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This presentation was given at the 2007 Spring Forum of the Maryland Association of Agricultural Fairs and Shows, Inc. It discusses the issues and diseases.

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Presentation on theme: "This presentation was given at the 2007 Spring Forum of the Maryland Association of Agricultural Fairs and Shows, Inc. It discusses the issues and diseases."— Presentation transcript:

1 This presentation was given at the 2007 Spring Forum of the Maryland Association of Agricultural Fairs and Shows, Inc. It discusses the issues and diseases of primary importance at fairs and other expositions.

2 Assessing Sheep and Goat Health SUSAN SCHOENIAN Sheep and Goat Specialist Western Maryland Research & Education Center Maryland Cooperative Extension (301) x343 – Maryland Association of Agricultural Fairs and Shows Spring Forum - March 18, 2007

3 Fairs are stressful to livestock Handling and transportation stress. New surroundings. New pen mates (?) Contact with other animals. Close quarters. Strange people. Different water, food (?) Heat stress. Out of their normal routine.

4 Basic assessment of sheep/goat health Normal Hungry Alert Good body condition Bright eyes with good eyelid color Dry nose or slight clear (or white) discharge from nose. Head and ears up Tail up (goat) Healthy hair coat Clean hocks and hindquarters Formed stools Freedom from scabs, sores, abscesses, etc. Normal gait Abnormal Off-feed Lethargic Poor body condition Runny, red, or swollen eyes. Pale eyelids. Colored discharge from nose Head and/or ears handing down Droopy tail (goats) Rough hair coat Scabs, abscesses, sores. Soiled hindquarters Runny or liquid feces; blood or mucous in feces Abnormal gait

5 What is normal? ParameterSheepGoats Rectal Temperature avg. 102°F ( °F) °F Ruminations 2 per minute1-2 per minute Respiration 12 to 20 breaths per minute 15 to 30 breaths per minute Pulse 70 to 80 beats per minute 70 to 90 beats per minute Hematocrit (packed cell volume) 27 to 45% avg. 35% 22 to 28% avg. 28%

6 Assessing body condition an estimate of fat and muscle It is a subjective score. The exact score is not as important as the relative scores and differences between scores. Both the vertical bone protrusion (spinous process) and horizontal protrusion (transverse process) of the loin are felt and used to access body condition scoring.

7 Diseases of primary concern Contagious Skin diseases Soremouth External parasites Ringworm Foot rot Abscesses Pinkeye Pneumonia Non-contagious Stomach worms Coccidia Acidosis/feedlot bloat Diarrhea Foot scald Rectal prolapse Heat stroke/exhaustion

8 Skin diseases: soremouth contagious ecthyma, contagious pustular dermatitis, scabby mouth, orf Most common skin problem in sheep/goats Caused by a virus in the pox family. Highly contagious to other sheep/goats, as well as to people. Lesions most commonly seen on mouth and lips. blisters ulcers scabs Clears up in 1-4 weeks.

9 Skin diseases: external parasites Mites Lice Ticks (keds) Nose bots Blow flies Symptoms Rub, bite, scratch Intense irritation Excessive grooming Dull coat, hair/wool loss, bald patches, dry skin Snotty nose Redness of skin Nodules

10 Skin diseases: ringworm Club lamb fungus Caused by a fungus. Very contagious. Can be transmitted to humans. Transmitted by animal, equipment, or surroundings. Slick shearing makes lambs more susceptible. Causes skin lesions. Definitive diagnosis is made by culturing the fungus. Heals on its own in 8 to 16 weeks.


12 Foot rot and foot scald Foot rot is caused by the interaction of two anaerobic bacteria and is highly contagious. Foot scald involves only one bacteria and is not contagious. Primary symptom is lameness in one or more feet. They appear the same until you examine the feet. Foot rot infection is in hoof vs. foot scald which is between toes. Foot rot has a characteristic foul odor.

13 Abscesses Disease of concern: Caseous lymphadenitis (CL) Disease has internal and external form. Abscesses at lymph- gland sites. Caused by a bacteria. Very contagious. No human cases have been reported in U.S.

14 Pinkeye Infectious keratoconjunctivitis An inflammation of the inside of the eyelid. Usually bacterial in cause ( chlamydia, mycoplasma ). Different from pinkeye in cattle. Usually infectious and contagious to other sheep and goats. Symptoms: watery, red, swollen yes; formation of new blood vessels cloudiness in white part of eyes; tearing; and crusting (yellow or green pus). Mild cases heal in 10 to 14 days; severe cases may take 6 weeks to heal.

15 Respiratory symptoms Infectious Pneumonia Symptoms to look for Elevated body temperature Yellowish discharge Heavy, labored breathing Chest congestion Non-infectious Allergy Dust Poor ventilation Nasal bots Lung worms A clear, bilateral, watery nasal discharge is relatively common, especially in sheep, usually due to poor ventilation and/or temperature fluctuations.

16 Internal parasites (GI worms) are the primary health problem affecting sheep and goats. The barber pole worm ( Haemonchus contortus ) is the worm of primary concern. The barber pole worm is a blood-sucking parasite that causes blood and protein loss (anemia) and edema (bottle jaw). Worms have developed resistance to most of the anthelmintics (dewormers).

17 The FAMACHA© System for assessing anemia and barber pole worm infection in small ruminants Clinical Category ColorPCVDeworm? 1Red> 28No 2Red-Pink23-27No 3Pink18-22? 4Pink-White13-17Yes 5White< 12Yes sheep goats Selective deworming prolongs effectiveness of anthelmintics by reducing selection for drug resistant worms.

18 Diarrhea – Scours Increased frequency, fluidity, or volume of fecal excretion. Infectious Bacterial E. coli Salmonella Viral Protozoa Coccidia Cyrptosporidia Giardia Non-infectious Parasites Nutritional Management Stress Normal stool is hard round balls, but feeding can alter consistency.

19 Rectal prolapse (lambs) Multi-factorial problem Sex (female) High level of grain feeding Straining Genetics Short tail docks Can repair prolapse, but animal is usually salvaged.

20 Heat stroke/exhaustion High temperatures + high humidity Symptoms Rapid breathing. Panting. Collapse. Inability to stand Elevated rectal temperature, over 104°F; critical over 105°F. Prevention Transport and work during cool part of day. Clean, fresh drinking water. Fans. Treatment Cooling therapy Shade, ventilation Spray with water (cold water may be too much of a shock). Wet head, legs, and stomach Rubbing alcohol to the area between the hind legs. Do not soak a wooled sheep with cold water to attempt to cool them. Fluids, drugs

21 Questions? Comments Thank you.

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