Bloated lamb - help!

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9 years 7 months ago #493010 by muri
Replied by muri on topic Bloated lamb - help!
I have never had bloat and dont know enough about it but wonder if by continually taking the lambs off the teat you are making them very anxious about getting their tucker?
Not heard of that method of feeding them, is there a particular reason for it?

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9 years 7 months ago #493013 by BlueSkyBee
Replied by BlueSkyBee on topic Bloated lamb - help!
Another question, someone has suggested to me that I mix the milk stronger, ie more milk powder than is suggested on the packet to the water, and give them less each feed. I am not going to do it, because it doesn't sound right, but can anyone tell me exactly why you shouldn't mix the feed stronger? Constipation? MORE lactose to feed the bacteria?

(Or is it actually a good idea, that I am ignoring?)


To dig in one’s own earth, with one’s own spade, does life hold anything better? –Beverly Nichols


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9 years 7 months ago #493017 by Stu_R
Replied by Stu_R on topic Bloated lamb - help!
i have always used Anlamb .. and have gone by what the bag says to for my lambs ( ok i am no pedantic and i dont weigh it, nor do i stick to the strict level scoop bit ,, they get the scoop as it comes out of the bag ) and apart from Midget ( and i know that was a wron teat problem and to fast a flow :( ) i have NEVER had bloat problems
Ryan the Vet also taught me with Midget where to stab with syringe needle to let gas out
LR and gang may be all on about excat and weigh .. me nah haven't time for that or the scales .. they just get what the bag says and not to fussy on level ... and never had problems ... Midget is one of 15 house bottle feeds here over time :)

5 retired Greyhounds ( Bridgette , Lilly, GoGo,Sam and now Lenny) 15 friendly sheep all of whom are named and come when you call them :) , 2 goats, Mollie and Eee Bee :
Olive trees , .. old bugger doing the best he can with no money or land :)

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9 years 7 months ago #493078 by Huntaway
Replied by Huntaway on topic Bloated lamb - help!
What kind of bottle do you use? I always use a glass bottle over a squeezable plastic one then kids don't squeeze it, even inadvertently, holding on to it. New teats might help too as they have to work harder to get it with them being stiffer.

I found a cider bottle that was perfect last year. Thought it best to replace it fairly regularly, just for the sake of good hygiene ;) ;)

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9 years 7 months ago #493084 by BlueSkyBee
Replied by BlueSkyBee on topic Bloated lamb - help!
Very good point about the bottles.


To dig in one’s own earth, with one’s own spade, does life hold anything better? –Beverly Nichols


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9 years 7 months ago #493085 by LongRidge
Replied by LongRidge on topic Bloated lamb - help!
My dad, who was a vet, tried the more powder to water method, on calves, on his experimental farm. It did not help and did cause problems, abomasal bloat being one of them.
Stu, I try very hard to do things the easy way, and before we had a lamb die from incorrect measurements I didn't worry too much about how correctly I got the powder to water ratio. Since using accurate ratios I've had much fewer problems, especially with very young, and very weak lambs. We don't bottlefeed unless the lamb is/seems unhealthy. Getting the milk right is so easy, and fixing a lamb with digestive problems so difficult, that makes getting the milk right so valuable to us.

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9 years 7 months ago #493133 by BlueSkyBee
Replied by BlueSkyBee on topic Bloated lamb - help!
Wee lamb that's sensitive to bloat is now going on a yogurt diet... Pretty sure that will fix her up.

I've been using the red and yellow teats, and got given a blue and red one, it is a MUCH slower teat, so I'm sure that will help as well.


To dig in one’s own earth, with one’s own spade, does life hold anything better? –Beverly Nichols


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9 years 7 months ago #493168 by LongRidge
Replied by LongRidge on topic Bloated lamb - help!
It may .... but it might not. Personally I cannot understand that Lactobacillus casei in the abomasum is either natural or useful. Various Lactobacillaciae are usual rumen flora, but not L casei, and you don't want milk in the rumen. Also, L casei will eat the milk sugar (lactose) that you want to nourish the lamb.
Thus, good luck.

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9 years 7 months ago #493202 by Flossie
Replied by Flossie on topic Bloated lamb - help!
Epsom salts in a syringe, not sure if anyone has already put that on here. Good luck.

~Flossie~

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9 years 7 months ago #493841 by BlueSkyBee
Replied by BlueSkyBee on topic Bloated lamb - help!
The yoghurt is really helping with the bloating issues thank goodness, I think possibly the amount of 'good' bacteria is now outweighing the nasties.

Interestingly, I have a friend who got another orphan from the same farm, so they are both South Suffolk, and hers is also bloating.

Out of the 8 lambs we are collectively rearing, the only ones to bloat are these two. Is it possible that this breed is somehow prone to bloat?


To dig in one’s own earth, with one’s own spade, does life hold anything better? –Beverly Nichols


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9 years 7 months ago #493934 by eelcat
Replied by eelcat on topic Bloated lamb - help!
Most of our hand reared babies have been Sth Suffolks and (touch wood) we've never had bloat. We do always follow the recipe in the AmLamb booklet and add a slosh of yoghurt.

1 Border collie, 1 Huntaway, 2 Lhasa Apsos, Suffolk and arapawa ewe crosses, an Arapawa ram,an East Friesian ewe , 5 cats, 42 ducks , 1 rooster and 30 hens, 5 geese, 12 goats, 2 donkeys, 2 house cows, one heifer calf, one bull calf, 3 rabbits and lots and lots and lots of fruit trees...

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9 years 6 months ago #495728 by BlueSkyBee
Replied by BlueSkyBee on topic Bloated lamb - help!
ok so this bloaty lamb of mine.

She is now 8 weeks old, and big and fat and happy, (same size as the other 2 orphans who are drinking normally) eating loads of grass. But. She still bloats at times, and then gets put onto electrolytes until she deflates.

Just weighed her, OMG she is 17kg! Bloody fatty! The other two who are 9 weeks old are over 20kg each lol

Sometimes she will take a feed of 200/225ml @ 8 hrly intervals twice no worries, then will bloat and need one or two electrolyte feeds.

My question is:

Should I keep this up until she is 12 weeks old, or wean her early (she has 2 flockmates who are being fed normally - 3 x 350ml/day)

I ran out of electrolytes last time, so this feed was simply 225 ml of water, which she drank quite happily. Can I save myself money by giving her water only (so she thinks she's not missing out completely) or do I need to stay with the electrolytes?

TIA :)


To dig in one’s own earth, with one’s own spade, does life hold anything better? –Beverly Nichols


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9 years 6 months ago #495736 by LongRidge
Replied by LongRidge on topic Bloated lamb - help!
Hmmmm, very interesting.
I wonder if she has a damaged "rumen by-pass valve" that is only working sometimes. If this valve is damaged then sometimes milk can leak into the rumen, rather than all going into the abomasum. Then .... the bugs in the rumen can have a party on the sugar, and if the bugs are Clostridium perfringens Type D they can make a poison .... :-(.
Did you try a slower teat?
I weaned too young one year and the lambs died, so now I feed until they are 12 weeks and heavier than 20 kg, whichever comes last.
If not done yet then I strongly suggest that you train them to eat lamb pellets. Allow at least 10 minutes after or before giving milk.

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9 years 6 months ago #495741 by BlueSkyBee
Replied by BlueSkyBee on topic Bloated lamb - help!
Yes, very slow teats now. She's fine, I guess I'll just continue with what I am doing. I am wary of starting them on pellets, as they are 'boomerang' lambs, and the farmers will not be feeding them pellets when they go back to them after weaning.


To dig in one’s own earth, with one’s own spade, does life hold anything better? –Beverly Nichols


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9 years 6 months ago #495743 by kindajojo
Replied by kindajojo on topic Bloated lamb - help!
If you have children feeding them, they don't let them suck on an empty bottle or feed with the bottle too low so they get air as well.....just a thought

At that weight I would be cutting down about now particularly with the bloat issue.

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