Wednesday, April 20, 2011
A Pasture of Their Own
Today was the big day I moved Mary Elizabeth and the lambs out of their cramped lambing jug and into the big pasture. After weighing all the options, I decided to put them in the front pen with Ruthie and the puppies, and give Judah charge over all the other north sheep on the other side of the fence.
Mary Elizabeth followed me easily into the paddock since I had a lamb under each arm. I set them down and stood back to see if my hunch about Motherly Ruth was correct. And, it was. Ruthie was absolutely wonderful with the lambs.
They were fascinated with her, and she them. Best of all, Mary Elizabeth had no qualms about Ruthie.
Of course, Ruthie's other charges were jealous of her attention, so she spent a little time with the puppies, too. Ruthie is now Nana to four white fluffy youngsters, and loves her job.
Puppies and lambs, however, don't mix, so the pups won't be out of their little pen except on a leash while the lambs are small. The lambs' arrival has totally re-arranged our puppy training schedule, but I hope to get that project back on the front burner very soon. They are plenty old enough to be learning their jobs.
Meanwhile, the lambs are hard at work being as cute as they can be, and turning me into a blubbering ninny as I stand in the pasture and just soak up their soft, warm lamby-ness.
Mary Elizabeth and Phoebe have a little girl-talk through the fence. I would put Phoebe over with Mary Elizabeth and the babies if I could figure out how to do it without letting in all the goofy boys. We're getting to where we might have to configure an all-ewe paddock. This was not in my original plan, but far be it from me to look gift sheep in the mouth.
We didn't have a party or anything, but Sunday was Ruth's one year anniversary here at the farm. Seems like only yesterday. And more than one visitor has noticed what I have also noticed lately - Ruth doesn't seem to be limping nearly as badly as she used to. Is this job helping her heal?