Sheep losing wool

Fayette, MO(Zone 6a)

The same ewe that lost lots of her wool last year while very pregnant is losing it again this year. I had thought it was a calcium deficiency. But this year I have had lots of mineral out and don't think that's the case.

Anybody have any ideas what else could be the problem?

Caistor, United Kingdom(Zone 8b)

Is she loosing it down to the skin? Or just sloughing it natural. Could it be mange? We had a suffolk ewe that had mange and lost her wool in spots, poor thing looked funny. Lauri

Rockport, WA

Hi KathyJo,
what breed of sheep do you have? Do you shear them before you put them in breeding groups?
How old is the ewe? Is she scratching ( rubbing herself) against fences till there are raw areas or just loosing wool? I raise Icelandic and Katahdin sheep, so I have some experience in
both wool and hair sheep..

Fayette, MO(Zone 6a)

This just seems to be something that happens to her when she is very pregnant..

It doesn't seem spotty at all, or anything that I would think would be parasite related.. Mostly peeling off her very round abdomen.

Otherwise, she seems perfectly healthy.. Fat and sassy

I would guess her to be five. She is mostly suffolk and looks all suffolk.

I'm sure you've already looked for evidence of raised, reddened skin or scratching and no lice detectable, here, wool loss it's a sign of sheep scab although I don't know whether that occurs in the US.

As it's happened twice during late pregnancy, were she here in the UK I'd be thinking nutritional deficiency, can you be sure she is ingesting the mineral? If you can be sure it still could be she is a heavy user or has trouble metabolising some minerals and trace elements while she is gestating. The other reason I can think of is stress.

Is she displaying any other symptoms?

Just out of interest KathyJo what are her current rations?

Fayette, MO(Zone 6a)

They get all the hay they can eat. And can forage all winter.. I don't feed them much grain as they seem to not need it.

None of the other sheep seem to have this trouble.. But, I don't watch her so closely that I am sure she gets the mineral.. although she certainly has access. It's loose mineral that we pour in a tub.

I had a poke about after I last posted and it seems zinc deficiency can cause wool loss, if she's returning to normal after giving birth, it could be that or just the stress. Sounds like one of those odd little things that happens, is she young?

I sometimes think that sheep invent new things to worry the sheherd each year ;)

Fayette, MO(Zone 6a)

Thanks. When I check the contents of the mineral I'll check for that...

She always comes back to normal the next year before she is very pregnant.

Have a question on sheep lice. All my Romney and Merino sheep(6) have now lost wool over their ears, tails, back of leggs and on either side of body. I found live lice crawling around. Have shorn them and did a saturation of Premectin 2. However, they are still losing wool. I've researched and haven't found info that will help. I'm told to do it again in 2 weeks. It is cold here in Connecticut and I have had to put nylon coats on them. They don't seem to be itching anymore but are still losing wool. Any thoughts would be much appreciated.
Thanks, Jen

sorry, don't think I posted in the correct place

Fayette, MO(Zone 6a)

You will probably want to make sure they don't lay down in old bedding as well. Do they sleep in the barn at night? How do you think the lice was spread?

Still a good idea to make sure that they have all the vitamins and minerals they need, .

This is all probably stuff you already know... Just trying to help..

Thanks. I have been cleaning and spraying bedding and barn, as well. They do sleep in at night. The lice apparently jump from sheep to sheep in close contact. I'm wondering if it might be better to dust them instead of the pour-on method?
I had to ask my husband to go out and feed tonight as I was just too upset and couldn't see more wool missing.

Fayette, MO(Zone 6a)

I certainly understand how upsetting this kind of thing can be..

You might want to ask a Veterinarian.. and maybe you already have. That is one problem I didn't have..

Fayette, MO(Zone 6a)

I certainly understand how upsetting this kind of thing can be..

You might want to ask a Veterinarian.. and maybe you already have. That is one problem I didn't have..

Syracuse, NY

I have a Katahdin sheep mother and baby that I just purchased. The baby is three weeks old. The mother has large pieces of wool hanging off her and coming off. What is the cause of this?

Fayette, MO(Zone 6a)

Katahdin are hair sheep and lose their wool naturally. You won't have to shear them

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