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Author Topic: who ever said sheep were stupid?  (Read 14228 times)

waterbuffalofarmer

  • Joined Apr 2014
  • Mid Wales
  • Owner of 61 Mediterranean water buffaloes
who ever said sheep were stupid?
« on: July 23, 2015, 04:47:02 pm »
I dosed and moved my two pet lambs to be with the rest of the flock, a few days ago. Well yesterday I looked out the window and they had appeared back in the field they grew up in, note they were three fields away, they had found holes in the fences and had navigated their way back to the field they grew up in. All I have to do is find the holes they found and stitch the holes up with wire, yet another job added to my list. Am not going to put them back with the flock though as I got quite emotional over them finding their way back to the place of their birth, that I want to keep them near to the house so I can see them every day. I know right am a bit of a softy the thing is I can't let the pet lambs go back into the flock as I love having them around so I can see them and pet them every day.  ::)
the most beautiful people we have known are those who have known defeat, known suffering, known struggle, known loss and have found their way out of the depths. These persons have an appreciation, a sensitivity and an understanding of life that fills them with compassion, gentleness, loving concern.

Rosemary

  • Joined Oct 2007
  • Barry, Angus, Scotland
    • The Accidental Smallholder
Re: who ever said sheep were stupid?
« Reply #1 on: July 23, 2015, 04:49:23 pm »
They're not stupid - they just think differently to us  ;)

SallyintNorth

  • Joined Feb 2011
  • Cornwall
  • Rarely short of an opinion but I mean well
    • Trelay Cohousing Community
Re: who ever said sheep were stupid?
« Reply #2 on: July 23, 2015, 06:28:44 pm »
They're not stupid - they just think differently to us  ;)

They think like sheep, which is sensible, as they are sheep.  It would be stupid of them to think like humans, as they are not humans.  lol
Don't listen to the money men - they know the price of everything and the value of nothing

Live in a cohousing community with small farm for our own use.  Dairy cows (rearing their own calves for beef), pigs, sheep for meat and fleece, ducks and hens for eggs, veg and fruit growing

Womble

  • Joined Mar 2009
  • Stirlingshire, Central Scotland
Re: who ever said sheep were stupid?
« Reply #3 on: July 23, 2015, 06:36:11 pm »
Yes, but then to get around that I have to think like a sheep even though I am not one.  Yet somehow this is ok?

I fear I may be going mad  ::) .
"All fungi are edible. Some fungi are only edible once." -Terry Pratchett

Hevxxx99

  • Joined Sep 2012
Re: who ever said sheep were stupid?
« Reply #4 on: July 23, 2015, 07:02:56 pm »
Our pet lambs are with the flock now, but it's still lovely when they run over bleating happily and come for cuddles.  They've been weaned ages, so it's not milk they want.  I'd never realised how very affectionate sheep are.  Even our 4 year old wethers come for scratches and cuddles. :)

SallyintNorth

  • Joined Feb 2011
  • Cornwall
  • Rarely short of an opinion but I mean well
    • Trelay Cohousing Community
Re: who ever said sheep were stupid?
« Reply #5 on: July 23, 2015, 10:36:22 pm »
Yes, but then to get around that I have to think like a sheep even though I am not one.  Yet somehow this is ok?

I fear I may be going mad  ::) .

If I want to make BH mad, I tell him, when the sheep are frustrating him by not going where he wants them, that he's got the opposable thumbs and the supposedly superior brain, so how come he can't outthink them and get them to think they want to be where he wants them to be?  :roflanim:

Don't listen to the money men - they know the price of everything and the value of nothing

Live in a cohousing community with small farm for our own use.  Dairy cows (rearing their own calves for beef), pigs, sheep for meat and fleece, ducks and hens for eggs, veg and fruit growing

Me

  • Joined Feb 2014
  • Wild West
Re: who ever said sheep were stupid?
« Reply #6 on: July 23, 2015, 10:58:11 pm »
who ever said sheep were stupid?

eeeerm... Me? Every day??

Womble

  • Joined Mar 2009
  • Stirlingshire, Central Scotland
Re: who ever said sheep were stupid?
« Reply #7 on: July 23, 2015, 10:58:57 pm »
Yes, my Dad likes to wind me up similarly - "You mean you spent all day trying to outwit a fish, but failed?"
"All fungi are edible. Some fungi are only edible once." -Terry Pratchett

devonlady

  • Joined Aug 2014
Re: who ever said sheep were stupid?
« Reply #8 on: July 23, 2015, 11:02:45 pm »
Yes, but then to get around that I have to think like a sheep even though I am not one.  Yet somehow this is ok?

I fear I may be going mad  ::) .

Womble, and I say this gently :hug: You are mad :roflanim:

Womble

  • Joined Mar 2009
  • Stirlingshire, Central Scotland
Re: who ever said sheep were stupid?
« Reply #9 on: July 23, 2015, 11:09:25 pm »
Takes one to know one DL  ;)
"All fungi are edible. Some fungi are only edible once." -Terry Pratchett

devonlady

  • Joined Aug 2014
Re: who ever said sheep were stupid?
« Reply #10 on: July 23, 2015, 11:22:34 pm »
True..true :)

Buffy the eggs layer

  • Joined Jun 2010
Re: who ever said sheep were stupid?
« Reply #11 on: July 24, 2015, 08:21:50 am »
Some of my neighbours comercial lambs were put in another neighbours field for grazing about half a mile away. They were there for a month and then someone left a gate open into another field which wasnt secure so they left. Through the new field, across a neighbours land, through the garden and down the drive, along the road, through another field and back to their home farm. It was two days before anyone even noticed.


I dont find them stupid at all, quite the reverse but the more timid breeds are more inclined to blind panic and no one is sensible when they are fleeing in terror. But then I have had years of training animals from horses to rabbits so this idea of "seek first to understand and then be understood" comes naturally. All my animals get trained as I would a dog with commands, body language, tone of voice and hand signals. I didn't really notice that I did this until OH and I both lost our voice earlier in the year and managed to get the sheep and lambs moved about and sorted out each day with a mixture of waving, clapping and pointing.


I used to think chickens were stupid as the ones I had met on livery yards seemed to be. But when I kept my own I learnt to understand them and communicate with them. I became such a convert I published a book.


I am currently seeking to understand ( and socialise ) 6 Norfolk Bronze turkey poults. They are soooo different from brooding chicks, it's fascinating!


 

devonlady

  • Joined Aug 2014
Re: who ever said sheep were stupid?
« Reply #12 on: July 24, 2015, 09:16:25 am »
I agree, sheep are certainly not stupid and have excellent memories which is why they can be turned out onto moorland and, with thousands of acres to roam in know exactly where home is. How many humans can do that?
Buffy, I would be very interested in your book, can you give me details?

Also your quote "first seek to understand and then be understood" is a life lesson to us all, I will explain it to my 11 year old grandson who has low spectrum autism and is often upset by other children's attitude to him.

Buffy the eggs layer

  • Joined Jun 2010
Re: who ever said sheep were stupid?
« Reply #13 on: July 24, 2015, 11:39:30 am »
Devon


  my book is called Talking Chickens and is available from Amazon or direct fro my publisher via the link on my blog. Seek first to understand is one of Steven Coveys 7 habits of Highly Effective people (also available from Amazon) I must confess I havent read the book but my other favorites of his recommended habits is Begin with the end in mind and think win win.


There is a Steven Covey book for teens that you may want to read with him.


But back to the theme of the thread. I find my sheep incredibly easy to train and they learn their names and simple routines and commands very quickly as lambs. They remember experiences very well so I always use food reward as part of unpleasant experiences such as vaccinations and drenching. I find that I am forgiven in seconds and the trust remains in tact.

Marches Farmer

  • Joined Dec 2012
  • Herefordshire
Re: who ever said sheep were stupid?
« Reply #14 on: July 24, 2015, 03:26:20 pm »
I am currently seeking to understand ( and socialise ) 6 Norfolk Bronze turkey poults. They are soooo different from brooding chicks, it's fascinating!
Turkeys are much calmer than chickens, far less pecking order stuff - a bit of neck twirling and hissing and it's all over in ten minutes with no blood spilled.  If you want to get their attention call like a female poult - whistle three falling notes then one ascending.  If you whistle a single long note they'll stand still (hawk alert and the stags will gobble).  Mine aren't that interested in corn so difficult to train to call.  Oh, and if you upset them when you pick them up they have a tendency to void their bowels in a projectile manner.  Grab them by holding them at the top of each wing. Like geese their wings are very strong when mature.

 

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