Sheep and minerals -

Discussion in 'Other Pets' started by kelebek, Feb 2, 2009.

  1. kelebek

    kelebek New Member

    Oct 5, 2007
    South Texas
    I have 4 Blackbelly ewes in with my does right now because of the heavy snows that we have had.

    Tonight I went to fill the goats minerals (Purina Goat Minerals) and 3 of the 4 sheep came flying in a scarfing the minerals - even pushing goats out of the way for them. Mind you I was standing 5 feet from the feeder and these sheep are NOT anywhere near tame.

    Obviously they are needing something in the minerals - and I didn't put out only "sheep" minerals because of my pregnant does -

    SHould I be concerned? Could this cause "serious damage" especially if they are pregnant? They have been with the does for almost 2 months and are fixin to be turned loose probobly this weekend back into their own area.

    What do you think??
  2. StaceyRosado

    StaceyRosado Administrator Staff Member Supporting Member

    Oct 4, 2007
    Ok well I think all you need to watch for is signs of toxidity. I do believe the onset would be pretty soon after consumption.

  3. Crissa

    Crissa New Member

    Oct 7, 2007
    Cashion, Oklahoma
    Don't let them have ANY more! Watch for signs that they are sick, but even if they don't make sure they don't get anymore. If that copper builds up it WILL kill them.

    It does sound like they are needing something that's in them though. What do you feed them?
  4. liz

    liz Well-Known Member

    Oct 5, 2007
    Shelocta PA
    Allison....I hope thy are doing all right. The copper in the goat minerals can be toxic to sheep, if anythingwas to "happen" to them it will happen soon....hope all is well.
  5. Shelly

    Shelly New Member

    Oct 5, 2007
    Try putting sheep minerals in a pan and hold the goat minerals to feed. If the sheep aren't tame they should prefer eating out of the pan away from you. My sheep always attack the minerals like it's been years instead of a day or two without. I fill the mineral feed once a week. Shelly

    Here's some information on copper toxicity in sheep.
    Copper toxicity in sheep usually results from the accumulation of excess Cu in the liver over a period of a few weeks to more than a year with no clinical signs, followed by a sudden release of liver Cu stores to cause toxicity (rapid breakdown of red blood cells). In these situations, chronic Cu poisoning may result from excessive Cu intakes or from low intakes of Mo, S, zinc, calcium or following liver damage. Stresses, such as weather, environment, poor nutrition, transportation and handling, can also cause the liver cells to die and release the stored copper into the bloodstream.

    Affected sheep are lethargic and anemic. They may grind their teeth incessantly and experience extreme thirst. Membranes are very pale and may appear yellow, as jaundice sets in. Urine is a bloody color. Death usually occurs 1 to 2 days after the onset of clinical symptoms. At post-mortem, tissues are pale to dark yellow and the kidneys are a very dark color.
  6. Crissa

    Crissa New Member

    Oct 7, 2007
    Cashion, Oklahoma
    That's great information Shelly! I knew that it was an accumulation process, but I couldn't remember everything.
  7. kelebek

    kelebek New Member

    Oct 5, 2007
    South Texas
    That is awesome info! Thanks :wink:

    I checked on the sheep and all were fine, but I will definately try what you said about the pan. I will pick up "sheep" minerals tomorrow.

    I am feeding an orchard, brome, timothy mix hay (real nice and nutrient tested very high). I will be putting them back out here within the next week or two where I can keep the minerals out for them - so that will help. None of them ever had minerals until they came here last May

    Thanks all!!