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Various Digestive Atiments


VARIOUS DIGESTIVE ATIMENTS A num ber of other digestive disturbances are occasionally observed in sheep, such as chronic bloat, which may best be con trolled by the use of laxatives and a tonic such as just mentioned; overload ing of the paunch, which appears to be due in most cases to overeating, and a consequent partial paralysis of the paunch; and stomach staggers, which is due to irritation and inflammation of the third stomach, resulting from th.2 use of innutritious food. A change of diet and the use of Epsom salts in doses of 6 ounces, or flaxseed tea will usually con trol this trouble. Occasionally sheep choke on foreign bodies in the gullet. An occasional cause of choking is found in turnips, potatoes, or ears of corn. The symptoms need not be described since they are so obvious as to be readily rec ognizable. It is usually possible to remove such materials in the gullet by means of pressure and manipulation with the bands.

White scours This frequently occurs, especially in young lambs kept under unsanitary conditions in badly crowded quarters. It is usually a contagious dis ease and is accompanied with considera ble fever, bloating, diarrhea and death in is large percentage of eases. The treat ment should be mainly preventive, con sisting in providing clean quarters and the use of disinfectants about the prem ises. Seine benefit may be derived from the administration of subnitrate of bis muth in doses of 1 dram.

Unrecognizable diseases eases as inflammation of the fourth stom ach and intestines, atrophy of the liver, jaundice, peritonitis, and inflammation of the kidneys are accompanied with symptoms which cannot always be recog nized by the farmer and will, therefore, require diagnosis and treatment by the veterinarian Catarrh and lambs are quite subject to catarrhal conditions of the nasal passages, due to exposure during inclement seasons, especially just after the animals have been sheared. If caught in cold rain storms at such times a considerable percentage of the flock may develop colds and in some cases the symptoms of catarrh are also accom panied with genera] lameness and occa sionally paralysis and death. As a rule, however, there is merely a slight sneez ing and coughing which commonly goes by the name of snuffles. If the animals are placed in warm, dry quarters and given small doses, say 1/4 ounce of niter and common salt, they usually recover within a few days. Under range condi tions it is obviously impossible to treat all of the animals which may be affected and it is, therefore, necessary to rely upon the effect of dry air and sunshine in checking the progress of the trouble.

Respiratory ailments A number of diseases of the respiratory passages in cluding the larynx, wind pipe, bronchi, and lungs occur in sheep, following such exposure as sometimes causes colds or as a result of infection. In some cases croup results, especially in young lambs. This disease most commonly occurs after shutting the animals up in too close and hot quarters, especially if the litter is of a dusty nature. The disease is accom panied by a hacking cough, followed by the development of false membranes in the nose. It must be treated promptly in order to secure satisfactory results. Sul phate of soda in doses of pound should be given by way of the mouth at once and a mustard poulti or some other blister may be applied to the wind pipe. In cases of suffocation it may be neces sary to open the wind pipe as is done in the operation called tracheotomy. This operation frequently becomes necessary in cases of laryngit:a, which is a compar atively rare disease in sheep and is due to exposure to rain or confinement in close, unsanitary buildings. The symp toms are- persistent coughing, snuffling, and soreness of the throat. The treat ment should consist in proper ventilation and disinfection of the sheep quarters, after which the affected animals may be made to inhale sulphur fumes or the water vapor from a boiling kettle. The treatments of sulphate of soda at the rate of 2 pounds daily for each 100 head of sheep usually give satisfactory results.

Croupous bronehitis This trouble is usually the result of inhaling irritating gases or smoke, especially such as comes from smelters. Tn the vicinity of smelters the disease may occur in large numbers of animals, otherwise it is obviously not very frequent. Occasionally this trouble develops in connection with certain other contagious diseases which cause a high temperature and general prostration of the animal. Counter-irritants applied to the chest may give some relief but, as a rule, treatment for the disease is quite unsatisfactory.

Croupous pneumonia This disease is likewise caused by confinement in too warm buildings or allowing heavy fleeces to remain too long after the advent of hot weather. It usually takes a very acute form, indicating congestion and inflammation of the lungs. Direct treat ment for the disease is almost entirely without avail, but occasionally relief may be obtained from the administration of castor oil in doses of 2 or 3 ounces fol lowed by ammonium acetate in 1/2 ounce doses or ecetanilid in doses of ounces.

Pleurisy connection with pneu monia, pleurisy may sometimes occur and may be recognized by the high fever, rapid pulse, and short, jerky breathing accompanied with a dry, painful cough. The same treatment should be used as in pneumonia but is not very satisfac tory.

Blood and nervous ber of diseases of the blood system and nervous system occur in sheep, but the symptoms are not particularly character istic and the troubles, if serious, usually require the attention of the veterinarian. It is, therefore, useless to discuss these diseases in this connection more than briefly to mention the fact that the more important ones are dropsy, inflammation of the heart, thumps, inflammation of the brain, cerebrospinal meningitis, apo plexy, fits, paralysis, heat exhaustion and sunstroke. In the rare instances in which sunstroke occurs in sheep the an imal may usually be relieved by im mersing it in a tub or tank of cold water for a few minutes. It may then be given alcohol in ounce doses at frequent intervals and tincture of digitalis in tea spoon doses.

Abortion usually applied to sheep this term refers to the birth of the lamb at least 20 days before the normal period. Sometimes, however, it occurs much earlier and it is not observed at all. Abortion may be due to eating plants infested with ergot, smut, or other fungous diseases, to worry from dogs or other animals, jumping fences, exposure to severe storms, or the occurrence of an infectious disease which produces a high fever. Any mechanical injury to the abdomen may result in abortion. Many of these cases arc due to infection and wherever this form of the disease occurs it is necessary to get rid of the affected ewes. According to extensive statistics collected on the subject of abortion and sterility in ewes, it appears that from 4 to 8 per cent of most breeds of ewes abort, for one reason or another. While it is usually recommended that the dis ease be treated in a preventive way by avoiding the conditions which cause it, it is the best policy to fatten all ewes which have once aborted and sell them for mutton. It is useless to take further chances with them as breeding stock.

Garget This trouble may be due to exposure to cold soon after lambing, bruises caused by the lamb, or by strik ing against stones or other hard objects. The disease appears most frequently in old ewes and the time finally comes with every ewe when she can no longer be used for breeding purposes for the rea son that the udder is almost sure to be affected with garget or mammitis. On the western sheep ranges where little attention can be given to each particu lar ewe in regard to the condition of the udder, it has been found advisable not to keep ewes for breeding purposes be yond the age of about six years. In small flocks where individual treatment can be given to each affected ewe, doses of Epsom salts in 3 or 4 ounces may be given followed by an ointment applied directly to the udder and consisting of 4 ounces of vaseline, 2 ounces of cam phor ointment, and ounce of extract of belladonna. The ewe should also be thoroughly milked for a few days in or der to relieve the congestion of the udder Sore eyes Dust, pollen and other ma terials may cause an inflammation of the eyes and this trouble is particularly fre quent on the dry, dusty ranges, especially where the dust contains considerable alkali. If it is possible or desirable to give individual treatment in such eases, a good eye wash may be prepared by mixing 30 grains of boric acid and 15 grains of sulphate of zinc in 3 ounces of water. Occasionally an eye disease or ophthalmia appears in an apparently infectious form, but it may be due to the presence of dust as just mentioned and may affect a large number of animals giving the appearance of an infection. If the discharge from the eyes should become thick and purulent, it may be de sirable to shut the sheep up in a dark place. After bathing the eyes in warm water blow into them a mixture of equal parts of calomel and boric acid.

Eczema On account of the fact that the skin of sheep is so abundantly pro tected by the heavy coat of wool, eczema is of rare occurrence among these ani mals. Occasionally an eezemie conch Con of the skin is brought about as a result of parasitism of internal worms. A form of the disease known as moist. eczema occurs in sheep which are in poor condition and suffer from unusual exposure to cold rains. Eczema may ap pear most frequently on thin wooled sheep, especially in animals on which the wool parts on the back in such a man ner as to receive and hold water during rains storms. Recovery ordinarily takes place spontaneously and as a rule there is no satisfactory treatment except to change the conditions under which the sheep were kept so as to prevent the agencies which have caused the disease from continuing in operation. Other forms of eczema sometimes occur in sheep, for example, one which is quite similar to grease in the horse. Fagopy rism is also known in sheep. This is due to eating too much buckwheat or the milling products of this grain or to eating large quantities of wild buck wheat, smartweed, or other wild plants closely related to buckwheat. The symp toms consist in a swelling and slough ing off of the external part of the skin, particularly about the bead, face and other parts of the body covered only with short wool.

Foot rotApparently there are two forms of foot rot, the contagious and noncontagious. It is not always cer tain, however, that the slight cases which appear to be noncontagious are not caused by the specific organism of foot rot. Infection apparently takes place as a result of injuries to the hoof, partic ularly between the two halves of the hoof, and this infection is particularly dangerous when the hoofs are allowed to grow too long so as to inclose vari ous filthy substances between the two halves. As a result of an extensive study of this disease by 3fohler and Washburn it appears that the first evi dence of the disease is a slight lameness which rapidly increases, and a reddened, feverish condition of the hoof. The ex perienced sheepman is able to detect at once the existence of the disease by the peculiar odor of the infected hoofs. When no treatment is applied pus forms under the hoof and leads to the com plete loosening of the hoof, finally also attacking the bone. If no attention is given to the affected animal, the disease may assume a chronic form and lead to great malformation of the hoof and bone of the foot. Occasionally the toes be come twisted and elongated to the ex tent of 3 or 4 inches, being turned up at the end. Ordinarily there is consider able fever and the appetite is badly affected. The disease commonly appears in one foot but extends to the other three feet and spreads rapidly throughout the herd. According to the investigations of Mohler this disease is due to the pres ence of Bacillus necrophorus which causes a number of other similar troubles in other animals. In preventing this disease it is desirable to thoroughly in spect and quarantine sheep which are purchased from outside sources before they are allowed to enter the flock. It is also desirable to examine the feet of the herd at regular intervals for the pur pose of finding out whether the condi tion is satisfactory in all cases. Over grown hoofs should be pared away so that the wearing surface will come in regular and complete contact with the ground.

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