Earlier in the fall, my girls were supposed to have a wild romantic adventure with a ram who lives nearby. But the ram doesn’t know how to drive, and his person and I were just too stupid-busy this past season to organize sheep-swaps, so it never happened. Then, just before Christmas, along comes The Little Ram That Nobody Wanted. His sisters and cousins had all gone, and his mommy had weaned him ages ago, and so all he had for company were some smelly pigs. He didn’t much like the pigs; he missed his sheep.

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He is not a black sheep. He is a white sheep who has been living too close to smelly pigs. His name is Vellum. He’s never seen a chicken before, and in fact he’d never seen Outside before, let alone snow. But having new Sheep Friends makes the whole thing a wonderful adventure.

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Chloe warmed up to him almost immediately – she’s only a few months older than he is, and she was glad to have someone new to play with.

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The older ewes took a bit longer, but eventually Blackie’s maternal instinct got the better of her, and she adopted him. Now even Freyja is warming up to him, and between the fact that he is sweet and smallish, and the fact that he is A Boy, there is a lot of cute cuddling going on in my yard this week.

It has been agreed that he can eat hay from the trough with the other sheep. (Lambs like hay. BigSheep said they didn’t, but BigSheep are always playing jokes like that. Hay is good.) In fact, (since Vellum was pretty much unsocialized) they have noticed a definite upturn in the amount of Sheep Treats on offer since he has arrived. There is nearly always something for them in my pocket now. I’m sure this helped his being accepted.

It’s taken him a bit longer to warm up to me, in no small part because he had a sore foot I’ve been treating, hooves that desperately needed trimming, and I had to take a close look at his eyes, which had been troubled by the smelly-pig ammonia. But all those problems are improving, and he has discovered that pets and scritchies don’t always mean “being turned upside down”, sometimes they mean “lamb snacks”. Just yesterday I received a very thorough sniffing, and he’s also got brave enough to try and stick his nose in the aformentioned pocket. I’m pretty sure he’ll always like Sheep better than People, but that’s fine and as it should be, Blackie’s attitude notwithstanding.

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