderator Staff Member Supporter

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    Sheep have blood so yes they are suseptable to ticks, I don't know how prone they are with wool but I suspect it's a poor defence. Coopers Delice however is like a nuclear weapon against external parasites. That sulfer block sounds interesting though! I like to push Dorsets as pets or a beginers flock for several reasons. They do come in small sizes, vets know Dorsets and are a bit better about comeing out when called, they're easy to get new genetics for replacements, they're usually cheap, reasonably quiet, good mums, useable wool, tastey meat, only a couple of vexations like hoof trimming and shearing. Almost any breed can be made into pets, even my satanic North County Cheviots have a few sweeties. My Rideau Arcotts are almost pesty freindly for the most part and they weren't bottle fed or from a small flock. In fact they were from one of Ontario's top breeders and a no-nonsence kind of guy.
     
  4. Ross

    Ross Moderator Staff Member Supporter

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    Sorry 1 acre will support 5-7 sheep in most parts but those numbers will max it and yes it will look like barren ground when they are done
     
  5. GeorgeK

    GeorgeK Well-Known Member

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    Everything (animals anyway) is susceptible to ticks. That said I've never seen a tick on any of my Soay Sheep, which are small (60-90 pounds) and if handled regularly could be a good pet. They also do not require shearing, you can pull out the few clumps of wool if it hasn't all shed on its own. (they really more scrape it off themselves on fence posts and trees rather than truely shed). I have seen a lot of ticks on the pigs, but now the chickens peck those off. if you are interested in Soay, take a look at my website www.windridgefarm.us it has a link to breeders near you
     
  6. Maura

    Maura Well-Known Member Supporter

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    Three will be happier than two. We have three Black Welsh Mountain which are extremely hardy, small, and good mothers. Their wool is so so, but doesn't get long so they only need to be shorn once a year, at which time the shearer can trim their hooves. They are not particularly affectionate, don't want to be petted. But, they are reasonably tame. They are not for you if you want them in your lap, but they will eat out of your hand and are gentle.

    You can keep three sheep on one acre, but you need to move them around. We use portable electric fencing to keep them in small areas and move them bit by bit. If you do this, they shouldn't have problems with internal parasites. If you leave them on the one acre, not managed, you will need to worm them, and they will only eat what they like and allow the other stuff to grow. Right now, ours are on our front lawn mowing it along with a couple of Corriedale crosses and two mini donkeys. Their poop is like a rabbits, small pellets, which is a lot less messy than larger sheep.

    Sheep need protection in the summer, some sort of shade either from trees, bushes, or a tarp. Heat is much harder on them than cold.