Trip to a Sheep Farm

Jan
15

Sheep farm in Calhoun County.

Those are the rams on the left, outside the barnyard. Inside are the ewes, and oh yes, little lambs.


This farm belongs to my friends Kathy and Mike. The Princess and I were there to see their new lambs. They’re lambing this month. Hopefully, if we’re lucky and they have enough lambs to spare, we’ll take a couple home in a few months for ourselves to start our own sheep!

Their sheep are Suffolk-Dorset crosses. Suffolk are the sheep with the black faces and legs. The Dorsets are the white sheep.

Notice the ewe on the left, a strong Suffolk, and the ewe on the right, a Dorset. The ewes in the middle have more of the cross-breeding. Suffolks are bred for meat. Dorset are bred for both meat and wool. I’m interested in the Dorsets. Crosses aren’t purebred or registered, but I’m not worried about that. I’m not going into the breeding business. I’m not sure I’m going into the wool business, but I would like to have sheep that are good for wool. And I like white sheep.

And, well, who wouldn’t love this?

Does this thing not look like a stuffed animal???

Here is Kathy with the little three-day-old toy.

Did you notice the LEGS??? Could they be longer?

Baby was, pretty quickly, begging for her mama, as much as mama was begging for her baby girl. See mama poking her head through the gate in the barn? Do you see the baby’s tail? Not yet docked. Did you know sheep have tails like that?

And there are more little lambs to see!

Here is a primarily Dorset lamb. A big boy!

And a largely Suffolk little girl.

The two of them make a cute pair.

Sharing the salt lick….

…and telling secrets.

Till the Princess grabs hold of one.

Outside the barnyard, the rams watch jealously, wishing they could come in and kiss the girls.

While the ewes say…..

…”I am so sorry. I’m going to watch Idol tonight and wash my wool. You’ll have to find something else to do.”

At the sheep farm, they also have chickens (and guineas).

And a chicken house.

A barn you can crawl under.

A big rock to climb on top.

And a tire swing.

Princess: “I want to live here!”

Well, maybe not. But maybe………

Just maybe……….

If the mamas cooperate………

We can take a little of the sheep farm home with us!

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Posted by Suzanne McMinn on January 15, 2009  

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Comments

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  1. 1-15
    4:29
    am

    That first little lamb was smiling at y’all! I hope he gets to go home with you.

  2. 1-15
    4:55
    am

    Ok, I think it’s entirely possible I just fell a little bit in love with them there sheep. How cute are they?!

    Beautiful place. I think I’d be quite content to live there.

  3. 1-15
    5:52
    am

    Love this post!
    I want a sheep or two myself. Maybe someday.

  4. 1-15
    6:34
    am

    You are really making me want to add sheep to the list of things going on my farm. I just want to snuggle up to those little lambs right now. How adorable. :sheep:

  5. 1-15
    6:39
    am

    Ooooooohhhh, aren’t they sooooooo cuuuuuuuuute? I think you need both breeds, but definately the Dorsets — that would be an awesome learning experience to go through the wool process. All the way to the point of Princess wearing a new hat! But that would just make us that more jealous of everyone here on the Chickens that really do live on a farm! LOL!

    Will you be breeding to grow your own flock? Then, will Clover be the shepard? Or Coco? He doesn’t really look like a sheep dog, but he would probably have fun with it!

  6. 1-15
    6:49
    am

    Wow – water!!! Who knew!!! Died and gone to heaven??

    I know they have fur – but arent the goats and sheep cold??? not to mention the chickens?? it is in the low 30s here in the dallas area and there are ducks on the lake by my house – arent they cold? My dog even wears a coat in this weather!!
    You can tell I know nothing, nothing about the farm and the animals. I am sure I would have clover in a coat by now!!!!
    Yes the sheep look like a stuffed animal for sure!! I’ll take one please. It will fit just nice on my bed – hmmmm

  7. 1-15
    7:29
    am

    Wonderful pictures of the sheep and the farm itself. We have Icelandic sheep on our farm and just love them. Lambing will be in late April and early May. Such a fun time! :sheepjump: We also have one Suffolk-Dorset-Rambouillet cross sheep. She’s a sweet girl and very friendly. I can’t wait to see the lambs you take home!

  8. 1-15
    7:32
    am

    I love farm babies period! Doesn’t matter what type of critter (goats, rabbits, chicks, cows, horses, dogs)! Can’t wait to read the adventures at Stringtown Rising Farm this spring.

    Coco will think “new playmates” with the arrival of little lambs.
    Clover and Spartacus will have their nose and beak out of joint.
    Clover especially…the true diva!

    New skills to learn learn for you. I can’t wait for the sheep shearing. Milking a goat, HA!, that’s nothing. Sheep shearing? We are in for a wonderful journey!

  9. 1-15
    7:51
    am

    Are you going to start spinning and weaving too??? :sheep:

    As always, great pictures. Thanks for sharing, and thanks to Kathy & Mike too! :sheepjump:

    WAAAAHOOOOO for the water!!!! :snoopy:

  10. 1-15
    7:58
    am

    When do they dock the tails? Sheep are something I never considered. I am considering them now……. Hey can’t you milk them too? :hole:
    I miss my “weeeee”

  11. 1-15
    8:17
    am

    Aw, I bought a little lamb once from a 4H girl that was very glad he wasn’t going to be eaten. I named him Murdock, walked him on a leash like a dog, and he visited the children’s daycare where I worked. The daycare would also raise an orphan lamb every year, we’d put a diaper on them with a little hole cut out for the tail, and they’d sproing around with the children. They were adorable.

  12. 1-15
    8:18
    am

    Uh oh…competition for Clover in the “cuteness” department!

  13. 1-15
    8:18
    am

    Oh, you should grab a handful of guineas. They are characters. My two are better watch dogs than the dogs.

  14. 1-15
    8:31
    am

    Do an online search and check out the Southdown Babydoll sheep. Honestly, your heart will break with their cuteness.

    – Suzanne, the Farmer’s Wife

  15. 1-15
    8:42
    am

    Growing up on a 575 acre farm in Pendleton County, we had about a 100 head of sheep. Every spring we’d get together and band the lamb and dock their tails. I remember we had a border collie pup that nipped at the sheep, and we feared he may become a sheep killer as he grew up, so during the banding of the lambs when several sheep were in the corral, Dad threw our puppy into the pen with the lambs and ewe’s. Well, those Ewe’s took after Pete, our puppy, and butted him around and kicked him. Pete was yelping for his life. After a few minutes, Dad went in the pen and rescued Pete, and you know, after that Pete never nipped at the lambs and he was a really good sheep dog. Those Ewe’s gained Pete’s respect that day and he always was real careful and watchful around them arfter that. I remember we’d tell him to go round up the sheep and he’d run all the way up on the mountain and bring all the sheep down to the pen for us. He was a good dog, and sheep were fun, albeit somewhat dumb, to have around. I remember we always had lambs inside every winter. Sometimes the ewe’s won’t claim their lambs after giving birth to them. Oh, and you won’t even come close to breaking even on wool these days. If you get sheep, get them to have them. Last year, my parents only got $7.00 per hundred pounds of wool! That doesn’t even cover the cost of feed.
    They are fun though. Oh, and get some guineas if you have sheep, guineas will keep the ticks at bay which seem to be attracted to sheep. Pearl guineas are my favorite.

    Matthew

  16. 1-15
    9:09
    am

    Oh, get the sheep. I’ll teach you to spin! It will be fun! (those little ones are so cute!!)

  17. 1-15
    9:09
    am

    I saw this video on the internet on a D.I.Y. site, where this woman was making purses pout of Persian cat hair! She would wash and blow dry the cats, shave them, comb the hair wool style and then spin it into yarn on a friend’s spinning wheel. She was selling some of the purses in amounts of SEVERAL hundred dollars!

  18. 1-15
    9:09
    am

    YES, you have water again! Every time I did dishes or flushed the toilet the last few days I would think of you and feel grateful that we had water. Even been doing dishes and laundry as we dirty things rather than let stuff build up. It feels like a luxury when I think about what it would be like without water. Been there, done that in the past, never want to go there again.

    So glad it all worked out without spending a ton of money.

    Can’t wait for the adventures of the sheep farmer. Looking forward to spring and your daily posts then. I think you should milk sheep too!

    Sheila

  19. 1-15
    9:12
    am

    The sheep are beautiful! I’ve never been around one other than petting zoos and one wild night in Wales – about 35 yrs ago. I was camping around England and Wales with a pen pal and we set up the tent in farming territory. Private land that catered to hikers, complete with a wonderful building containing toilets and a huge shower for each gender! In the middle of the night I needed to head for the bathroom (and no wooden outhouse, either – it even had a marble vanity!) and suddenly bumped into something that baaaaaaaad at me. Scared the … er…daylights out of me!

    Love the pictures, love Princess, and I really like the picture of Clover and the kids at the Birdseed Cafe.

    And did I read that you have water again? Hooray!! :sheep:

  20. 1-15
    9:13
    am

    No Fair, now you have me singing “Little Lamb” from Gypsy. It’s the song no one remembers. Louise sings it to a lamb she received for her birthday, but she doesn’t know how old she is since her mother has faked all their ages to keep them younger!

  21. 1-15
    9:17
    am

    Your pictures of the little lambs just stole my heart :heart: . Seriously in love….but don’t tell Coco!

  22. 1-15
    9:24
    am

    Those little lambs are precious!

    Gizmo asked if you were going to get into spinning and weaving–even if wool doesn’t bring in the $$$, maybe you could spin and then create wool mittens and scarves.

    Country life has it all, huh? Even water sometimes!!

    Kris7
    Working hard at http://www.sccworlds.com

  23. 1-15
    9:27
    am

    I don’t even know how to knit yet, though I would like to learn to knit and spin. If I get into wool, it won’t be for selling, I don’t think. It would be for personal use. And fun!

  24. 1-15
    9:29
    am

    Thinking sheep now? You realize you’re going down a dark path… But that might just be my aversion to wool talking. Sheep cheese is awfully tasty, though.

    Mairzy doats and dozy doats and liddle lamzy divey…

  25. 1-15
    9:41
    am

    :sheep: Great post Suzanne! And lovely pictures to match. Wonder what Clover will think of ewe sharing her lot? her COOKIES??? LOL

  26. 1-15
    11:01
    am

    The baby sheep are so adorable!!! Your pictures are great! And I’ve got my fingers crossed that you get some babies, can’t wait.

  27. 1-15
    11:47
    am

    Oh I am so so jealous that I live in an apartment in a city. I want to go see the lambs. They are adorbable!

  28. 1-15
    2:41
    pm

    How PRECIOUS…Morgen AND the sheep!! Ohhh, I want a little sheep! Cutest little things!

    I have missed seeing your blog…we just got our computer back, from being worked on!

  29. 1-15
    3:14
    pm

    They are all so cute! :sheep: Morgan does look right at home.

  30. 1-15
    3:30
    pm

    Awww, they’re so cute! Even my six year old son says so. *G* YAY! On the return of water!

  31. 1-15
    8:29
    pm

    Those eyes. That little smile. Those legs. The fluffiness. Adorable!!! So sweet and adorable!

  32. 1-15
    8:44
    pm

    I’m sure you can teach yourself to knit – I did it years ago although I forget now. And to crochet too. How neat to have your own wool. The baby lambs are so cute. All babies are. I brought in a kitten this weekend but it was sick with pneumonia and even a trip to the vet didn’t help – I’m so sad.

  33. 1-16
    12:47
    am

    I learned so much from this post! I did not know some sheep were bred for wool, and others for meat. I also did not know they docked their tails. Is this for all breeds?
    But I do know that little white lamb has to be the cutest thing I’ve ever seen! Really does look like a stuffed animal! ;)

  34. 1-16
    4:10
    am

    :purpleflower: Suzanne sure got some great pictures of your barn and sheep. I love the lamb youre holding, so cute!! Princess has become a little country girl has’nt she!Sounds like they’re anxious to get their little lamb.

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