Originally Posted by zzGypsy
if she's a pet, and seeks petting and ear scratching or a rub under her chin, then I think doing that is just fine. if she's not used to being handled, or gets nervous, jumpy or wary when she's handled, I'd let her be... you'll feel better, but it will add to her stress.
on the b vitamins, I'll just say that I've got 3 experienced sheep vets who say it works. I've had success with using it to restart sheep after major surgery and major illnesses... sheep we really did not expect to make it. two different vets commented that they stopped telling me to expect a sheep we were treating might die - because I usually was able to save them.
Pay Dr. Sara's farm call... get your second opinion. this vet already told you that he doesn't know much about sheep, and your instincts are telling you you're not comfortable with him, so I'd trust that.
what did this vet say about the additional banamine shots?
did he talk to you about keeping her hydrated / continuing the sheepdrench / etc.? if he didn't, I think he's not done everything he should in terms of educating you and giving you your best shot at saving her.
did he tell you when to have the next fecal done? the only way to know if this wormer worked is to do a follow up fecal test. otherwise, it's just guessing.
I'd be very intersted in what Dr. Sara says about "plugging the holes"... we've never had a critical anemia so I havn't had to address it, but I always want to learn...
probios are a good idea, they will certainly help once her gut heals and she starts to eat, but they do take a while to build up, so they won't help with the current crisis.
re: not worming: worm load is not caused by having wormed in the past, and sheep certainly can come to the state your ewe is in because they've not been wormed when they need it. the right thing to do here is get a fecal done on all your sheep - you don't want to find out too late that there are others in your flock that need worming. if their fecal count is low, you'll know you're doing the right thing with them by not worming. if it's not low enough, you'll know that your current methods aren't working and you need to act to prevent more crisis anemia treatment and the posibility of losing them. I'm not a fan of worming just on general purposes - it contributes to resistant worms and does nothing good for the sheep if they don't need it. but given that you've already got a crisis on your hands, it's important to find out if it's just this one sheep, or if she's just the first one to crash.
your girl has a sweet face, and I'm particularly fond of black sheep, about a third of mine are black...
on giving up, yes, sheep do that. that's part of why I think the b vitamins and banamine are important... she's got to eat and drink and if she's miserable and weak, she may not have the fight in her to get it done. if her buddy lamb hangs with her, that's a help, sheep feel more secure if they're not alone.
did you try offering her the pepto bisomol? peppermint flavor works with my sheep when all else fails. pepto flavored bran mash with soaked alfalfa pellets would help if she'll eat it. the sunflower leaves are good if she'll eat them.
as I said before, worming with the right drug will fix the cause, but you've still got to get her through the next few weeks while she recovers - hydration and calories are what's going to do that. and the more comfortable she feels, the less likely she is to quit trying.
one more thing to ask Dr. Sara about is Redcell. personally I haven't noticed that it helps when building horses up from anemia, but I've got a goat breeder friend who swears it does, and I recently heard a vet say so in a lecture ... the caution would be I don't know 1) if it works and 2) if it's safe for sheep. at any rate, you can ask about it, I'd be interested in what Dr. Sara has to say about it.
so, there you know what I'd be doing... second opinion with the other vet, then hydrate, drench, coax with tasty treats, b vitamin shots, banamine shots, keep in the company of other sheep if they're gentle and friendly with her. and getting fecals on everybody (barbadose are more worm resistant, but not worm-proof.)
BTW, even my best vets don't remember most of my animals's names... not even during the visit... they see a lot of animals. but most of them remember which animal when I describe them over the phone this way "the white sheep with the black eyeliner... the one we treated for an abscess on her shoulder... "