Please give me some ideas on building a sheep deck chair?

Jeff n Jenny

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Howdy!
I bought the Premier 1 Deck Chair. It's a good piece of equipment, no doubt!

BUT, our sheep did not like it. I see in one pic they have a "seat-belt" restraint, that's new.
The vids I watched before the purchase make me wonder if sedatives were used??
It still took two us to flip the chair and one to hold the sheep while the other worked on the sheep.

If your girls are pregnant, it puts most of their weight under their tail where it doesn't need to be.
What I saw made me cringe with thoughts of prolapse (we never had that problem).

If you want to build one, think of a stretcher frame (if you can find one (ask your FD/Rescue folks/ski patrol) with a canvas-like fabric and grommets for Bungie cords. Our sheep thrashed around and tried to wiggle to the side or out the bottom. We tried different heights/angles but could not get the knack. I would not build a wooden frim without metal corner supports. Bolts, no nails or screws, they will work loose.

I want to try a sling so I can hoist them up.
I may need several if it takes a minute for them to settle. I can hoist three and go back to the first to work.
1) Easier on my back
2) leg restraints to prevent flailing hoofs.
3) some way to spin them belly up might be nice ??
Hang'n out with the sheep :)

A spin table would be nice!
Id like to build one of them too...one day :) (time/money/priorities)

The traditional method of sitting them on their tail has worked forever, and on a stand would be a back saver.
Let the wheels turn :)

Whatever you decide, make it a pleasant experience for them. Have a treat ready for them coming out of the chair so they walk away with a positive memory.
 

Grant

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The replacement netting on Premier is $27. That and some conduit, maybe a 1x6 for the kick plate should do it. Cross pieces can be drilled and bolted in pretty easily.
 

Jeff n Jenny

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The replacement netting on Premier is $27. That and some conduit, maybe a 1x6 for the kick plate should do it. Cross pieces can be drilled and bolted in pretty easily.
Welding would work too. EMT is cheap and 3/4" can be hand bent with a hickey or homemade jig.
You might need to slide a larger piece of pipe over it (sleeve) for leverage.
I'd upsize but shy away from 1/2"
 

secuono

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Howdy!
I bought the Premier 1 Deck Chair. It's a good piece of equipment, no doubt!

BUT, our sheep did not like it. I see in one pic they have a "seat-belt" restraint, that's new.
The vids I watched before the purchase make me wonder if sedatives were used??
It still took two us to flip the chair and one to hold the sheep while the other worked on the sheep.

If your girls are pregnant, it puts most of their weight under their tail where it doesn't need to be.
What I saw made me cringe with thoughts of prolapse (we never had that problem).

If you want to build one, think of a stretcher frame (if you can find one (ask your FD/Rescue folks/ski patrol) with a canvas-like fabric and grommets for Bungie cords. Our sheep thrashed around and tried to wiggle to the side or out the bottom. We tried different heights/angles but could not get the knack. I would not build a wooden frim without metal corner supports. Bolts, no nails or screws, they will work loose.

I want to try a sling so I can hoist them up.
I may need several if it takes a minute for them to settle. I can hoist three and go back to the first to work.
1) Easier on my back
2) leg restraints to prevent flailing hoofs.
3) some way to spin them belly up might be nice ??
Hang'n out with the sheep :)

A spin table would be nice!
Id like to build one of them too...one day :) (time/money/priorities)

The traditional method of sitting them on their tail has worked forever, and on a stand would be a back saver.
Let the wheels turn :)

Whatever you decide, make it a pleasant experience for them. Have a treat ready for them coming out of the chair so they walk away with a positive memory.

This is a thread from 2016.

I ended up buying the chair for my mini sheep.
It's too tall to simply tilt them over into it.
It catches their tails and badly bends them, so I had to lift them and fix tails.
Way, way too much trouble to adjust width.
Some sheep were able to thrash and flip over, that was fun extracting them from the chair....
To remove sheep, I pulled both front legs, like you would helping a person up. Tilting chair was too much work.
I had already tied chair to board, as it came along as I tried to pull sheep out.
Trying to back them up to it and lining them up was difficult.
I was literally lifting short, fat, 100-130# sheep clear into the air to get them into the chair. I was not happy.
I basically need the chair down in a shallow hole to get them in easily. Even my larger breeds weren't all that much easier to get in...
I remember a lot of all over pain kicking in at about 10 sheep and by 15 sheep, I was more than ready to toss the chair into a volcano. Lol
I wonder if those old, cheap, simple human kid strollers might work better...
I'm sure I'm forgetting other struggles with it...



As for your hoist idea.
I made one, but the problem, when it comes to larger numbers of sheep, is time.
I setup a multi level pulley system, but it took forever to get that sheep up.
Easy enough to get sling under them, but they have no patience to wait while I rapidly pull the rope and the sling slowly lifts...
Sheep jump and thrash until no foot can reach the ground.
Other big problem is keeping them from sliding out the front. Head n necks are heavy!
What happens with all my attempts to brace them in is that the belt always ends up slowly suffocating them. Ugh. I couldn't find a way to do it w/o that problem. The pulley system is still setup, so I'll be trying again in a couple months to fix that problem. Maybe attaching pool noodles in a way that leaves just enough gap for the throat will help...idk...
 

Jeff n Jenny

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This is a thread from 2016.

I ended up buying the chair for my mini sheep.
It's too tall to simply tilt them over into it.
It catches their tails and badly bends them, so I had to lift them and fix tails.
Way, way too much trouble to adjust width.
Some sheep were able to thrash and flip over, that was fun extracting them from the chair....
To remove sheep, I pulled both front legs, like you would helping a person up. Tilting chair was too much work.
I had already tied chair to board, as it came along as I tried to pull sheep out.
Trying to back them up to it and lining them up was difficult.
I was literally lifting short, fat, 100-130# sheep clear into the air to get them into the chair. I was not happy.
I basically need the chair down in a shallow hole to get them in easily. Even my larger breeds weren't all that much easier to get in...
I remember a lot of all over pain kicking in at about 10 sheep and by 15 sheep, I was more than ready to toss the chair into a volcano. Lol
I wonder if those old, cheap, simple human kid strollers might work better...
I'm sure I'm forgetting other struggles with it...



As for your hoist idea.
I made one, but the problem, when it comes to larger numbers of sheep, is time.
I setup a multi level pulley system, but it took forever to get that sheep up.
Easy enough to get sling under them, but they have no patience to wait while I rapidly pull the rope and the sling slowly lifts...
Sheep jump and thrash until no foot can reach the ground.
Other big problem is keeping them from sliding out the front. Head n necks are heavy!
What happens with all my attempts to brace them in is that the belt always ends up slowly suffocating them. Ugh. I couldn't find a way to do it w/o that problem. The pulley system is still setup, so I'll be trying again in a couple months to fix that problem. Maybe attaching pool noodles in a way that leaves just enough gap for the throat will help...idk...
Howdy!
I like your creativity. Thank you for sharing.
I like the idea of a lever rather than cranking around small pulleys - too slow.
Maybe an old bike rim for the radial fulcrum?
A canvas sling with lots of grommets to attach (clip) restraints.
Maybe a piece of old fire hose sewed in for support?
They have to be supported to be calm and contained.
I agree, If they can reach something, they will kick off it to get free. Natural escape mode.
A rolling shoot could help contain them while hoisting, and move to the next one for loading.
Let's keep this going
 

YourRabbitGirl

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Howdy!
I bought the Premier 1 Deck Chair. It's a good piece of equipment, no doubt!

BUT, our sheep did not like it. I see in one pic they have a "seat-belt" restraint, that's new.
The vids I watched before the purchase make me wonder if sedatives were used??
It still took two us to flip the chair and one to hold the sheep while the other worked on the sheep.

If your girls are pregnant, it puts most of their weight under their tail where it doesn't need to be.
What I saw made me cringe with thoughts of prolapse (we never had that problem).

If you want to build one, think of a stretcher frame (if you can find one (ask your FD/Rescue folks/ski patrol) with a canvas-like fabric and grommets for Bungie cords. Our sheep thrashed around and tried to wiggle to the side or out the bottom. We tried different heights/angles but could not get the knack. I would not build a wooden frim without metal corner supports. Bolts, no nails or screws, they will work loose.

I want to try a sling so I can hoist them up.
I may need several if it takes a minute for them to settle. I can hoist three and go back to the first to work.
1) Easier on my back
2) leg restraints to prevent flailing hoofs.
3) some way to spin them belly up might be nice ??
Hang'n out with the sheep :)

A spin table would be nice!
Id like to build one of them too...one day :) (time/money/priorities)

The traditional method of sitting them on their tail has worked forever, and on a stand would be a back saver.
Let the wheels turn :)

Whatever you decide, make it a pleasant experience for them. Have a treat ready for them coming out of the chair so they walk away with a positive memory.
I found some interesting information on Pinterest. you might need to check those out. By the way. Good job on those sheep. keep up the good work.
 

ElenaDeborah11

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Mulling this over, and having looked at some hand trucks/trolleys, I think converting a wider one to make a sheep chair in the garden would be the answer. There are old hand trucks around which could be modified using a hacksaw and file to remove the straight back brace part and, if the frame is strong enough for the 70-80kg sheep without the brace, adding netting and a strap to hold the sheep in place.

The hand truck wheels are a great attraction as they enable easy moving of the truck around *to* the sheep and also easy tipping it back into position and forward to let it out afterward.

If a curved brace is needed then likely a local engineer could weld one on. And the handles could be hooked on to yard or fence rails.
 
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soarwitheagles

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Wow, haven't checked this thread out in many, many moons!

Here's some of my thoughts after trying many, many different methods:

1. I believe there are various successful ways to use sheep chairs...yet, for us, they never really worked.
2. We also built a really, really nice sheep squeeze, but that also did not work [our sheep would not go in to it]!
3. For drenching, I simply corralled the sheep, grabbed one at a time, straddled it and put it in an arm lock similar to a MMA rear naked choke hold [without choking the sheep], wife then shot the drench into its mouth, then opened the sheep gate/shute and I let each animal go, one at a time. We did this at times to 40+ sheep. It was like an extended wrestling match that lasted over an hour each time we did the entire flock and was excellent for building physical fitness and endurance, cardio fitness, muscle strength and endurance. I felt I was ready to take on the entire world after each event.

Special warnings....

Horned rams- we exercised EXTREME CAUTION, BECAUSE WE FELT THEY COULD EASILY CREATE FATAL INJURIES TO US. I went out of my way to hold their horns in a manner that they could not break free...yet now I feel attempting to do this with larger male horned rams would not be wise!

Cutting/trimming hooves...for us, NEVER, EVER AGAIN! While attempting to trim the hooves of our most gentle, bottle fed ram, he kicked his legs so violently during the attempted process and I received a very, very deep laceration from the razor sharp hoof shears!

I realize that many, many professional sheep shepherds trim hooves by hand with and without a sheep chair...but for me, never, ever, ever again! I could have easily experienced a life threatening severed artery and now I am super thankful I didn't!

We sell our male sheep within 8-10 months old and the females 1-3 years old, so we have no need to trim sheep hooves. If I was to begin keeping sheep longer and needed to trim hooves, I would ONLY consider it if I had a professional sheep squeeze/table that rotated and that could also secure each hoof to be trimmed and perhaps a professional person that had lots and lots of experience.

My take away from the last 5 years is that for some reason, none of our sheep would lay there super docile and super safe as we trimmed their hooves as I saw on the youtube videos. Not sure if I was doing something wrong or if it was simply due to the type of sheep [American blackbellies and Dorpers].

I am open to ideas or suggestions as to why it did not work for us...

Again, I realize some people have no problem trimming hooves of sheep...our sheep are not people friendly and they would fight the entire process...even our most tame people friendly ram fought it like he was fighting for his life and I paid dearly for it.

I finally had to ask a vet friend to come over and she put our beloved bottle fed pet ram to sleep and then we safely trimmed his hooves...it was kinda fun, but that would be so expensive if we had to do it to the entire flock...

Hope this helps!

Soar
 
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Beekissed

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I am open to ideas or suggestions as to why it did not work for us...
Breed selection, selection within the breed and management would likely have helped. I cull all sheep that need regular trimming of feet....I've found that it's usually those with white hooves that need trimming at all~not sure why that is. Dorpers seem to have more problems with hooves than do Katahdins and that could be why....lot of Dorpers have white hooves.

I also choose a breed that's known to fatten and live well on grass and browse rather than having to grain~grain is well known to grow hoof and horn, neither of which is desired in my shepherding. That's one reason I chose hair sheep and Katahdin, in particular. I've found they stay fat on nasty old rotten hay, poor graze and brush, so no grains needed.

My sheep are also wild as deer, so putting them into the deck chair isn't easy, they struggle so mightily while there that they can almost get out. If you'll notice, most of those demonstrations with sheep in those chairs are done on woolly breeds....which have been handled a lot for shearing, hoof trimming, deworming and even dipping. They are mild as puppies compared to my crew.

Just trimmed a set of hooves in the field, with the help of my son, and it was our smallest ewe lamb....and she fought like a tiger even while sitting on her rear. She will be culled this season, for her size and also for her white hooves that need trimming and she's just turned a year old. High maintenance, low yield stock...she's outta here.
 

soarwitheagles

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Breed selection, selection within the breed and management would likely have helped. I cull all sheep that need regular trimming of feet....I've found that it's usually those with white hooves that need trimming at all~not sure why that is. Dorpers seem to have more problems with hooves than do Katahdins and that could be why....lot of Dorpers have white hooves.

I also choose a breed that's known to fatten and live well on grass and browse rather than having to grain~grain is well known to grow hoof and horn, neither of which is desired in my shepherding. That's one reason I chose hair sheep and Katahdin, in particular. I've found they stay fat on nasty old rotten hay, poor graze and brush, so no grains needed.

My sheep are also wild as deer, so putting them into the deck chair isn't easy, they struggle so mightily while there that they can almost get out. If you'll notice, most of those demonstrations with sheep in those chairs are done on woolly breeds....which have been handled a lot for shearing, hoof trimming, deworming and even dipping. They are mild as puppies compared to my crew.

Just trimmed a set of hooves in the field, with the help of my son, and it was our smallest ewe lamb....and she fought like a tiger even while sitting on her rear. She will be culled this season, for her size and also for her white hooves that need trimming and she's just turned a year old. High maintenance, low yield stock...she's outta here.
Beekissed,

Thank you for the super informative post. I was beginning to think I was the only person that was struggling with trimming the hooves! Katahdin...wow, that is the exact breed we were gonna experiment with next. My neighbor offered to sell me some 8 week old lambs...but our ranch is being sold, so now our plans have changed. Hopefully we can try the Katahdin's at our next ranch.

We avoid all wooly breeds due to shearing costs...so I suppose the sheep chairs are out of the question for us.

Thanks again for sharing your insights...I wish I had asked you before we attempted to trim our pet Snow's [white two year old male dorper] hooves. It sure was fun watching him as the vet medication kicked in...he looked as if drank way too much tequila. What amazed me most was after trimming his hooves, the vet gave him a different injection that woke him right up.

Vet is our neighbor and she agreed to be paid in honey...so it worked out well for all of us!

Cheers!
 

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