Friday, March 5, 2010

Spring Health Check

Notice the strange looks on the llama and sheep's faces. That is the "it doesn't bode well for us" look. They get this look anytime we come into the pasture with backup. We have a small flock of 9 Icelandic sheep and 1 stately llama. It would be oh so much easier if we could just call a Vet to come out and give them their yearly CD&T and spring/fall de-wormer. It would be cost prohibitive for something that we are completely capable of doing. Thank goodness we don't have to wrangle many patients to give shots to. Then again we don't have to de-worm many patients either. I guess there is an up side when you search for it. I don't think these guys were seeing any up side here.

How do you catch a llama that doesn't want to be caught? With a lead rope and a bucket of grain silly. Ted is now our full time llama wrangler.

Look at those eyes. I can feel the angst. Can a llama have angst? It certainly looks like she does. We were able to de-worm and give her the CD&T without getting spit upon. I kept waiting. Images of green slime in my hair but she was a lady. No spitting. Llamas only spit when they feel threatened or in Fuzzy's case, when a sheep tries to steal her grain. Then look out. Ptooey.

Emily had a shocked desperate look in her eyes. We tried to make it as non threatening as possible. We are fortunate in Maine to have a light worm load. Because of the ground having a hard freeze in winter a lot of our parasites are killed. Unlike warmer climates where they fight worms all year and multiple types.

The de -wormer is a drench. We pull the appropriate amount up into a large syringe and as gently as possible squirt it into the left side of the sheep's mouth. One of my greatest fears is instilling the medication into the sheep's lungs.

Here Cierra tolerates the injection. We gave all of their injections into the subcutaneous tissue on their right sides. The medication is slowly absorbed into their systems and we have less problems with hitting tendons, blood vessels, or nerve tracts. On the right side allows us to check later that no abscess have formed at the site. This happens more with goats than sheep. Those buggers develop a large lump that may take a couple of weeks to a month to go down.

De-wormer for Cierra. She was a very good sheep.

We have developed a sea of mud. Usually mud season in Maine comes around April and May with the spring melt. The temps have been warm, 40's during the day. Mud everywhere. Here it is an actual season. Winter, Mud, Spring, Summer and Fall.

We can see future green grass and fields of hay. Those delusions keep us through mud season. Still on baby watch. I think most of us are. Keeping it real. Muddy but real. We have an exciting announcement to make. We have contracted with Sue Brown from Blackbird Studios to develop a web site for us. She is an excellent artist and is working on our logo. She is local and we try to keep local as much as possible. We have attempted to make a web site ourselves. That was an utter failure. Not my best effort. There are some things that should be left to the professionals. We will shout it from the roof tops when we go live. Right now it is in the infant stage. Take care and keep safe. Mainely Ewes Farm.


Terri said...

Kelly, I hate to say this but Cierra is the mouflon and Emily is the moorit grey! but hey, if you want to switch names, that's fine by me! Hee hee.

Fearless Nester said...

So glad your sweet critters took all their medicine sure captured their reactions so well in those images. I actually sighed when I saw it was all done! Looking forward to seeing your exciting new website. ~Lili

Debbie said...

I just stumbled across your blog today and was so delighted to do so. Sheep are one of my favorite animals, though I don't have any. I visited Maine last September for the first time (loved it)to visit my daughter who is living there temporarily while her husband who is a Marine is stationed out of Brunswick. She is a radiographer at her local hospital. Your life looks very interesting and I hope your animals do well after their medical checkups and treatments.
I'll be following you and keeping up with your farm life. Visit me if you have a chance!

ccrn1234 said...

I hope they do not aspirate either. LOL Can not imagine treating them for PNA!