Attention sheep farmers: sheep dipping advice update!

Date published: 17 February 2023


DAERA would like to remind flock keepers about the responsible use of products licensed for the treatment of sheep scab.


Please ‘dip don’t shower’ your sheep when treating for sheep scab. There are worrying signs of a new trend whereby organophosphate sheep dip formulations, used to treat sheep scab, are being incorrectly used in sheep showers. Products licensed to treat sheep scab are only to be used as dips.

It is an offence to use a product licensed only for dipping in a sheep shower system.

There are currently two treatment methods available to kill the mites that cause sheep scab:

• injectable formulations based on ivermectin-type drugs and

• organophosphate sheep dips.

Recently, there have been reports that resistance to the injectable formulations is developing.

This means that on some farms, the only effective method of treatment available is the organophosphate sheep dips. These are very powerful formulations and to date no resistance to the active ingredient has been identified. Preserving their effective use is therefore of the utmost importance.

DAERA is therefore encouraging flock keepers to check the products they, and contractors working for them, are using to treat their sheep. If the product is only licensed for use as a dip, do not use that product in a sheep shower system.

Notes to editors: 

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