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Tell me about Hair Sheep - I was given a 6 week old "Ram"?

Discussion in 'Other Pets & Livestock' started by chickenzoo, Apr 9, 2009.

  1. chickenzoo

    chickenzoo Emu Hugger

    I guess that is what you call a boy lamb...right? I always wanted a hair sheep after seeing them, but never did research on them. I have a Llama, Alpaca, 2 young Fainting goats among other critters, so I know some, but what else do I need to know about these guys. [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: Apr 9, 2009
  2. FrizzleFreak

    FrizzleFreak Chillin' With My Peeps

    ram, not buck [​IMG]
    Well, they're sheep, usually used for meat. Do you know what breed of hair sheep? My only experience is with Katahdin. But anyway, just look up general sheep stuff. I raise market sheep, so I only know how to put a lot of weight on them fast, not so much pet/maintenance. Watch out for copper in feed, or minerals. We feed General Livestock, so we don't have to worry about feed, but sheep need different minerals than goats.
     
  3. username taken

    username taken Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Jan 31, 2009
    I'm guessing your ram lamb is still on the bottle?

    The first thing that springs to mind is that hair breed rams tend to be very territorial, very protective of their girls and can get aggresive if not disciplined properly.

    So the first thing I would suggest is that you decide what you want to do with this boy - whether you want to breed hair sheep (in which case I would get two or three ewes for him) or if you just want a pet, in which case I would wether him.

    You have a good basis of knowledge if you've raised market sheep, basically at this age you want to provide him with some grain along with free choice hay, you want him to be gaining weight well but dont push him as fast and as hard as a market lamb, and you really dont want him to get a layer of fat cover, either. By the time he is a year to 18 months old he shouldnt need any grain, just good quality hay.

    Its very important with boys not to feed alfalfa as it will predispose urinary calculi. Only feed cereal or pasture hay. Also, grain diets can also cause urinary calculi and the easiest way to prevent it is to feed ammonium chloride - provide free choice as a loose mineral, add into feed or use specially designed 'stone blocks'. I use the stone blocks for my boys and havent had any problems. Make sure you always watch him to make sure he is piddling freely.

    Can you post a pic of him? There are quite a few different hair and shedding breeds and if you know what type he is, or we can guess, I can give you more detailed care information. The different breeds definitely need different management techniques. For example, I have Damara sheep, which are a hair breed, they are also a fat tail breed and because of that they need to be fed and managed vastly differently to my 'conventional' wooly crossbred meat ewes and lambs or even my dorpers (shedding sheep).
     

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