Lambing season 2016 started with heartbreak. Last week I arrived at the field to see ewe 17 off on her own. I was immediately worried because she wasn’t due to lamb for another 16 days. As I walked over to her I could see her water sack hanging out. I watched for a while but there was no sign of anything happening. I called our friend Malcolm for a second opinion and help and we managed to catch the sheep and then get her penned in the shed. I left number 17 for a little while while I raced home, got changed, grabbed our kit and rang the vet. When I got back to her there was still no sign of anything.
The vet from Aireworth vets came and she was brilliant. She confirmed my suspicions that the ewe was aborting rather than actually lambing and it took 90 minutes to get the three lambs out of the ewe. The first two were dead, the third took a few breaths before slipping away. Number 17 licked it briefly and nuzzled it and we all stepped away to give it and her a chance but by the time I came back from taking the vet up to her car a few minutes later the lamb was dead.
Number 17 seemed OK. She had been given antibiotics and we kept her in th shed. The next day I checked her and she seemed OK but not quite right and I decided to keep her in another day until Kath was back from a work trip. That also meant I could give her another shot of antibiotics. The next day we walked her and our tame ewe Edith to the other field to keep her away from the other pregnant ewes just in case the cause of the triplets dying was something contagious. The vet said it was more likely to be a problem with the ewe given that she also lost triplets last year but better to be safe.
Number 17 was obviously a little sore but moved ok. She seemed OK on Saturday too but had perhaps got a little more stiff. On Sunday thought Kath found her barely alive at the bottom of the field. She got Bernard with his quad bike and little trailer and took her back onto the shed and got stronger antibiotics and an anti-inflammatory from the vet. Unfortunately number 17 didn’t improve. On Monday morning Kath took her to the vet to have her put down.
Rest in peace our gorgeous girl.