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Provided there is no mother in sight and you want to hand raise the lamb
If the lamb is new born- it needs colostrum either by bottle or stomach tube if it can't suck
If the lamb is more than 24hrs old- you can start giving milk replacer straight away
Keep the lamb warm and dry it, if it is wet
Lambs require colostrum within the first 24 hours of life. It provides immunity, acts as a laxative and is a concentrated nutrient and energy source
Usually about 200ml of colostrum within the first day of life is needed but we would recommend feeding only 50ml at each feed
Lambs that don't receive colostrum usually have a high death rate or become weak lambs which are very susceptible to disease and hypothermia
Ideally ewe colostrum should be given so, if possible, catch a ewe and attempt to milk or suckle the lamb. Colostrum can also be frozen and thawed in a water bath when needed
If no colostrum is available this recipe can be used
700ml cow's milk
1 beaten egg yolk
5ml cod liver oil
15g dextrose powder
Lambs can't digest sucrose (table sugar) so this can't be used
Options are as follows::
Cow's milk plus full cream milk powder- 70g powdered milk made up to 1L with cow's milk gives a formula similar to ewe's milk
Full cream milk powder alone- make according to instructions
Ewe milk substitutes such as Profalac
Personally I would recommend a powdered milk option for rearing individual lambs as the cost is more easily managed. For rearing multiple lambs, ewe milk replacers are likely more beneficial. Cow's milk should not be fed on its own or 'watered' down.
Quantity and Frequency of Feeding
|Age||Amt per Feed (ml)||Feeds per Day||Total per Day|
|1 Days||Feed Colostrum||at least 200ml|
|2 - 7 Days||100 - 150||5||500 -700ml|
|1 - 2 Weeks||180 - 250||4||720ml - 1L|
|2 - 3 Weeks||360 - 500||3||1 - 1.5L|
|3 - 4 Weeks||500 - 700||3||1.5 -2L|
|4 - 5 Weeks||750 - 1000||2||1.5 -2L|
A rough guide to feeding is to administer about 10% of the lamb's body weight per day in milk.
The temperature of the milk does not matter (usually cold is best), but if the lamb is hypothermic then the milk should be warm.
Also provide ad lib water.
small and weak lambs need smaller volume, more frequent feeds (conversely, big buffy lambs will probably demand larger more frequent feeds!)
Usually 50ml/kg body weight is needed at every feed. 3-4 feeds a day depending on age.
Milk should be warmed but can be given cool
Lambs can started on concentrates from 4 weeks of age and weaned if necessary from 6-8 weeks.
Rearing lambs can be a great experience, especially for young children. They make the most beautiful pets. However, a word of warning....as we found out last winter, they are prone to just 'dying off' for no apparent reason. Unfortunately, some abandoned lambs just can't be saved.
If you have doubts about the health of your lambs please consult your local veterinarian for advice. Good Luck!!
|Lamb Reviver||1Lt Lamb Feeder||Lamb Bucket||Lamb Blanket pk 25||Automatic Drinkers|
|Tags: Animal Health General Farm Lamb Care Sheep Small Farm Management|