Lamb Care Australia relies on its network of Foster Carers who care for lambs during the first 10 – 12 weeks of their life until weaned. Without these volunteers we could not operate a successful organisation. If you are interested in fostering the following are some commonly asked questions.
I would like to foster but have no experience
Lack of experience is not necessarily a problem. You will be given detailed instructions on how to care for your lambs and a buddy system will be in place. Your buddy will be someone you can contact for advice. You will also receive a detailed care guide prior to delivery of your lambs.
What should I expect when fostering?
Lambs are fostered in pairs. You will quite likely foster 2 newborns who will for the first few days require 2-3 hourly feeds which will then extend to 4 hours, 5 hours and after the 2nd week will settle to 4 x 6 hourly feeds. At about 8 – 10 weeks weaning will commence over a period of about 4 weeks. Vaccination occurs at about 6 weeks of age as does castration for males. Castration will be performed under light sedation by a vet. We make every attempt to give you healthy lambs (those with health problems will spend time with one of our experienced carers prior to fostering) but sometimes health issues may still arise. Vet visits may be a necessity in some of those situations.
What type of support can I expect?
You will provide support from experienced carers by phone or facebook messenger. Anytime there is a concern you will be encouraged to contact your “buddy”.
What do I need?
You will need a secure outdoor area for your lambs. This does not need to be a large area – just somewhere for them to spend some time outdoors. You will also need an indoor area where your lambs will spend a lot of their time especially when they first arrive. Lambs, as they get older, enjoy chewing on whatever they can find so keep this in mind when deciding if your house is suitable. Other items such as nappies, scales, thermometer, towels etc will be outlined in a care guide you will receive in preparation for delivery of your lambs.
What costs are involved?
The 2 most costly items are nappies and milk powder. Milk powder costs approximately $45 per bag and you will need at least 2 bags over the time you are feeding you lambs. Other costs involve vaccination at 6 and 12 weeks and castration for males. Castration, depending on where it is performed, is usually about $150.
During the 1st week of fostering or adopting Lamb Care Australia will pay any vet bills. From the 2nd week on we will take it on a case by case basis.
Foster Application form:
If you think you would be a suitable foster carer for Lamb Care Australia please complete the following foster application form: