Vitamin B12

Lamb growth can be limited by B12 deficiency. B12 deficiency is seen more commonly in lambs than older sheep. Supplementing vitamin B12 is more important in a wet season when there is fast grass growth. New Zealand's volcanic soils in particular can be very low in cobalt, and with cobalt being essential for B12 manufacure in the rumen, the large tracts of pine forest in the central plateau are testimony to the futility of farming sheep on such cobalt deficient soils.

'Bush sickness' is now largely a thing of the past since it was discovered that the primary problem was cobalt deficiency.

While the Wairarapa soils are not volcanic, they have a marginal cobalt status like much of New Zealand, and it is not unusual to see significant reponses to Cobalt applied on the fertiliser/water or B12 in the animal.

There are short and longacting B12 products available through our clinics, call in and discuss your needs with one of our vets.