Lick Tubs

by: Dr. G.F. Kennedy

I received a call recently, a producer was having good lambs that were still on the ewe just tip over and die. After questioning, we discovered he had recently added lick tubs to the lot and the lambs really liked them.

I suggested removing the lick tubs among other possibilities. He did and today he called back and said as soon as he removed the tubs the lambs quit dying.

Classic urea toxicity. There are two practices I thoroughly dislike in the sheep business, one is minerals containing phosphorus and the other is lick tubs.

Corn and soybean oil meal are always cheaper than molasses and urea and obviously safer. Lick tubs and tanks provide profit for the seller and a false sense of security and the easy way out for the producer. They are not the right choice.

About Ask-a-Vet Sheep

Veterinary services, procedures, biologicals, and drugs mentioned in this publication represent the personal opinions and clinical observations of the contributing author. They are in no way intended to be interpreted as recommendations without the consent of the producer’s own practicing Veterinarian. We strongly urge that producers establish a patient-client-veterinarian relationship that allows extra-label use when there are no drugs approved for treatment or if approved drugs are not effective. This procedure allows veterinarians to go beyond label directions when “prudent use” is necessary. The limited availability of drugs and biologics in this country is a major factor in restricting the growth of the sheep industry and allowing producers to compete in the world market place.
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