We had mentioned that Buckwheat, the ram, had been coughing. Originally we thought it was just the hay tickling his throat, but it's been going on now for a bit. Dr. Sherry took a blood sample from him - she worries that there might be Q Fever in our barn. That is a fatal virus that can also be transmitted to humans. We notified the previous owners of the sheep and he came over to talk to her, too. It's not something you hear a lot about, although she has done a lot of research into it. She also warned us it could be Ovine Progressive Pneumonia. It's all a bit overwhelming. How could we just be starting this flock and then stand to lose them all?
On a positive note, Elsie seems to be getting bit stronger, being bottle fed. It's quite the ordeal, trying to hold Apricot and nurse her, but adding the colostrum to the milk replacer seems important. And Elsie does try to nurse when I've got Apricot held still. Maybe she'll get strong enough to be able to stand up for her right to nurse. I think that Apricot is just so flighty that the smallest thing spooks her and Elsie isn't strong enough to stand up to her. So the bottle seems a good compromise. It can take her 20 minutes to finish her 1/2 cup milk - I doubt Apricot has that much patience.