Wednesday, January 30, 2008
Sunday was the start of the next leg of the Wyoming Stage Stop, Wyoming's own dog sled race. We really didn't know a whole lot about what was going on, and it was really cold, but all in all, sled dogs are fun and super cute. It was actually surprising as most of the dogs used in the teams looked to be about 40-50 pounders, instead of the 75-100 pound huskies/malumutes we were picturing. One day we'll try and get Sky out skijoring, but until then, his winter activities will still be just chasing a tennis ball.
Disclaimer: This is our, very limited view on lambing. We clearly have a lot to learn, but at least have some of the best to learn from.
This is Baldwin, our indoor, bum lamb in diapers. The story really begins with our aunt, uncle and cousin who raise sheep. Now, for background, Heather comes from a cattle-ranching family, who overall believe sheep are "really dumb" and "taste yucky". However, somehow her cousin got involved with sheep during 4-H and now has a sizeable flock. So, they have quite a few pregnant ewes right now, and one had triplets. When a ewe has triplets, most often she cannot care for all three lambs and either one gets shoved out and dies, or all three are sickly.
Long ago the sheepherders figured this out and when a lamb has triplets they would quickly get rid of one. Apparently, when they were passing through town they used to "give them away to kids on the street". The other option I guess was to kill it. Either way, our aunt is waaaaayyyy too caring (and with Dr. Doolittle-like senses) and saved this little lamb, and then offered it to us.
Now, we hesitated for a bit, but really, have you ever seen a baby lamb? They are SUPER CUTE and there is really no way to say no. So, we decided to bring it home. Plus, we had talked about getting a lamb anyway, so now was as good a time as any. Now I have about a year to figure out what we'll do with all the meat.
For those curious about his care, he turns a week old tomorrow. Early on he would eat 4-6 times a day, but now he's a bit closer to 3-4 times a day. Lambs are herd animals so he needs to stay inside with his ridiculous herd of 2 people, 2 cats and a dog for a while. Pretty soon, our family will bring over a ewe to keep him company and he'll go outside in a sheep pen, and we'll wean him from the bottle to roughage. Until then, we keep him in diapers and he jumps and bucks around the house, sleeps, takes a bottle, and poops. Not much different than a child, except his sharp hooves are much fun to cuddle with. Oh yeah, and sometimes he head-butts pretty hard. Also, if you're ever looking for something to invent, lamb diapers wouldn't hurt :)
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