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#1 GroomerHasIt

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Posted 03 October 2010 - 09:21 PM

So we recently bought our first sheep to go along with our hobby farm and border collies, and needless to say we are VERY novice to sheep.
So we recently got married and went on our honeymoon, and came back to find one of our ewes with a very large under jaw and quite underweight. Now I know that this did not just happen in a week, and I feel horrible that we missed it until it got to this point. Her gums and pretty white already and she is in desperate need of some weight. The growth just looks painful, and is actually apparent in the top eyelid on one side of the face as well. After internet researching I have decided it must be Bottlejaw. Does anyone have any recommendations as to how to handle this?
We have given 5 cc of Vitamin B and a dose of pour on cydectin. They are in a smaller pen, should we move her once the wormer has had a chance to work?
Do I need to call the vet out?
Any advice would be greatly appreciated!

#2 Maralynn

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Posted 03 October 2010 - 10:14 PM

I really prefer using a drench, especially when you need those parasites to die now. Pour on cydectin can take longer to work as it needs to be absorbed through the skin.

My standard practice is to worm them a second time after about 3 days. I also give them sheep Nutri-Drench once a day at 1 oz/every 100#.

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#3 Bill Fosher

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Posted 04 October 2010 - 04:54 AM

If you poured on the Cydectin, you might as well have dumped it on the ground. Sheep do not absorb it through the skin the way cattle do. If anything, using a pour-on or injectible wormer with sheep will hasten the onset of resistance, because the parasites get a sub-lethal dose of the medicine. You should deworm all you sheep with an oral drench. The ewe that is showing signs of advanced anemia and weight loss will need to be fed a high-protein, high-energy diet in order to recover her flesh, but if I were you I would deal with this as a flock problem, not an individual problem.

You will probably need to deworm them again in a few days.

Even if you do everything right, you may lose this ewe. Bottle jaw is a symptom of very advanced anemia, and she may not be able to recover from it.

#4 kajarrel

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Posted 04 October 2010 - 06:58 AM

I want to reiterate what Bill wrote that bottle-jaw is an emergency situation - you should not delay treatment. But I also want to point out that it can be caused by causes other than parasites. For example, some toxic plants will cause anemia/bottle jaw as will very poor condition (due to lowering of the plasma protein). I would suggest getting a fecal so that you understand the specific cause of your problem better.

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#5 gcv-border

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Posted 04 October 2010 - 08:15 AM

Although not a specific treatment suggestion, I suggest learning how to use FAMACHA from your vet to evaluate the health of your sheep on a routine basis. It is a method that, if you perform it regularly, will let you detect early signs of anemia so you are alerted to impending parasite overload problems. (although anemia may also be a sign of other issues, I think most of the time anemia can be attributed to parasite problems).

Pour-on wormers -- FEH! Drenching is the way to go.

Jovi

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#6 D Strickland

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Posted 04 October 2010 - 10:06 AM

Her gums and pretty white already and she is in desperate need of some weight. The growth just looks painful, and is actually apparent in the top eyelid on one side of the face as well. After internet researching I have decided it must be Bottlejaw. Does anyone have any recommendations as to how to handle this?
We have given 5 cc of Vitamin B and a dose of pour on cydectin. They are in a smaller pen, should we move her once the wormer has had a chance to work?
Do I need to call the vet out?
Any advice would be greatly appreciated!


Hi .... I bought sheep from someone I didn't know this past summer. I confined them to a smaller area for a couple weeks to assess their health before incorporating them with my existing flock. One of the ewes came up with Bottlejaw. I hit her with Valbazen on Saturday then Cydectin in Wednesday..... by Friday there were no signs of Bottlejaw. I then took all the new sheep off that area ( which I quarantined for 90 days ) and moved them to another smaller area for another 2 weeks. During that time I ran the FAMACHA test and all the other sheep were fine. Funny how only 1 out of 10 sheep had such a worm load.

If this ewe has any further problems I will sell her.

FAMACHA is your friend. LOL
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#7 juliepoudrier

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Posted 04 October 2010 - 10:22 AM

I think Bill would rightfully point out that FAMACHA does have a place in your parasite prevention arsenal, but you need to remember that the anemia FAMACHA is used to check for is the result of infestation with the barberpole worm, and while that particular parasite is a major issue in parts of this country, just checking and treating for one parasite is ignoring numerous others that could also be causing problems in your flock. It's a very useful tool, but should certainly be combined with regular fecal checks to assess the full parasite load of your flock, rather than just checking for and treating the anemia caused by barberpole worms. And, as others have noted, anemia can also be caused by something other than barberpole worm. So don't become complacent thinking that using FAMACHA means you have a parasite-free flock.

Oh, and I just assume the OP meant they had drenched with the pour on. Before the cydectin sheep drench was available, many people were using the cattle pour on (the icky purple stuff) *as* a drench. But if the OP did use it as a pour on, I agree they may as well have poured it out on the ground.

J.

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#8 GroomerHasIt

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Posted 05 October 2010 - 07:10 AM

Thanks so much for the advice, I have read other places that she should be wormed for everyday for three days, is that too much?
We have also since got a paste and gave her a dose of that, also another shot of Vitamin B. Her face swelling has decreased exponentially since and she seems a little more aggressive with her feed, so I'm thinking thats a good sign!!
Now I'm wondering, should I move her soon to another pen so she doesn't re-infect? Should I keep her away from the other ewes? How do I go about killing the eggs/larvae in the ground? I have heard that they can live dormantly through a whole winter!
Also, this ewe was wormed the day we picked her up, about 2 months ago. Is this something she probably got since coming to our place, or is it possible that whatever the wormer was that they used, it wasn't effective? I'm just trying to figure out if she needs to be on a more frequent worming schedule or what... We got three ewes from the same place and this is the only one who has it.

#9 gcv-border

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Posted 05 October 2010 - 10:22 AM

Also, this ewe was wormed the day we picked her up, about 2 months ago. Is this something she probably got since coming to our place, or is it possible that whatever the wormer was that they used, it wasn't effective? I'm just trying to figure out if she needs to be on a more frequent worming schedule or what... We got three ewes from the same place and this is the only one who has it.


I don't feel that I can give specific answers to some of your questions, but with regard to the above question:

It depends!! -- The correct answer to most of livestock/agriculture questions. :^)
I would want to know what wormer they used. There is no wormer that kills/controls all parasites. Use the wormer that targets the problem parasite. Even if a broad spectrum wormer was used, if it was not dosed correctly, it will not be as effective. I have a wormer that I have to give only once, another wormer that I give for 5 days in a row and a third wormer that I give one day and give a second dose 10 days later.

Can you ask the seller what wormer he/she used? And how they dosed with it?

Jvoi

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#10 juliepoudrier

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Posted 05 October 2010 - 12:12 PM

Some individual sheep are more susceptible to parasites than others (that is, susceptible to doing poorly because of parasites). Your sheep may be one such individual. Your other sheep most certainly carry the same parasites but likely aren't affected as badly by them.

I know some folks who have such a parasite problem that they wrom every 30 days throughout the spring/summer months. So there's no way to know for sure if the initial worming wasn't effective or if your sheep picked up additional parasites once at your place. It would probably be worthwhile to take a fecal sample from that ewe to your vet and get a definitive answer on just what it is you're dealing with so that you can tailor your worming program from there based on what parasites are your biggest problem.

J.

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#11 Mike Neary

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Posted 05 October 2010 - 02:58 PM

Some thoughts:

*Pour on Cydectin should be given orally- it is not FDA approved though
*No need to treat again in 3 days unless your anthelmintic is ineffective. A trt 21 days later would be more effective.
*When looking for anemia, the best place in a sheep is the ocular membranes. It is the meaty tissue at the bottom of the eye ball.
*you can't distinquish Strongyle eggs from a fecal egg count, they have to be cultured and hatched. Usually not needed for most producers.
*the fact your sheep has bottle jaw indicates Haemonchus Contortus (barber pole).
*The life cycle from egg deposit, through larvae development to egg laying adult is about 21 days. So, because a sheep was dewormed before bringing on the place doesn't mean much after about 21 days, assuming the drug was effective.
*There is a lot of confusion on parasite control and it is imperative that producers know what they are doing.
* I would recommend 2 web sites, one is http://www.scsrpc.org/ for a very in depth look at parasite control and the other is a shorter publication we authored located at http://www.extension...AS/AS-573-W.pdf

Hope this helps- mn

#12 Mike Neary

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Posted 05 October 2010 - 03:07 PM

Forgot to add;

Bottle jaw occurs due to hypoprotein anemia, which is a confusing way of saying, low blood protein. In advanced stages it causes edema (which is what you are seeing with the bottlejaw). It occurs in the under jaw area primarily due to gravity as the animal lowers it's head to graze. Therefore, the most important thing to supplement is protein. Nutri-drench, vitamin injections don't hurt, but they don't get at the root of the problem, which is replenishing blood protein. Feed about a 1/4 lb daily of soybean meal or cottonseed meal (depending where you live) or some other high protein feedstuff until the animal is recovered. It may take several weeks. Higher energy is okay, if they are thin, but I've seen plenty of good condition sheep get bottlejaw.

mn

#13 Ancarrow

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Posted 05 October 2010 - 09:32 PM

Well, I just learned several things from Mike Neary, thank you. One being that bottle jaw is caused by the barber pole worm. I was never sure which worm(s) it was that caused that. For lack of knowing that, we usually would worm first with Cydectin (using the pour on as a drench) and then if that didn't seem to do the trick by say day 2, we would hit with a white wormer, usually Safeguard. That recipe seemed to work, but now I'm wondering if the Safeguard was ever really needed then. I alway figured (since the situation of bottle jaw IS serious) that it wouldn't hurt to do a full spectrum worming by essentially doing the shotgun approach and using several different wormers (I kind of think of them in terms of clear wormers covering similar worms and then white wormers covering yet different types of worms-that is not completely true, but a generalization that helps me remember what worms I'm looking to attack-wow, that was extra long winded-hope that makes sense to someone) Also learned from Mike about what exactly is needed for the anemia, thanks again. Knowing that is great knowledge. Again, for lack of better knowledge, we usually hit the sheep with molasses and/or maple syrup and also gave a bottle (yes, we even had luck training older sheep who had never been bottle lambs to take the bottle), of lamb milk replacer, mixed just like we were giving it to a lamb. You can also use a small opening type soda pop bottle and carefully pour a swallow at a time into the corner of the mouth, letting them swallow each time so as not to choke, until you have given at least 8 oz, 3 times a day, or whatever you can get them to take. I'm saying all of this because often the sheep were so weak you could not get them to eat on their own. Once we had a sheep with bottlejaw that would not eat anything, and really didn't want to take the formula, but would eat maple leaves by the handsful for days. Not sure how that may have actually helped, but I felt somehow it did. Sometimes I think my sheep live in spite of what we try to do, but after a while you just seem to get a gut feeling about what to try (if you were unable to find good info, or just didn't have time to research at the moment). The only time I have ever heard of the worming 3 days in a row, comes when using Safeguard liquid on a dog, usually the dose is approx. 1 ml per 5 lbs of body weight for 3 days in a row. For horses, I've been told you do it for 5 days in a row, sorry, can't remember that weight ratio off the top of my head right now. Never heard of any 3 day worming for sheep yet, but I certainly could be wrong there. Oh, and we have decided to address most (but not all) of our worming situations on a case by case basis, not necessarily doing all the sheep at once at "x" number of days intervals. We used to worm faithfully approx every 30 days (rotating wormers) during high peak months (usually that seemed like summerish times for us), but then the concern for building up resistance to the wormers concerned me and after we had some experience is spotting worming problems, we started going mostly to dealing with each case as it came up. Exception being if more than a handful came down with similar worming issues, then we would round everyone up and do a good "doping". I am also a firm believer that some sheep are just more prone to worm issues. Some seem genetically more prone (those go on the truck after several episodes and especially if their offspring have the same issues), certain breeds (again, possibly genetic) seem more prone and then sometimes they just are more prone/affected due to stress issues. (ie: shipping to a new area/farm, being chased by predators, drastic diet changes) Stress issues get their systems down and, it appears to us, to give the worm situation a foothold to cause more of a problem. Ok, that is enough of my bad grammar and writing run-ons. I am really enjoying this post. Good stuff.

#14 gcv-border

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Posted 07 October 2010 - 06:17 PM

This is a timely subject and I am learning a lot. Thanks.

I am fairly familiar with parasites in general, and I now feel the need to learn more about haemonchus contortus, AKA the barber-pole worm. In a timely post, I just received a pamphlet from another source which has a short article about barber-pole worm and so will outline here: (if your experience or knowledge varies, please let us know)

A bloodsucker that lives in the stomach. Just 1000 worms can drain up to 1/2 cup of blood per day, and a female can lay 5000 eggs per day.

Severe anemia can result. Evaluate with the FAMACHA technique. Often see young 'runts' when infected.

H. contortus is a strongyle, indistinguishable on fecal exam from 'regular old strongyles'. Any lab can culture it and see what worm hatches, but this is labor intensive and time-consuming. There is a special stain test - peanut lectin stain - (cost was not mentioned) which is currently being performed ONLY at Oregon State and Univ. of GA.

Safeguard/Panacur is virtually worthless. So far, milbemycin and levamisole still seem to have some efficacy, as may Valbazen (Albendazole).

I thought those were the highlights. Hope this helps.

Jovi

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#15 juliepoudrier

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Posted 07 October 2010 - 09:04 PM

Since Valbazen has now been mentioned, I want to remind everyone that it is known to cause *serious* birth defects when used in the first month or so of pregnancy. To be absolutely safe, I would not use it in any animal thought to be pregnant.

J.

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#16 stockdogranch

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Posted 07 October 2010 - 09:36 PM

About 10 years ago, we had lambs dropping like flies, like 10 a day. We took 2 (one recently deceased and one very close to it) to the local lab, and found out we had barberpole. We used Ivomec sheep drench, which *is* safe for pregnant ewes, and got rid of it.
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#17 Bill Fosher

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Posted 10 October 2010 - 06:40 AM

Ancarrow,

If you read Mike Neary's post carefully, you'll notice that you've learned something that he didn't actually write.

Bottle jaw is not caused by barberpole worm. It is caused by low blood protein anemia that causes edema, which settles in the lowest point of the body, which is often the pouch under the jaw. There are literally dozens to afflictions that can cause this, and it is entirely possible to have an infestation of barberpole worm that does not cause bottle jaw. It can even cause bad enough anemia to kill the sheep without causing bottle jaw.

And in a sheep that has bottle jaw caused by parasitism, seeing the bottle jaw go away doesn't mean that the parasite issue has been cured. More often it means that the edema has moved to a different location. Moreover, the fact that you still see the bottle jaw also doesn't mean that the sheep is still infested. It just means that it's still anemic.

This is tricky stuff, and it's important to understand it fully. You can't make a diagnosis or rule out barberpole worm (which I referred to by its scientific name, Haemonchus contortus) infestation based on the presence or absence of bottle jaw. In young sheep (lambs and yearlings) on pasture, Haemonchus infection is probably the most likely cause of anemia, but cobalt deficiency is another prime suspect. In adult sheep, if a Haemonchus infection has gotten to the point of causing bottle jaw in just two months, it's an indicator of an underlying problem: either poor health in the ewe or an ineffective drench two months earlier. "Ineffective drench" can mean anything from the miserable witch spat it out to the parasites have developed resistance to the drug that was used. And lots of stuff in between.

Fecal flotations and fecal egg counts (two different procedures) are still the best way to diagnose parasitism in sheep. FAMACHA checks for one symptom sometimes caused by one parasite and also caused by other problems. It is best used in flocks where there's demonstrated drug resistance to identify the least clinically affected sheep to retain as breeding stock, and to skip treatment on to allow both resistant and non-resistant parasites to remain in the gene pool on your farm.

So what does bottle jaw tell us? It tells us that the particular individual sheep that has it is in very serious trouble and may die. It also tells us that there is very likely a flock health issue that we need to identify and treat ASAP, while providing supportive care and improving nutrition particularly for the most seriously afflicted individuals.

Lacking other information and on-farm diagnostic capabilities, it's not a bad guess to start by assuming that barberpole worm is involved and treating accordingly. But you should also be in consultation with a veterinarian to determine what has gone wrong with your parasite management program that has allowed it to come to this -- if the problem is in fact barberpole worm.

Another thing that is a real hobby horse for me is the use of off-label wormers. Cydectin is available as a sheep drench. There is no need to use the cattle pour on as a drench or otherwise. Get the stuff that's formulated for drenching sheep. Horse paste wormers are also a bad idea unless you have instructions on how to provide the right amount of active ingredient and are sure that none of the "inert" ingredients are going to cause a problem with uptake of the drug by sheep. Remember that the pH of a sheep's gut is very different from that of a horse, a horse being a monogastric animal and a sheep being a ruminant. There are reasons why drugs are formulated for a particular species or group of them. And finally, Safeguard in any of its forms is not labeled for use in sheep. Remember this: the label is the law. If you feel you have to deviate from the label, do so only with the advice of a veterinarian.

#18 kajarrel

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Posted 11 October 2010 - 12:26 PM

To my knowledge, bottle jaw is not due to anemia; it is due to low plasma protein. This causes fluid to move from the veins into the tissues (where there is higher osmolarity) a condition known as edema.

Kim

#19 Ancarrow

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Posted 11 October 2010 - 02:33 PM

Fosher: All the dosages and "more specific sounding stuff" I did get from our local vet, now retired. Since his retirement,we still don't have a vet for our entire county. Closest large animal vet is approx. 40 minutes away (in WVA) and is now doing several counties, he's swamped. We really need a vet. Thanks for correcting me on everything else and providing even more good information on this subject. This has been so valuable. Thanks again.

#20 Bill Fosher

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Posted 12 October 2010 - 05:05 AM

Hi Kim,

You're right -- I was just trying to point out that barber pole worm in and of itself does not cause bottle jaw. So technically, the process is that the worms cause anemia, which causes low blood protein, which causes the plasma to separate, allowing fluids to move from the capillaries to the tissues, where they settle out as edema. In grazing animals, this fluid often collects under the chin, since that's the lowest point where there's some space for it to collect.

Animals with this form of anemia are very susceptible to pneumonia as well, as the fluids also tend to collect in the lungs creating areas of consolidation and putting the lungs under stress. This can create a very weak animal -- blood that does not have enough hemoglobin to oxygenate the muscles combined with lungs that have lost some capacity due to edema.

I'm currently in the midst of a barberpole outbreak in my lambs. About a third of the lambs are showing clinical signs of anemia, and have not seen a single case of bottle jaw. But I have one lamb that can hardly take four steps without resting to catch his breath, and when you pick him up he sloshes. He may very well not make it.

The timing is just about right. We have had a very dry summer, which tends to inhibit the hatching of worm eggs. At the end of September, we got a massive deluge that woke everything up. Two weeks later, we start to see clinical signs of parasitism.


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