Today Sheila died.
She was born at Mountain Niche Farm on April 18 1999. She produced lambs there for Kim Kerley in 2001, 2002 and 2003 (Koala, Jasmine, Honeysuckle and Periwinkle). We then purchased her September 28 2003, and she moved her. We got her because of her spotted (flecket) genetics to breed to our Lewis, but it turns out she had a color modifier and produced shaela and mioget lambs too which was manifest when she was bred to Jocko. She was a somewhat wild and strong-willed sheep but very lovable in her own way.
In 2004 she lambed with Shane. In 2005 she lambed with Sasquatch and Sangria. All of these lambs were from Jocko.
In 2007, after being bred to Jocko, she produced Shauna. This beautiful lamb unfortunately died in the very neglectful situation I unintentionally sold her into. It is so sad that such a beautiful sheep had such a short and painful life that I will never live it down. She is in my blog’s header photo as a tribute.
Then in 2009 she produced (with the help of Jocko) Shirley and Shaun. Shaun ultimately grew into a gorgeous ram with both spots and a modified (and indescribable) color.
In 2010 after being unintentionally bred by Shaun she produced Timmy.
This was her last lambing as she was getting old.
I stopped shearing her in 2012 and in 2014 she became blind.
She continued to be quite thin but still got around OK and ate well. She was a companion with Sadie until she died. I had been trying to spoil her with bread, livestock feed and moistened alfalfa cubes. Last night apparently she fell and could not get up. This morning I got her to stand but she showed no interest in eating or drinking and laid down again. It was obvious that it was her time so we put her down. Sometimes it is really, really hard to be a tough but compassionate shepherd. This is one of those times.
Darn. It’s hard to put an animal down, but you know in your heart That it is the kindest thing to do for them.
Thanks! I hope we made the right decision.
I’m voting that you did. 😊. It’s an act of kindness to end an animals suffering.
I am so sorry. I know what it’s like when they retire and get old. It’s never easy to say good-bye.
Thanks Teresa! I know you know what it is like.
That is very sad, though she was very old. What breed of sheep was she?
Thanks Sarah. It is sad. She was a Shetland sheep.
Oh dear, so sad for you – I’m with Donkey Driver – I vote that you did the compassionate thing. She had such a long and full life and produced so many lovely lambs for you.
I hope her loss doesn’t dampen your Christmas – we are going to have that lovely pork roast that we got from you. I’m looking forward to it – the pork chops were certainly delicious. XOX to you both. T.
Thanks Tina! I am so glad you agree with our decision. It is always hard. I am happy to hear you are enjoying the pork. I will let you know when the rest is ready- it was delayed by flooding there. Merry Christmas!
so sorry. it’s been a tough stretch, hasn’t it? I’m sure you did the right thing. So hard to have to make those decisions. rest in peace, Sheila.
Thanks Denise. I knew it was going to be a hard winter given the age of our flock. I am hoping this is it for a while.
Never easy, no matter how indicated….
Thanks Michelle. I know you understand how hard it can be.
Shane is still doing well…Its hard when those in our care live a shorter life than we…Just know that she is now in peace…Best Wishes, eliz
Thanks Eliz. It has been rough. I could not find any pictures of Shane. Probably lost in a computer problem I had. Do you gave any photos of him you could send to me?
Oh Donna, I do empathize….and my heart goes out to you. They do try to tell us when they are ready to leave their bodies, but it is never easy. Even so, it is a blessing that we shepherds are able to ease their passing. RIP Sheila.
Thanks Lois. I hope we did right by Sheila but she seemed to be done.