PREGNANT women should steer clear of sheep during lambing periods, the Department of Health has warned. It says that women in contact with ewes may become infected with Chlamydia Psittaci, the most common cause of spontaneous abortion in sheep, which can also cause miscarriages in humans. Pregnant women are advised not to help with lambing or milking ewes, to avoid contact with aborted or newborn lambs and afterbirth, and to seek medical help if they experience flu-like symptoms after they have been in contact with sheep.