Animal Farm Questions and Answers
by George Orwell

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Sheep Pica! Please Help! Sheep Eating Wool! I have a flock of sheep, mostly Merinos, nearly all of which have begun eating their own wool and that of the other flock members. Only the Merinos are doind this. Which nutrient might they be looking for? If not a missing nutrient, what might be the cause? What can I do to stop this? -Sarah

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litteacher8 eNotes educator | Certified Educator

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Sometimes it's behavioral. I don't know if one sheep would eat its wool because another did, but that's possible too. The sheep might be stressed or upset about something. You can calm them down by making sure they have shelter and there are not external stressors.

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lrwilliams eNotes educator | Certified Educator

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write1,136 answers

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The only information I have been able to find suggests a possible lack of Zinc, Iron and Copper in the diets of the sheep. I would suggest you visit with your local vet or contact your local University Extension Center for more information.

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gatherer0 | Student

Also, copper is actually highly toxic to sheep. When shopping for a salt and nutrient block for sheep and goats, be careful to avoid blocks with copper.

gatherer0 | Student

Thank you for the suggestion!

We certainly will call our vet and possibly Tufts Large Animal.

The sheep don't seem to be missing any vitamins, and have plenty of enrichment toys and attention.


I was just wondering if anyone else had this experience with their flock.