Thursday, April 24, 2008

Joy and sadness - all part of farming

I got home from work a little late tonight - The Shepherd was rushing around - "Listen up", he said - "Anna Dee has mastitis - and the vet can't come out - I have to take her to Lynden" (about 25 miles away) "AND , I'm pretty sure that Gwennie has gone into labor - she may have a lamb as we speak - go check on her!"

Whoa - that's a lot goin' on - so I jump out of the car, dump my purse and bags from work on the back porch and head out to the little barn where Gwennie is.

Oh, My Gosh!!!! Look what I found!

Gwennie has given us an HST ram lamb!

HST - the Holy Grail of Shetland Sheep - stands for Heads, Socks and Tail - a marking where those parts of the body are white - and he does have the white on the tip of his tail, which I guess was tucked in on these pictures. He has little Panda Eyes - His name is Marietta's "H.B." (alias, Panda Guy) (hey, you'll have to ask The Shepherd, I didn't name him...)

Man, he's cute - little panda eyes - cute, cute, cute!

So back to Anna Dee - as you can see, she has a very painful affliction here - but the boys are doing fine -

The Shepherd loaded her into our trailer and off they went to the sheep V-E-T. Our regular vet (from the same office) is back in Minnesota, but Dr. Mike did a great job and they were back in just a couple of hours.

They are both russet brown - naming is still in the works.

Of course in the mean time, the new boys thought they had been left all alone in the world, and cried and cried and cried. Which upset Regina, who couldn't quiet figure out - her boys seemed OK, who were these little twerps who were making such a ruckus?

But, unfortunately our joy was touched with sadness. Just as The Shepherd had gotten back from the vet's with Anna Dee - we thought that Gwennie was passing her afterbirth - no, there was another lamb, unfortunately stillborn - too long waiting for that first breath of life. Blossom, a beautiful white angel with a few black spots now rests beneath the cedar tree in our garden.

Joy and sadness - all part of farming...


Nancy K. said...

Congratulations on your first HST!! Wait 'till you see him running and jumping out in the pasture with the other lambs. He'll be eye-catching!

Sorry to hear about his sister, but congratulations on helping poor Anna Dee ~ that photo made ME cringe! OUCH!!!

Enjoy your babies...

Leigh said...

This is exciting! Congratulations! The pictures are adorable.

Donna said...

Yeah Gwennie! Her ram lamb I gorgeous. I'm sorry about her little ewe though. It's part of the joy and heartache of this shepherding stuff. Now let's hope for decent weather for these lambs to frolic in.

Vicki Foster said...

Congatulations on your HST! So very cute. And a great big YAY for the vet who helped poor Anna Dee - ouch!

Sorry about the loss of your wee one.

Kathy said...

Oh, Tina... I am so very sorry to hear about Gwen's twin lamb. I know how much you and John would have enjoyed having her.

But I am glad AnnaDee's mastitis was "fixed" - a problem I know that has been on The Shepherd's (and yours) mind.

Again, congratulations on the HST ram! Can't wait to hear everyone's names! :)

Paula said...

Congrats Tina & John. They are all sooo beautiful! LIfe coupled with death gives one many things to ponder and to be greatful for. Thank you for sharing.

THe crew at Dr. Keeler's :-)

Yvonne said...

Congratulations, Tina & John! What an adorable little fellow. So sorry to hear of your loss, though. Each little one is so precious.

Michelle at Boulderneigh said...

How heartbreaking to lose your only little ewe lamb! I am so, so sorry. I compulsively checked for more on the two ewes I assisted, just to make sure there wasn't a triplet, but wouldn't have gone in on a ewe who delivered the first by herself, like Gwennie did.

So how did you get that handsome HST? None of your sheep have those markings, do they?

Anonymous said...

Tina & John:

Sad and glad time for sure! Congrats on the cuties that made it through! Don't you just have the best job in the world??!! (nice flowers too!)


Robin said...

Tina--thank you for emailing me about your newest lamb and reminding me to read your blog (I tend to forget...). He is such a cutie! Will he ever know he had a twin?? I'm so sorry about her.
Hope to see more pictures of the wee ones as they grow!

Sharon said...

Rather like Ecclesiastes, isn't it. Your little HST is an abolute dear
- not deer :^)