Is she miscarrying?

BSue

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This ewe has been with a ram since January. I've been waiting to see signs of a pregnancy but nothing so far. Then yesterday I see some dried blood on her vulva. Again today I see a little bit but nothing major. She is eating and acting normal. Could this be a sign of a miscarriage?

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Sheepshape

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Rams can be ' a bit too enthusiastic' and cause bleeding , especially when the ewe is not in season and has been trying to escape from his advances.

Any spontaneous abortion causes blood around the vulva, even if it is pretty early on.
 

Ridgetop

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Since she has been with the ram since January, she may be ready to lamb. The smell of imminent birthing can mimic the smell of estrus, causing the ram to try to breed her.

A couple days after the ram marked several of my ewes, they lambed!!! I had turned them in with him when their lambs were 2-3 months old. They are Dorpers so they bred and I missed it although he was wearing a harness then too. 5 ewes marked and 5 ewes lambed several days later! Quickest pregnancies on record! Looked back and sure enough they were in with him 5 months previously. He asked for a performance raise!

We got a guardian llama that was not gelded. When the dairy goats kidded he went after them trying to breed them. The smell is similar. He went to the vet immediately.

I would pull her out of the ram's pen and watch her for a week or so. Since she did not show much signs of pregnancy last time she could be pregnant and due soon. The ale color and non swollen appearance of the vulva doesn't look pregnant and due immediately.

What breed is she? Most wooled sheep are seasonal breeders, but some are not.
 

Ridgetop

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I read your lambing thread from last year. You definitely have a wool breed – from the heavy fleece and the horns some type of Merino cross perhaps. Most wool breeds are seasonal breeders. That means that the breeding season is based on daylight hours. The ewes will start to cycle as the daylight hours decrease and temperatures cool down. Seasonal breeding mature rams can be affected by heat – when the temperatures are extremely hot, they can become temporarily sterile.

It looks like you are in Ecuador, right?

Eduador is one of the southern hemisphere countries where summer and winter seasons are reversed. Your winter is June through September while your summer months are October to May.

Here in the northern hemisphere, our seasonal breeding sheep breed between September and January, in the fall when the days begin to get shorter and cooler, and lamb in the spring as the days get longer and warmer.

Since you are in the southern hemisphere, your fall season (and shortening daylight hours) will be between May and October. If your sheep are seasonal breeders, you can expect your ewe to start cycling in May, and breed between May and October. That means that your lambs would normally be born between October and February. Possibly even as late as March. Since you purchased your lambs in June at approximately 3 months old, they could have been born in late February/early March, at the very end of the lambing season.

Your first lamb was born in May 2019. This would have been out of season for your climate and the beginning of the breeding season. Since the ewe had just lambed in May, she would not have come back into heat during that breeding season. She would not have cycled again until this year at the normal breeding time.

Now that the ewe is mature, she has adjusted her metabolism to a daylight hour cycle. Her 8 months old lamb should be cycling this year as well, although some ewe lambs do not produce their first lambs until they are between 12 and 18 months old, depending on when they were born, time of the year, size and breed, etc.

If your ewe is cycling now, according to daylight hour length in the southern hemisphere, you should watch the ewe and lamb to see if the ram is interested in eiher at different times of the month. Sheep usually cycle every 14-17 days. Her vulva might appear slightly redder and swollen at that time indicating estrus. In that case both the ewe and her lamb could cycle and be bred for lambs to arrive between October 2020 and May of 2021.

If the ram was rough with the ewe when trying to breed, he could have caused a slight tear or scrape on the vulva, especially if she was not willing to stand for him. He has horns and could have accidently caught her with one.

What months do you usually see young lambs offered for sale in the market? This will give you an idea of when the normal lambing season occurs in your area. If no young lambs are being sold right now, then it is probably not normal lambing season.
 

Ridgetop

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Since he is interested in both of them now, it is probably your breeding season right not. Sorry about the confusion in dates, I thought you said that the ewe had lambed first in May. Breeding in May and lambing in October would be right for your location.

You should have lambs in 5 or 6 months. Congratulations!

By the way, the lip curling is known as flehmen. It is used by some animal species to show extreme interest in something. In your ram's case, a female in estrus! It is pretty funny to watch.
 

BSue

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Well, yesterday I found Polyester actively mating so the bleeding wasn't a miscarriage, more likely an overactive ram. I have my calendar marked for November 14th. :woot
 

Beekissed

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That's not a real pregnant looking vulva...but I've never seen blood on the vulva other than with a birthing process of some kind. Maybe folks who have had more sheep/goat experience could chime in?
 

purplequeenvt

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Honestly, she doesn’t look very pregnant to me. What breed is she? Some breeds (like my Shetlands) are very seasonal breeders.
 
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