Wednesday, June 8, 2011

Fuzzy Wuzzy Wasn't Fuzzy, Was He?

Finally, it's sheep shearing day! The drippy little fuzzlumps finally dried out, I had the day off, and the shearer was available. The stars and planets lined up, and the sheepies got a haircut.

Of course, in order to shear a sheep, first you have to catch one...



That's Madman on the left, the shearer on the right, and the panicky sheep all over the place.

Closing in...



Gotcha!

Goldie was first. If you'll remember from last year, she's so skittish that we have to make sure she's done before anyone figures out what's going on, otherwise we'd never be able to catch her.

Here's Madman, consoling Merlin. He was very worried about what that man was doing to Goldie. (Onyx is hiding under their sunshade. She didn't even want to look...)


One down. Now to catch another.
Another merry chase. We kept trying to convince Goldie that she didn't have to run anymore, but she wasn't buying it. If there's sheep-chasing going on, she's all over it.

Finally, Onyx was snagged. Look close at the picture - yes, that is his thumb in her mouth. There's a gap between a sheep's incisors and molars that is the perfect width for a thumb, and keeping a gentle hold on the lower jaw goes a long way toward persuading a sheep that we want to go this way.

And off comes that heavy hot wool.



Freedom!

Merlin checks out the girls' new hairdos.

No pictures for the last chase. Madman had to head for work, so I was the assistant chaser. No way I could take pictures while jumping, shifting, feinting, and driving.
We finally nabbed him. Well, the shearer nabbed him. I just urged Merlin in his general direction.
First the mani-pedi. (All the sheep got one. I just neglected to get pictures.)

Look how light the fleece is next to his skin, as opposed to the part exposed to the outside world...


And look! Three naked sheep!

Just in the nick of time, too. The temperature today shot up to 90. Such a delight to have shucked off those heavy wool sweaters!

They spent the rest of the day trying to stay out of the sun, and looking vaguely embarrassed.

11 comments:

Wanderingcatstudio said...

I bet they feel so much better afterward - if only they remember it next shearing season!

Becky said...

The fleeces look gorgeous! And the sheep look much more comfortable. Will you post some up-close pics of the fleeces?

cathysue said...

very funny! they must feel so much better. wish i still had some sheep. I had two when i was little their names were cagney and lacey if that tells ya anything about when that was. :)

beckyinvt said...

if only there was some way to tell them that you're trying to HELP them...

Bullwinkle said...

For all the running and chasing and drama, the sheep looks awfully relaxed during the actual make-over.

uhm, how much do your sheeps weigh? There was that pic of the shearer basically holding Goldie with one arm... curious minds want to know.

Cookie said...

Job well done! Congratulations to all the combatants for surviving another Fleece Day! ;^)

xo

Joansie said...

I'm exhausted for you but it does sound like a very fun and rewarding day.

cooterhollow said...

Funny, I spent most of my twenties living for the day I'd be chased around and held by strong arms. Though I can't extend the metaphor to the shears....

(They do look like they can breathe again)

kmkat said...

Thanks for the picture essay. The whole chase thing looks exhausting to this old lady. Big brave sheep!

Angie said...

Looks pretty exciting to me, several weeks later. :D Pretty chocolate and vanilla fleeces.

jessie said...

Quite a dramatic event, isn't it? I confess, at our house we have one sheep. So my stepson's girlfriend puts her 4-H experience to work and shears the sheep with hand clippers. She does a nice job, too, although it's not quick.

The goats don't recognize Sophie after the shearing so she gets pushed around for a day or so.