You're a Good Lamb, Stu...

 Me and Stu!
Gardener and Pet Lamb

My pet lamb Stu (oops - he sounds like a casserole) lives in the ram paddock above the pond. Stu is an easy-care, chubby merino lamb - he drinks his bottle, eats grass, and snoozes in my old fashioned rose garden underneath the Omar Khayyam rose. Unfortunately rather a lot of the rose leaves have been nipped off - aha! A lamb with good taste...

Early Lamb Days

Stu is a proper pet lamb now, but this wasn't always the case. His sister (Milly) sadly didn't make it past three weeks. And then Stu got a bit sick himself.

My confidence plummeted - I'd always thought lambs were easy to rear. So I kept quiet in the Moosey Journal, while Stu went to the local country vet in the lamb-sized Moosey sewing machine box. There was nothing obviously wrong, and finally after several anxious days he improved.

 This is where he sleeps.
Stu the Lamb

Lambs Are Fun

It took one whole week, but then he was back - drinking all his bottle, putting on weight, full of proper lamb-energy. So I started talking about him again - lambs are such fun when things are going well.

A Gardening Lamb

I like to lift him out of his paddock to come gardening and run around with Rusty the dog. Also it's good to see him eating fresh grass - when he was younger he preferred grass clippings and hay.

Now Stu is always busy, head down, nibbling grass. Regretfully he's been banished from gardening, since he eats inappropriate things like rose foliage, fern fronds, and cherry blossom. He's coming up for nine weeks old, and I'm gradually weaning him off his lamb milk.

Stu has grown up into a really nice pet lamb - not too pushy, and not too dependant. Friends and family all like him (well, they say they do, whenever I put on my adoring sheepy-mother act). He's a pure-bred merino lamb, reared for his fine fleece, so there'll be no home-grown lamb stews or roasts this Christmas! Phew!

 Dear lamb!
Stu the Pet Merino Lamb

I guess that my Omar Khayyam rose might not flower very much this summer. On well - a gardener silly enough to plants roses on the edge of a sheep paddock gets what she deserves...

 Stu the lamb underneath the Crab-Apple tree.
Head Gardener, Pet Lamb, and Blossom Tree

I don't really mind. I'll wait until next year, when Stu is out the back with the other merinos. For now he has compulsory socialisation every afternoon - I shut the ewes with their paddock lambs into his paddock. At dusk there is much running, bouncing and chasing, before the fence is opened again.

 Two ewes and two other merino lambs.
Stu Lamb's Flock

Update - November 11th 2010

Aha! Success! Stu lamb is now a member of the flock, and though he still has a couple of small bottles of milk each day he really doesn't need any. He is fat - very fat.

 He's ten weeks old in this photograph.
Stu the Big Merino Lamb

One tiny problem - his horns have started to grow (and strictly speaking they shouldn't have). It will be interesting to see where this ends - proper merino rams have wonderful curly horns. Stu is not supposed to be a ram. Oops...

Update - January 2011

I am sorry to say that Stu lamb died at four months from a mystery illness, which was mercifully very quick acting. He's the first lamb to be buried in my Official Memorial Pet Row.