Bainbridge Vets can provide a complete service for all your sheep health needs. We offer vaccines and wormers at competitive prices with the advice you need to use the correct product at the correct time. We can offer individual animal treatment or flock level consultancy. We feel sheep are an often neglected area and much can be done quite simply to increase their welfare, your productivity and your profits!
Worm Egg Counts and Advice
Every time we use a wormer we increase the number of resistant worms in the population. We are finding more farms every year with resistance to white drenches and resistance to other products is on the increase. By using wormers when you don’t need to you create two problems: you waste your time effort and money and you reduce the effectiveness of the products by a little bit.
The solution is simple – we need to use wormers only when they are vital for the health of our flocks. This has to be based on evidence and that evidence comes from faecal egg counts. We can run them same day at the practice and get you a result fast. By not using wormers when we don’t have to we preserve the cheaper wormers for when we need them.
The best way of getting resistant worms into your flock is not actually to breed them yourself by over-worming; it’s to buy them in. ALL SHEEP BROUGHT ONTO THE FARM REQUIRE A QUARANTINE DRENCH INCLUDING YOUR OWN SHEEP IF THEY HAVE BEEN OVERWINTERED ELSEWHERE. This is one simple thing you can really do to help yourself.
Lameness and Foot Rot Eradication
Everybody has lame sheep, but it’s not something we just have to live with. There are a number of pro-active things that can be done to reduce the problem to a manageable level. The first, and most important thing, is for us to come and have a look and see what diseases you are suffering from. This falls in with our flock health planning but we have experience with footrot eradication schemes either by vaccination or whole flock treatment.
Both Davinia and Pippa are certified sheep lameness advisors!
Worm egg counts are done in the practice with a quick turnaround. We always aim to report same day (if sample with us before lunch) but if you speak to us we can often do it much faster. This is an absolutely vital management tool for making sure that the sheep need worming and for when we need that first drench for nematodirus in lambs. So many people waste the vital first nematodirus dose by doing it too early.
We have a blood analyser and can measure calcium, and blood ketones (twin lamb disease) and do some larger profiles to see how the kidneys are functioning. If further tests are required then we send them to a private laboratory with a fast turnaround.
Flock Health Planning
Our rather ambitious goal is to have some kind of flock health plan in place on every single one of our farms. We can go into as much or as little detail as you want, but a basic document and discussion can save you a lot of money. The sheep industry has an enormous amount of waste that can be reduced. Lame sheep, mineral deficiencies, lamb mortality, abortion and infertility are the areas costing you. Many people use the wrong vaccines or vaccines at incorrect times. People waste a lot of time worming sheep that don’t need it (see section below!). Have a chat to us and we can sort something out.
We have a legal obligation that animals we prescribe drugs for are ‘under our care’. This means that it is no longer acceptable to just turn up at lambing time for some drugs when we haven’t seen a sheep of yours for a long time. We are looking at getting on to a lot of these farms in advance of lambing time for a visit and an introduction to health planning at a very competitive cost.
We have a state of the art facility for examination, treating and lambing sheep at the surgery. We have facilities for sheep to be left for treatment or lambing if a vet not immediately available. We have a secure drive through shed and a dedicated lab and post mortem facility.
We have the facilities to fertility test tups before the breeding season begins at the surgery in Askrigg. We perform a thorough examination of semen to including a full physical examination, electroejaculation and semen staining. We provide a certificate of results.
We also have an artificial vagina for tup use – this allows us to collect natural semen samples from a tup, but does require a ewe in heat at the time. The sample may be more representative and is required if you were wanting to freeze semen.
There are a number of interventions that you can do to shorten the breeding period and tighten up the lambing period. We have good experience of using vasectomised sheep as teasers – this can be very effective. The other main possibility is using progesterone sponges to synchronise sheep (Chronogest CR). We can insert them at the surgery, at your farm or you can do it yourself. You need a plan drawing up with one of the vets to make sure you are using the correct product, at the correct dose at the correct time.
We also perform vasectomies and from 2020 can offer artificial insemination.
Blood work and Metabolic Profiling
We routinely perform blood samples in sheep to help improve their performance this usually involves mineral and trace element analysis and we are well trained in interpreting these. We also recommend metabolic profiling in ewes. This is performed 3 weeks before lambing and allows us to assess the sheep’s utilisation of their diet and allow us to predict the quality of the colostrum the ewe will produce. This is particularly important with the reduction. In antibiotic use in neonatal lambs.
We routinely perform through post-mortems helping you get the most information as to why your sheep may have died and allowing you to protect the rest of your flock.
All our vets are qualified OVs (Official Veterinarians) on the appropriate panels to export the following:
- Export of farm animals
- Export of animal products (e.g. hides, and skins) and materials (e.g. straw)
- Export of semen and embryos
- Export of cattle, sheep and pigs destined for fattening, production or slaughter to other EU member states.
- Export of small animals
Further information on the following site