Footrite Gel - Rachel Godschalk

 “I noticed a marked improvement within three or four days of finishing a course of Footrite on a trial group of 20 lambs suffering from scald.  The treatment was so successful that I followed up by applying the gel to the other 20 sheep in the pen.  The second batch included a couple of animals that were severely lame due to footrot and I was surprised to find that their feet were also looking much better in the days following the final application".


That is the view of Rachel Godschalk, who farms with her partner, David Scott at the 30 acre Low Thornberry Farm near Barnard Castle in County Durham. The couple also rent a further 80 acres of grassland a few miles away from the main holding.

The sheep flock is made up of 190 Whitefaced Woodland females, of which 90 are registered under the Mortham prefix. 
Rachel, who is the secretary of the Whitefaced Woodland breed society, says the number of registered sheep has increased over the past few years.

"The Whitefaced Woodland is classed as vulnerable by the Rare Breeds Survival Trust, but it is gaining in popularity, partly because the ewes will produce a good quality lamb when put to a terminal sire", explains Rachel.

"It is the largest of the hill breeds, with females weighing around 70-80kg, but it is also is hardy enough to be kept on high ground. The meat is marbled, so it's full of flavour". 

Rachel and David, who also have a small herd of Red Poll cattle, will be looking for a market for some 250 finished lambs this year. Flock numbers have expanded rapidly since the couple took on the farm tenancy in spring 2007, and Rachel admits that buying in sheep from a number of different sources has exacerbated lameness problems.

“Before I tried Footrite I would have used an antibiotic spray, probably progressing to an antibiotic footbath if there was no visible improvement.  However, footbath treatments are time-consuming and fairly expensive.  They can also be wasteful, particularly if only a small number of animals are affected by lameness.  The footbath usually becomes dirty very quickly, which can reduce the efficiency of the product".

“Footrite is quick and easy to apply, providing a useful alternative spot treatment. I will continue to use it on my flock in the future,”
she says.


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