Udders -- sheep vs. dairy goats

Discussion in 'Other Pets' started by dannyduprey, Jul 14, 2010.

  1. dannyduprey

    dannyduprey New Member

    Jun 7, 2010
    Venus, Florida
    In addition to our Lamancha goats, we have two Katahdin sheep that each had twins last weekend. We are trying to evaluate whether the lambs are getting enough milk.
    The ewe's udders don't look or feel at all like the dairy goats' udders. But maybe that's normal for animals that were not bred to be milked?
    Actually we also worried about the Lamancha's kids getting enough milk, since this was our first experience with kidding. But they have come along fine.
  2. liz

    liz Well-Known Member

    Oct 5, 2007
    Shelocta PA
    If your lambs are being normal happy babies then it's safe to assume they are getting plenty...I'm guessing here but isn't an ewes udder more tucked against their body and not capacious like a dairy goat?

  3. KW Farms

    KW Farms Moderator Supporting Member

    Jun 21, 2008
    Wapato, WA
    If the lambs are active and look alert and bright then i'd say they are getting enough. If they aren't getting enough you will see them act kind of slow, weak, or almost lethargic at times soon after they're born. Just kee an eye on them...I bet they will be fine.
  4. Crissa

    Crissa New Member

    Oct 7, 2007
    Cashion, Oklahoma
    Actually I've seen quite a few Katahdins that have udders to rival a dairy goat, but not all of them are like that. As long as they are acting normal they should be fine. You could always check their bellies once or twice a day to make sure they feel like they're getting their fill. Katahdins are normally very hardy and tend to be great mothers, but of course you can always have the oddball. If you have any questions feel free to ask me anything, I've been working with Katahdins for about 4 years now, not an expert by any means, but I think I know enough to help out. lol They are probably by far my favorite breed of sheep now.
  5. mrs. lam

    mrs. lam New Member

    Apr 20, 2010
    Very nice sheep. Very good mom's. Check the lambs belly's a couple of times a day. If you notice they aren't acting right then worry. If they are bouncing around like fools, your good. :p Congrats BTW! Pictures soon I hope? I love sheep.

    Try looking up Sheep! magazine on line. Maybe they have something that will help.

  6. dannyduprey

    dannyduprey New Member

    Jun 7, 2010
    Venus, Florida
    Thanks for the help. I got a more detailed description from our chief shepherd/goatherd/milkman:

    With Ewe #1 Ethel, her udder is about the size of a childs head, with large areas of the udder very hard, consisting of three or four size lump areas with the above size. The udder is not overly hot, however checking it often is very hard due to not being able to catch them. The milk is NOT discolored, sticky or bloody. There is very little milk coming out when I did catch them. Their appetites are very strong for feed and they eat grass without an issue. The only sign is the lumps. The second sheep #2, Lucy has a much smaller udder, the size of a large grapefruit, and all the descriptions above apply to the second one as well. Except the udder is mostly all hard. Both sheep are about 3 yrs of age and have kidded previously. Both sets of kids, 2 each, a buck and an ewe, seem to be gaining weight within normal ranges, and are all active, jumping around and playing. The adult Ewes mostly allow the kids to feed but grow impatient or ?? and move away from the kids after short periods of feeding.

    If I forgot anything that is important, ask and I'll do my best to describe the issue. I wasn't able to ever check their temperatures for fever. Both adult Ewes have received CD/T's and de-wormers recently, and the Lamancha method of checking under the eyelids are real pink to lightly red.