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Your resource for advice from Hubbard® Life experts.


Parasite Control Makes Animals Healthier

A scheduled program for internal and external parasites is a must for your animal’s health.   Whether you have a herd of goats, a few sheep you raise for wool or a horse that you ride on the weekends, you can find information about parasite control by Googling ‘internal and external parasites in…’, then add the animal; ‘goats’, ‘dogs’, ‘horses’, etc.

For internal parasites, worms are the most common and for external parasites we are concerned with creepy crawlers like fleas, ticks and mites.  The best source of local information is your veterinarian who can make you aware of the local parasites your animal may be exposed to and can help set up a control program. Programs vary from region to region so if you are moving to a new area, contact a veterinarian in that area to start on a program specific for the new location.  

If you have not yet established a parasite control program for your animals the best time to start is NOW!  If you have a program follow it rigidly so parasite re-infestations are controlled. If you notice an unexpected weight loss, rubbing, scratching, energy loss or parasites on your animal or in their feces, contact your veterinarian and review/update the control program.  Avoid ‘home remedies’ as the remedy may cause damage to the animal’s skin or digestive track. Follow the use directions on all products and only use it for the animal it is made for.  Inspect your animals frequently for parasites.

Animals look and perform better when they are on a program to control parasites. This is especially important for young animals and those nursing babies as their nutrient needs are greater per unit of food. Parasite-free animals digest their food better which helps young animals grow faster and reduces the amount of food required for older animals to maintain proper body weight.  They are more alert and active.  Hubbard® Life offers products for a wide variety of animals.  It is formulated to optimize your animal’s nutritional needs and health. You can learn more at www.hubbardlife.com.

Posted on 5/10/2016 by Dr. Dave Whittington  |  Category: Equine, Poultry, Cat, Dog, Rabbit, Sheep, Goat, Specialty
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Life Lessons From a Dog

By Adam Stevermer, U of M Student

 

Dog: man’s best friend. For 11 years, I had a best friend. We would do chores together, play games together, and be lazy together. She was a fawn colored boxer, and her name was Tess. On Friday, after living a good life, she died. I never wanted this day to come, but after reflecting on her life, I realized that Tess taught me valuable life lessons that will stick with me through my life.

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Day 1


Love unconditionally. Love with all your heart. Tess would give us a big, slobbery kiss whenever she could. She wanted to show us how much she cared for us. In a world where there is so much hate, don’t be afraid to spread some love.

Enjoy the ride. Whenever we went for a ride in the truck, we would roll down the window and Tess would stick her head out. She didn’t care where we were going; she was living in the moment. Life is short; enjoy every moment of it.

Forgive. Even though we would scold Tess, she wouldn’t hold that against us. She loved us too much to be mad at us. Don’t hold grudges.

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Don’t judge by appearances.  When people would come to our house, they would ask if Tess would bite. She appeared to be a scary dog, when in reality, she was kind and loving. Don’t judge a book by its cover. There is so much more to a person than their appearance.

Chase chickens. Tess loved to run through a flock of chickens. When she did so, you could almost see her smiling. Do things that make you happy.

Be loyal. The best part about dogs is their steadfast loyalty. No matter what was going on in my life, I knew that Tess would be by my side. Dogs are the perfect example of the type of friend we should be.

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Find joy in small things. Tess had many toys: sticks, bones, and a red, squeaky ball. Those made her happy. Likewise, we don’t need the most expensive gadgets to be happy. Happiness can be found in the little things.

Listen before you speak. Dogs are good at listening. Humans are not. We want to be heard. You can learn so much about someone by listening to them. Try it.

Keep digging. If Tess buried a bone, she wouldn’t stop digging until she found it. Don’t give up on a goal or a dream. Keep digging.

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I am thankful that I could have a dog like Tess grow up with me. I now understand why dogs are called “man’s best friend.” They’re loyal. They’re loving. They’re forgiving. We could all learn a little bit more from dogs. 

 

Posted on 4/14/2016 by Guest Bloggers  |  Category: Dog
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Sheep are from Mars, Goats are from Venus

A question I often get is, “What are the differences between sheep and goats?”

Actually, there are quite a few differences between these small ruminant species.  There are so many differences it leads me to believe sheep are from Mars and goats are from Venus.   They are almost as different as horses are to rabbits (except for the huge size disparity).

Called small ruminants because they share similar digestive systems as cattle (four stomachs that utilize bacteria to ferment cellulose for energy), sheep and goats are much smaller in stature, but they still have differences between their natural eating behaviors.  Sheep are technically grazers, meaning they prefer chewing grass and clover low to the ground. Goats, on the other hand are known as browsers, meaning they often choose to select leaves, shrubs, vines and weeds.  They like to eat at the tops of plants, higher off the ground. They are very agile and will stand on their hind legs to reach vegetation.

This natural difference between the two animals is key when it comes to pasture management.  Sheep have an overall better resistance to pasture parasites because they have evolved eating close to the ground, putting them in close contact with roundworms, tapeworms and the like.  Goats, in contrast, developed eating off the ground over time.  With less contact with parasites in manure on the ground, goats have a less developed natural ability to resist parasitic infections.   

Sheep have a narrow tolerance for excess copper in their diet, though toxic levels depend upon the level of other minerals in their diets.  Breeds also vary in their sensitivity to copper toxicity.  For this reason, it is generally recommended that sheep not be fed grain and mineral mixes that have been formulated for other livestock (including goats), as these feeds likely have copper added to them.  Goats require more copper in their diets than sheep and are not sensitive to copper toxicity.  Their maximum level of copper is considered to be similar to cattle.  When sheep are co-mingled with goats or cattle, sheep products should be fed as a safety factor. 

Lambs (sheep) tend to grow much faster than kids (goats), no matter what the diet is.  Sheep convert feed more efficiently.  For that reason, grain-feeding is less likely to be profitable in goat meat production.  Sheep and goats often “fatten” very differently.  Goats will deposit fat around their internal organs before depositing external fat over their back, ribs and loin.  Sheep deposit external fat before depositing the internal fat.

Another notable difference is the general behavior.  Goats are naturally curious and independent.  Sheep have a natural flocking instinct and will prefer to stay together and follow each other.  It is easier to keep sheep inside a fence, while goats will look for creative ways to get out.  Goats will look for shelter from a storm while sheep don’t mind weathering a storm in a tight group in open terrain.

And finally, appearance differences abound.  Goats have hair (not wool).  Most sheep have a thick coat of wool covering their bodies that needs to be sheared off repeatedly during their lifetime.  Goat tails will stand up while sheep tails go down.  Most sheep tails are docked at birth for health and sanitary reasons.  Many breeds of sheep are polled (meaning they have no horns).  Those sheep who do have horns often have thick, tightly curved horns at the sides of their heads.  In contrast, goats have horns in most cases.  And the horns tend to be narrow, upright, less curved, and come to a sharper point.

A final bit of trivia: Which female has a longer gestation (pregnancy)?

The doe (goat) has a 150 day gestation and the ewe will range from 145-147 days.

I hope this information has been interesting and maybe even helpful.  To learn more about high quality feed products available for sheep and goats visit www.HubbardLife.com

Posted on 3/30/2016 by Amy Brown  |  Category: Sheep, Goat
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