Joint illness temp

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Joint illness temp

Postby JohnScott » Sat May 05, 2012 8:56 am

Hello all,
We have a sick lamb where we think joint illness is what is going on. My question is, will the lamb's temp be elevated with joint illness? The lambs temp has remained steady at 101.1.

What we have observed is 6 days ago a then 3 week old tripplet lamb appeared to hurt and lame, but there was no obvious signs of injury. The lamb continued to deterioate and became progressive weaker. We put the mom and the other 2 trips in a jug to keep them together. The lamb eventually could not stand without help, and eventually not at all. The lamb had been robust and healthy prior to this, and during the last 6 days has lost muscle mass as well. We have continued to bottle feed it to keep it alive. We have been giving penicillin because we think it is joint illness - but if it is bacterial wouldn't the temp be elevated? The skin of the lamb feels like it has lost elasticity when trying to tent the skin to give sub-Q shots. The lamb is stil alive, very stif and skinny. When feeding it, it's jaw is stiff and locked almost, but once the bottle gets in the mouth it drinks a lot.

Any other idea what might be wrong? Any other treatment that may help it at this point? I feel like we have been expecting it to be dead for the last couple days.
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Re: Joint illness temp

Postby Judy Lewman » Sat May 05, 2012 9:44 am

White muscle disease? Just a guess. I'm not a vet, but if the lamb were mine I'd try a dose of BoSe ASAP . . . and consult with the vet as to follow-up med's. As a triplet, perhaps he came up short on colostrum.
Good luck!
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Re: Joint illness temp

Postby Saffronsheepranch » Sat May 05, 2012 9:50 am

tetanus?
Did the lamb get a shot for that?
Does white muscle cause stiffness or uselessness? I have never had it but I thought it was the latter.

Nuflor helped me with a joint ill case that went on over a month with a lamb when the penn. was not working.
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Re: Joint illness temp

Postby Janet McNally » Sun May 06, 2012 10:25 pm

This lamb is hypothermic and starving. Normal temperature is 102.8 to 103.5. A lamb at 101 cannot digest its food, the digestive tract slows down, thus it is not absorbing the fluids it needs, hence your observation that the lamb appears dehydrated.

The ideal solution would be to use a hot box to warm the lamb up. But lacking that, even bringing the lamb in, and putting the lamb in a box with a hot water bottle or heating pad would help.

It could be there are also other problems going on, but you have to address that body temperature first.

Janet
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Re: Joint illness temp

Postby jpa » Mon May 07, 2012 5:37 am

I found a "new" way to warm up a lamb this weekend. I was checking the sheep that are pasture lambing "quick a minute" Saturday morning right before we were supposed to meet a hay buyer at another barn we are renting. Of course it happend that one of the new lambs was cold and weak. So I quickly milked about an ounce from the ewe, tubed the lamb and put it in a bucket to take with me. On the way back to the farm the hay buyer called me to say he was there so I ended up putting the lamb on a feed bag on the floor of my Saturn station wagon. Turned the heat on floor/high and recirculated the air, got the kiddos in the car and took care of the hay while the car was running. It was crazy hot in the car when we got done and the lamb was up to temp as well. I milked a couple more ounces and tubed the lamb again and he is doing well off of mother's milk. Worked pretty good.

Jason
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Re: Joint illness temp

Postby Janet McNally » Mon May 07, 2012 9:33 am

Jason, that is a good tip. As my main bunch are lambing 7 miles from home, lets just say many a lamb has been warmed up on my floor boards on the way home :!: It just never occurred to me to put them in a bag..... the meconium slime is always a job to clean up.....

another lamb warming tip for mildly hypothermic lambs is to use an old cooler. Put a hot water bottle and some towels in there. But make sure to crack the lid open so that the lamb gets enough air. Lambs can be left out in the field with their mother this way.

Janet
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Re: Joint illness temp

Postby Island Shepherd » Mon May 07, 2012 11:20 am

We usually use a warming box. Someone on here maybe Richard Ehrhardt? mentioned a warm water bath. We had one earlier that was very close to needing in interpereneal glucose shot before warming it was so cold. I couldn't seem to lay my hands on a thermometer at the moment. It could just barely hold his head, his mouth was cold, but we had the usual mayhem going on so I took a chance and filled the kitchen sink full of quite warm (but not hot) water. We put the little bloke in, in such a way so that he wouldn't drown, and by the jumpins after a while he started coming around. That and a couple of stomach tubes with Mother's secret recipe brought that little guffer right back champion! He was the next thing to dead too so there you go you're never to old to learn. It took some doing to get him dry but toweling helps to stimulate them too so, anyway thanks to who ever it was that mentioned the warm water bath it if it wasn't Richard!
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Re: Joint illness temp

Postby Judy Lewman » Mon May 07, 2012 10:19 pm

Janet McNally wrote: Normal temperature is 102.8 to 103.5. A lamb at 101 cannot digest its food, the digestive tract slows down, thus it is not absorbing the fluids it needs

Thanks for the wake-up call, Janet. I’ve always considered 101-103 as normal temp so wouldn’t have guessed hypothermia in this month-old lamb. But reading your post, I realized that I’d never even taken the temp of a chilled lamb . . . frosty ears and frozen tails earned an immediate swim in the (designated) canning kettle.

John, please let us know how this one turns out. Hopefully the little guy is now warm and on the mend, and didn’t receive an extra needle stick on my account. In the days prior to selenium enhanced mineral mix we saw a lot of white muscle disease in Minnesota unless BoSe was routinely administered to all lambs.
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Re: Joint illness temp

Postby Island Shepherd » Tue May 08, 2012 5:36 am

Judy Lewman wrote:I realized that I’d never even taken the temp of a chilled lamb . . . frosty ears and frozen tails earned an immediate swim in the (designated) canning kettle.


*You should always take temp first if there is much doubt because if you warm them first w/o a glucose shot when they are too cold they will have a fit and die.

I know I didn't in the example above, :oops: but it was an educated guess, and a hail Mary with everything else that was going on when I couldn't find the thermometer.

*Edited to say: I'm sure you know that Judy, but lest someone be lead astray by my bad example... :?
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Re: Joint illness temp

Postby Judy Lewman » Tue May 08, 2012 11:41 pm

Island Shepherd wrote:You should always take temp first if there is much doubt because if you warm them first w/o a glucose shot when they are too cold they will have a fit and die. . . I'm sure you know that Judy, but lest someone be lead astray by my bad example

Dave, while your gentle regard for my psyche is sincerely appreciated, another confession is due :oops: In addition to not taking temp’s, I’ve never administered glucose to a chilled lamb. Long before I stumbled onto the the SID book, and mention of glucose, we’d learned to revive near-dead frosty lambs per water bath instructions from our first sheep mentor, a vet with 300 ewes (lucky find via the yellow pages). We were cautioned to begin with lukewarm water (even coolish, depending on how “frozen” the lamb), so as not to induce shock, and slowly increase the water temp while massaging the lamb’s limbs. Worked for us, every time, though I now understand why it’s not the preferred procedure.

That said, I should explain that our collective experience with “livestock” was nearly zip prior to purchase of 30 close-up bred ewes from a guy we later heard referred to as “Trader Fred.” The learning curve was steep . . . and erratic . . . and continues to this day. I could write a book about bad examples. Truthfully, the longer I keep sheep the more I realize that I don’t know about them. Thanks again for your kindness.
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Re: Joint illness temp

Postby Island Shepherd » Wed May 09, 2012 9:21 am

Judy Lewman wrote:That said, I should explain that our collective experience with “livestock” was nearly zip prior to purchase of 30 close-up bred ewes from a guy we later heard referred to as “Trader Fred.” The learning curve was steep . . . and erratic . . . and continues to this day. I could write a book about bad examples. Truthfully, the longer I keep sheep the more I realize that I don’t know about them. Thanks again for your kindness.


Oh boy, Judy every I'll bet county has a "Trader Fred". We all learn from the bad stuff, and hopefully never stop. Right now here we went from warm and sunny with new lambs frolicking about, to cold, raw, rain. It looks like a MASH unit here but we are coping somehow with the next generation of shepherds taking up the slack for the wearing out older generation. :)

Good luck,

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