Article Text

Effectiveness in commercial practice of a new system for detecting and treating hypothermia in newborn lambs
  1. FA Eales,
  2. J Small,
  3. IA Dickson,
  4. ME Smith and
  5. AW Speedy

Abstract

A new system for the detection and treatment of hypothermia in newborn lambs was evaluated on 30 commercial farms. This system comprised the detection of hypothermia with the aid of an electronic thermometer, the reversal of hypoglycaemia in lambs aged more than five hours by an intraperitoneal injection of glucose solution, warming in air at 40 degrees C and careful management after warming. Of all lambs treated, 69 per cent were alive one week later. The majority of lambs which were treated and lived were subsequently reared on ewes. Treatment was more successful in lambs aged less than five hours (76 per cent) than in older lambs (64 per cent). Higher success rates were recorded when the hypothermia was detected in the temperature range of 37.0 to 39.0 degrees C (83 per cent) than when it was only detected at a temperature of less than 37.0 degrees C (65 per cent). Twins and triplet lambs were more susceptible to hypothermia than singles.

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