Herd vaccinations are a vital part of raising healthy sheep and lambs. One of the most recommended and widely used flock inoculations is called CD-T toxoid. CD-T toxin offers multifaceted protection in three ways: it protects against enterotoxemia caused by Clostridium perfringens types C and D, as well as against tetanus (also known as lockjaw) caused by Clostridium tetanus. Read on to learn more about this vital vaccine and the common lamb and sheep diseases it protects against.
Clostridal vaccines of 3, 7 and 8 lanes for sheep
Although the typical 3-way clostridal vaccine is sufficient in most cases, 7-way and 8-way clostridial vaccines are also available, providing greater coverage against clostridial diseases such as malignant edema and black leg. Vaccination against tetanus and enterotoxemia type C and D are the most common and effective options for flocks of sheep and lambs.
Vaccines against enterotoxemia type C and D
Also known as “hemorrhagic enteritis” or “bloody diarrhea,” type C enterotoxemia is most common in young lambs, often born within a few weeks. The main implication of this disease is that it causes a bloody infection in the small intestinal system of the lamb. The actual cause of this disease is sometimes difficult to assess, as it is also related to various conditions, including a sudden increase in milk supply (perhaps when a littermate is removed), change in feeding (i.e. , bacterial growth, slow feeding, etc.), chronic indigestion, and even genetic predispositions. Inoculation of lambs in their early stages of pregnancy is a common method of preventing type C enterotoxaemia, followed by vaccination of lambs at 7 or 8 weeks of age.
Type D enterotoxemia is very similar to type C in that it can be caused by many of the same underlying genetic conditions and predispositions. However, it is primarily predicted by overeating, which gives it its colloquial nickname of “pulpy kidney disease.” Lambs older than one month are common targets for this disease. In most cases, fast-growing lambs in the herd are affected because they already have bacteria in their intestines that proliferate as a result of a sudden change in feed. This excess bacterial growth causes a toxic reaction that is often fatal. Enterotoxemia type D vaccine is effective in preventing this condition when given to mothers during pregnancy.
It is important to administer a tetanus antitoxin at the time of cutting and castration of lambs. This is especially important if elastrator belts are used. Although temporary, this vaccine provides immediate protection against Clostridium tetanus. In contrast, tetanus toxoid vaccines offer more adequate protection, but take at least 10 days or more to be effective in the bloodstream. They also require regular booster injections to remain effective.