I wrote this story in 2001. It has been been published in the Border Collie Magazines.
Ok, I'll be the first to admit that I am not sheep savvy......;-)
I did grow up on a farm but we had cattle and horses but no sheep. Lots of cats, dogs, fowl and stray snakes and spiders -much to my mom's dismay. A barn owl or two, and certainly creepy crawly things. But no sheep. None, nada, zippo!!
So, for my Border Collie Tess's birthday last year, she got a sheep farm. Well it was a farm but no sheep but they arrived in record time.
Got the sheep then unpacked the house. Priorities, you know.
If someone would have told me I would have bought a sheep farm for the dogs, I would have escorted them to the nearest loony bin. So here I am, with a sheep farm and border collies and one CITY SPOUSE.
He never touched a sheep, unless you count lamb chops. Never fixed a fence. Never went and got the flock of sheep from the cattle pasture (inside the herd of cattle-hiding), never put up hot wire, never had to bury the leftovers from a cougar kill, never had to muck stalls, but the gallant guy that he was he did all of this. And my goodness, he is the butt of many sheep jokes with his city friends.
So last night, I look out and see one of my Barbs lying down, she is about due. So I walk out and see she is prolapsed. Do I know anything about this? No, so a quick call to Robin. The Sheep book describe something but I am not too sure of what to do. Robin knows what to do. I also call Judy and she tells me the duct tape method. Thank goodness for both of them.
Robin says "Shove it in" and gives me details.
Ok, so this *thingie* is the size of a soccer ball and I am to shove it in a small hole? I tell Jeff he better quickly eat his dinner while I get the supplies. I know he will not eat his dinner if we do this first.
We go out to the barn and I tell Jeff what we have to do!! He asks if I could do it by myself or call a friend. NOPE, I answer and boy does he look "happy"
So he catches the ewe and flips her on her back. I clean it off with warm water and then pour sugar on it. Jeff looks at me like I have lost my mind and says "sugar...." I explain the purpose and he lamely says "don't drop the scoop" and I promptly did and he groaned.
I put sugar on it and try to push the blob in. Jeff turns white and wants to know how long this will take. Well, since I have never done this and Robin assured me that it would go in we would be here until it did. He wants to know if this will be a common occurrence and could we get sheep that don't have that problem? (good idea!!)
I push and he holds and *poof* it goes in. Then I pull out the duct tape and the twine harness. He gives me this funny look (one of many that night) and says "first sugar, now duct tape, God I hate to ask what's next?"
Did I forget to mention when I pushed it in, she peed all over me. I swear it was several lakes worth. Sheep revenge?
I tell him he is the chairman of the "duct tape committee" as I am holding her bottom. Wrap a circle all around her. I explain where it should and should go. He does it. Not a peep, not a word, just dead silence. Then I haul out the book that has the semi-bad drawing of the twine and Robin’s email.
"Honey (figuring I better get in his good graces), loop this over her neck and then...blah, blah."
He does this and the ewe kicks him for good measure. Near a spot that I won't mention.
We get it somewhat like the pictures and it does look like it will work so we quit. Lots of tape and twine. We get up as well as the ewe. He calls her "Duct tape my a**"
She is fine today. A dull gray tape intertwined with yellow twine. Good appetite and frisky and peeing/pooping too.
Jeff wants to know if he can have the night off tonight from sheep detail.
He goes and hides in the music studio, he has the guitar cranked. I wonder why? Perhaps so he can not hear me calling him for help? Such a smart man.