Fall is here and we have put the sheep in a sacrifice area. We are introducing the dog to the sheep and that seems to be progressing well. And it’s mating season. I was hoping that would start a bit earlier, but we will deal with what we get.
Instead of letting the sheep overgraze the entire pasture, we have confined the sheep to a small area and are letting that get all muddy and nasty while it preserves the rest of the pasture. We may let them out for some dry periods, but for now, we are keeping them contained.
With the sheep contained fairly tightly, it provides a reasonable opportunity to put the dog in there so they can make friends. It is progressing, but slowly. In the beginning the sheep would run from the sheep. In the confined area, the dog doesn’t really chase them, but she follows and the sheep huddle tightly in a corner to protect themselves. Today, I saw the most skittish sheep nose to nose with the dog. The dog wanted to play and would sort of nibble on the sheep’s ears. I don’t think that’s good, but the sheep never ran away so we will call it a success.
Just to add to the excitement around here, the ewes are in heat again and RAM and the ram lamb, Zap, that was born last spring are excited to make babies. We started with just one ram with the ewes, but nothing happened for several weeks, so we put all the sheep together. Now the rams spend the day ramming each other and trying to impress the ladies.
Now try to imagine what I’ve just explained to you to get a visual of what our farm is like now. All the animals are in a confined space with a dog following around and playing with sheep that don’t want to be played with. At the same time, I have two rams that are trying to mount the ewes. About the time that a ram gets the space to mount a ewe, the other ram will ram him or the dog will play with the ewe and she’ll move away. Then the whole process starts over. They are a bunch of animals cornered by a dog, wriggling around trying to get in a different positions while two rams periodically put the moves on the ladies and try to mount them. It reminds me of a mosh pit. We will call it the mosh pit of love.