We are nearing winter and cows are slowly making their way inside for the dark nights. Most ewes have by now seen the tup and are off onto winter grazing. The months to come have us SQPs thinking about fluke and your housing dosing.

Fluke

Typically seen in ‘boggy’ areas/ fields that hold water/muddy gateways

  • The life cycle is very complicated! There MUST be a mud snail present to complete the cycle.
  •  Not all flukicides kill every stage of fluke – always check with your vet or SQP before choosing product.

Signs of chronic fluke in both sheep and cattle:

  • Anaemia
  • Poor fertility
  • Bottlejaw
  • Chronic diarrhoea
  • Reduced milk yield
  • Excessive weight loss
  • Death

When we treat depends on the moving of animals, the risk and what product we are using. Please speak to us before treating to determine the best action.

Housing

As with fluke, the housing dose depends on when we need to treat. When dosing at the point of housing(the day of), fluke needs to be eradicated with flukicide that kills all stages; otherwise, a second dose may be required.
Similarly, worming products that are long-acting – clear products are the best choice for less animal handling and less frequent administration when used correctly. Also do not forget about ectoparasites! Lice will affect growth rates if an infestation occurs. These can be treated with an ML clear wormer when worming is necessary as well. If housed all year round and no need to worm- do not use a wormer to treat for lice. Pyrethroid products are best to be used in this situation to avoid causing worm resistance.