Well, that didn’t take long, now did it?
The last time (just last week!) we covered our quest to raise our own dairy animals for fresh, raw milk, we had but one dwarf goat — a sweet, shy little thing who really had no chance of providing milk for us as she’s not pregnant, and has no way to become so being the lone goat here at our property. I mentioned that we were considering getting sheep to milk as either an alternative or an addition to dairy goats, if we could find some.
Through the magic of Craigslist, we came across a nice family on island who breed mixed, but mostly, hair sheep — these are a cross between the more fuzzy, fluffy-with-wool breeds and tropical hair sheep, which are generally neither fuzzy nor fluffy. Their herd had one ewe ready to go that they could tell was pregnant, and that’s what we wanted. One already bred, so that when lambing time came, she’d soon be ready to milk.
We made arrangements to pick her up at a halfway point — the parking lot at Target! The sheep deal went smoothly, and along came this curious little creature onto our homestead:
Um. Shh! I know she’s not very cute. Don’t tell her that!
She kind of looks like a weird, sheep alien from certain angles. And the sweet thing has this poor little crooked tail, bless her heart! Ah, we love her anyways.
She really needs a bath. I’ll have to attempt that this week and then put some nicer pictures of her up on Facebook.
Somehow this funny face called out to me with a name — Dorothy. Yes. Dottie the sheep. She has dots on her belly. Let’s hope she has multiple little Dotettes within that belly. (Sheep often have twins.)
Dorothy and Goatie became friends almost immediately.
Actually, they seem to have made quite the influence on each other already. While Goatie has always been relatively quiet, Dorothy likes to… um… “talk” — all. day. long. So now we hear this little chorus of:
All of the time. *Sigh.* Such is the life, eh?
And, Goatie has graciously invited Dorothy into her goat-caves, though Dorothy can’t quite fit into some of them.
Dorothy’s belly full of babe(s) is due to meet us sometime within the next few months, hopefully. We’re glad we get the chance to really let her feel comfortable with us before we start squeezing her little sheep teats for our own personal nourishment.
Until then, however, Dorothy is making herself available to the vast buffet of head-high grass which awaits her at every turn. And loving it.
Do you have experience with sheep? (We, uh, don’t. Tips for the newbies over here would be appreciated!) Would you consider one to provide dairy for your family? (We’ve never actually had sheep’s milk, either!)