If you care for an elderly, injured or special needs pet, you've come to the right place!
Welcome to our board. One of our moderators, Lisa, lives in Canada and has a farm. If anyone has advice for you, she will. Hang in there.
Christine... and Bailey, playing at the Bridge
?/1999 - 10/25/08
I know NOTHING about lambs in specific, but I have/have had severe CHers of the more typical pussycat sort. While your baby isn't apt to "recover," CHers usually become more able to make use of what abilities they have as they get older. True CH also doesn't get worse, so they adapt. I'd wait and see what develops as she grows.
Can anybody recommend an appliance to support the lamb, she has working 4 legs but no balance due to her problem. She is now trying to move herself towards food etc so I think she has some brain function. she is stying in the house at the moment but would like her to have something to hold her up. She is very foppy on her side but if held up and supported kicks all of her legs.
I was going to mention that your lamb should have been up and walking almost right after birth. I know all about having babies in the house: just ask the bottle-fed goat baby who lost her mama and who spent a few weeks in the winter in our living room! In my experience, livestock vets know very little outside of the regular problems they will encounter so they would for sure tell you to put your lamb down. If you are willing to try and nurse your lamb, I see no reason why you cannot try to save her. I myself have special-needs livestock and have fought a vet to the teeth who threatened me because she decided my donkey was suffering when equine vets confirmed that she is not. I think that you are right about trying to fashion a sling of some sorts. Livestock are not meant to be down on the ground and though she would be on soft bedding, she could develop sores. Also exercising her legs will strengthen them even if the brain does not send the right signal down to the legs to move properly enough to walk. What about using a small child's wagon, sort of a small flat square with wheels that you can strap the lamb onto? You would have to make sure that this would be done on carpet or somewhere there is good traction. What about using a towel sling around the middle of the sheep so that you can support her when she is walking? Maybe someone else would have better ideas. I would treat her, right now at least, as a medium-size dog and use the same adaptive equipment as those with CH dogs. What breed is she? Hopefully she will be one of the smaller breeds when full-grown. Oh and also, please make sure that she is kept shorn as fly-strike and mites would be more of a concern for her if she were in the barn lying down on hay than a sheep out in pasture. Also, her hooves will need to be trimmed properly and on the right angle to enable her to maintain her "walking" ability. She would not be wearing her own hooves down on rocks. I am sure you know most of this but I am trying to write everything I can think of.
Let us know how she is doing.
She is a pedigree Shetland Sheep. we have her mother and twin brother in our field. Mu husband and I discussed having her PTS today but she seems to be trying to roll up today which is more than she could do yesterday. I have just put put a dish of lamb creep in front of her and she is tucking into it. She has a very shaky head but there must be some brain function for her to manage that. Thanks for your help, I think people judge me on my sentimentality and think she is a hopeless case.
Here is a picture of a simple 4-wheel mobility cart. You can make one at home as well.
http://web.archive.org/web/200902251851 ... vanse.com/ (opens slowly, sorry)
Here are a couple of other ideas.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xf2ped16bwA (4-leg support)
http://v.youku.com/v_show/id_XMTQ5MjAxMDYw.html (homemade 4-leg support, video quality improves toward end)
Good. I was worried that she would be a Karakal or some other large meat breed.
That is positive. I wonder how her rumen is functioning. I am questioning whether or not a neurological condition would affect the proper contractions. If she seems okay thus far and is not scouring, then that could be good news.
You're preaching to the choir LOL. No hopeless cases here. We always try. When it comes to chickens, I have splinted legs, bound busted wings, cared for puncture wounds, picked maggots one by one out of birds who come to me hurt. When it comes to livestock, I have tried to save a toxic mastitis goat against all odds, kept an orphaned kid in my living room, and have a severely disabled donkey in my pasture who looks awful but who is as happy as a clam.
I am so sorry to hear about your lamb. As someone who has dealt with brain damage in humans, I have to tell you that it really is not fixable. At least now your lamb has been spared any long-term suffering now. With summer approaching, it would have been hard to keep her cool, even with her fleece shaved. I applaud your efforts. Losing any creature is hard, especially one we put so much effort into.
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