Weekend of Sheep

As odd as it sounds coming from someone who raises sheep, I enjoyed a very sheep full weekend.

Saturday afternoon, with the help of Cajun and Fynn,  I brought the flock home from pasture. One thing about long, tough winters is that the weaker members your flock show up, making it a good time to do a second cull. We have a dozen or so ewes that are struggling. I was undecided on keeping them and giving them extra care or culling them asap, but either way I needed to sort them out from the group.

Since I needed to take a look at the girls and find the ones that were struggling, I put all the sheep into the building, then moved smaller groups of them at a time into a smaller pen where I could walk through and catch by hand and sort into a side pen. I’m working on my own as Allen is unable to help right now so this worked pretty good for me. 

By the end of the afternoon I had them sorted out and felt pretty good about myself. The culls were in a pen and all the other ewes were now spread out in the adjacent paddock. I took Gibson out to gather and start the flock moving back out to pasture. He handled the job very well and I was very pleased (working the whole flock is a lot of sheep for this young dog).

There ended up being 18 cull ewes and by supper time I decided I was going to treat them. I’ll hang onto them until their health turns around and then sell them as culls, or keep them for stock dog training if I think they’re up to it.

After supper I headed back out to the building and did the treating (16 of the 18 just needed a dose of wormer I believe, two others some antibiotic for an abscess). They’ll stay with the ewe lamb group for now and I’ll bring them in again in 10-14 days.

Today a few friends came out to do some sheep handling and join me in working dogs. This time I put the whole group of ewe lambs in the building and we started out doing some sheep handling and sorting without dogs. Then we moved into some dog work. I worked my little BJ and it felt like I was just going in circles with her and not teaching her much. She does not like motion to cease and I’m having trouble getting her to understand stop. I’d like to get a stop without creating an issue, but I think I’ve already created one. That point aside, I had a great time working with her, I always do. I like this little girl.

After working dogs we wrapped up the afternoon with a small potluck supper and a visit. It was a great time and a successful weekend all around.

Comments

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