A common bacterial disease of sheep especially when conditions are dusty and there are large numbers of flies.


• The first sign of pinkeye is the inflammation of the eye membranes and the production of clear watery tears that run down the cheek.

• As the pinkeye progresses the cornea (the clear eye surface) develops a blue haze that becomes more cloudy and turns white over 3-4 days.

• Shallow ulcers may develop on the cornea.

• A sheep with pinkeye cannot see out of that eye so sheep with pinkeye in both eyes are totally blind and will lose weight.

• As the eye heals the blood vessels grow into the cornea making the eye appear pink.

DIAGNOSIS: Diagnosed by examining the eye of affected sheep.


• Most cases recover without treatment in 2-3 weeks.

• Yarding sheep can make the situation worse as dust and flies can make the infection spread through the mob.

• Pinkeye antibiotic sprays and powders are readily available but a single use is generally ineffective.

• A second dose of the spray or powder should be administered 48 hours after the initial dose.

• Antibiotic ointment and antibiotic injections can also be used with positive results but must be used under veterinary advice.

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