Doc Kennedy’s Tips and Short Cuts

by: Dr. G.F. Kennedy

1. Pneumonia-Treat with Nuflor and Draxxin simultaneously. You generally only have to treat them once.

2. Salmonella– Treat with Excede or Excenel injected or Neomycin orally.

3. Enterotoxemia and Tetanus– Use one cc CDT and one cc Penicillin Aqueous at processing, birth to four days. Use CD at weaning and repeat in two to three weeks. Why vaccinate ewes? Not necessary and not all that effective.

4. Worried about scrapie?– Use RR Rams. QR Rams are okay if there are no plans to retain ewe lambs.

5. Pink EyeLA 200 or a generic substitute. Inject subcutaneously, individual eye treatment is generally unrewarding. However, it is okay in very valuable animals.

6. Lice and Keds– Use an approved permetherin pour-on. Ivomec is not all that effective.

7. Iodine– Always use iodized salt. Sometimes that is not enough. Add one pound organic iodine to 50# pounds of iodized salt. Safety factor is 100 to one. Our selenium/iodine premix will take care of all mineral needs.

8. Coccidiosis– Feed ewes Rumensin or Deccox six weeks prior to lambing and during lactation. This helps prevent toxoplasmosis abortion as well. Triple the Deccox levels in the first creep feed to get adequate consumption. Treat clinical animals with SQX or Sulfadimethoxine.

9. White Muscle Disease– Vitamin E may be provided in salt, feed or injection. In most areas it is probably more important than selenium. BOSE doesn’t contain therapeutic levels of Vitamin E.

10. Selenium– The easiest way to provide selenium is in salt. It may be provided in feed as well.

11. Mineral– Don’t feed it. Thirty pounds of limestone portion in growing and fattening rations is essential. Added phosphorus is not needed.

12. Water belly– Don’t add phosphorus to a ration. Be sure rations contain 30 pounds of limestone, 20 pounds of salt and five pounds of ammonium chloride.

13. Heel Mites– Worm the entire flock with Dectomax when trimming feet.

14. Abortion– Vaccinate for Vibrio, enzootic abortion optional, I would rather feed 250mg Aureomycin daily or pulse at a high level every two weeks. It depends on the origin and purchase of ewes. AS 700 may be a good choice because it delivers some Sulfa as well. Feed Rumensin or Deccox for toxoplasmosis abortion control.

15. Salt– Salt should always be iodized. Also, it should be loose, no blocks. This is an excellent way to add selenium, vitamin E, Iodine, and Deccox to ration as needed. Deccox 6% is added at the rate of two pounds per 50 pounds of salt.

16. Wormers– There are four wormers, Dectomax, Cydectin, Ivomectin, and Prohibit Levamisole. They are all effective when used properly. It is important to dry lot or change pastures after worming. Have a plan and do it strategically. Levamisole is the least likey to allow resistance but doesn’t get immature developing worms.

17. Tape Worms– Most people consider them non-pathogenic, eventually the animal develops immunity and they are expelled. These are worms you see. Valbazen is effective but less effective against stomach worms.

18. Footrot– Trimming, formaldehyde foot baths are the most effective. You will need to switch lots or pastures every time and continue to repeat the process. Chronic animals should be culled. Organisms will not survive for over two weeks in a lot. The only way you may get it is to buy it. New sheep and show sheep should be run through a formaldehyde foot bath and held in quarantine for 30 days. Always trim feet. The walk through formaldehyde bath is 19 parts water to one part formaldehyde. See foot rot article for more detail.

19.Castrating and Docking– Bands are procedure of choice. CDT and Penicillin provide Tetanus protection. Antitoxin is out.

20. Vaginal Prolapse- I have given up on ewe spoons and harness. I prefer 3/8 inch umbilical tape as a box stitch. Be sure you get anterior to the vertical muscle at the opening of the vagina. I use a purse string on the rectum if necessary. Don’t retain for breeding or offspring. For further instruction please refer to my YouTube video called prolapse repair which can be found at

21. Johnes- This is difficult to diagnose clinically, economic significance is low. Early culling of the animal and offspring are desirable.

22. Mastitis– Treatment is Nuflor at six cc per 100 pounds of body weight subcutaneously daily, Penicillin ten cc per 100 pounds of body weight, dexamethasone once and banamine. The goal is to save the ewes life. If half of the udder is infected, that half won’t recover. The treatment is also to prevent gangrene.

23. Retained Placenta- Don’t attempt to manually remove. Treat the ewe with 1 cc of Penicillin per ten pounds of body weight subcutaneously. Eventually the placenta will drop.

24. Obstetrical Work– Always use plenty of lubricant. Take it easy, don’t panic and don’t force the impossible. Always recheck  for the last lamb. Place an oxytetricycline bolus in her uterus when you are finished.

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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