Torrential rainfall in many parts of the country and a rapid deterioration in ground conditions is encouraging farmers who would normally finish lambs indoors to house sheep. The performance of lambs will be strongly influenced by health issues linked directly to disease and the environment and manner in which they are handled.

Looking at direct health concerns, lameness is an issue that needs to be addressed before animals are housed. If left unchecked, it can lead to outbreaks in housed sheep. Lambs showing any signs of lameness should be grouped together, and either treated outdoors and and delayed from housing, or housed in a separate batch where an intensive treatment programme can be administered.