|Wool Coats Not Always Enough For Sheep In Cold Weather|
“Make sure water is not frozen and accessible to the animals,” she advises. “The water may be frozen on the top and require breaking the ice; it is also possible pipes carrying water to the animals can be frozen in very cold temperatures.”
Caution, careful planning and superior care and handling are most critical, however, when sheep and goats give birth in the winter months. Providing shelter when the lambs and kids are born is essential. “It is possible to lose most of the babies born in cold, wet weather if there is no shelter for them,” warns Dr. Pennington. “Lambs and kids are smaller than calves and need more shelter in the cold, wet winter.” They can’t maintain their body temperatures in the outside elements. Heat lamps will considerably improve conditions inside the shelter also, notes Dr. Pennington.
Besides the temperatures, lamb and goat owners need to keep tabs on wind chill factors, too. “Wind chill will negatively affect the babies before it will the larger mothers who generate more heat from the bodies.”
Written by: Dennis McLaughlin, McLaughlin Writers Group, LLC
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