Daisy the Wonder Sheep
Daisy as a lamb in 2016
Just two months ago our latest addition to the staff at Eyebright was as good as dead.
Now she's hale and hearty, though scruffy due to a third of her wool having fallen out. Daisy is a small sheep, with a remarkable multi-coloured fleece, and an extraordinary will to live. There are quitters and battlers. Daisy is a battler.
She was blessed with a great coat, but cursed with an overshot jaw. This makes her look like Mr. Burns in The Simpson's. It also makes it difficult for her to graze. That’s why she’s small.
A rambunctious ram had his way with Daisy last summer, and at the worst possible time Daisy gave birth to a lamb. It died or was dead when born. Daisy’s owner, Sue Mott, found Daisy on her side in the mud heading the same way as her lamb. Sue spared no trouble or expense bringing Daisy back. After a week it looked as if Daisy was going to be OK, but then an internal infection took hold and Daisy was once again headed towards the brink. Daisy couldn’t stand, drink or eat, and her wool started falling out.
Sue improvised a structure to hold Daisy upright. Sheep on their sides can die in a matter of hours due to gases building up in their stomachs. Twice a day Sue syringed high-energy/mineral supplement into Daisy’s mouth. Daisy did her part also. It would have been easy to just to let go, but Daisy didn’t.
Sue contacted me because she knew I was thinking of having some more interesting animals to join our ancient Gotland sheep, and there’s no chance of our three girls making Daisy pregnant. Something which must never happen again. I collected Daisy in the Eyebright van two weeks ago, but kept her out of sight because she looked so disreputable. Now she’s put on some weight and when she turns to face you, you don’t notice that areas of her wool are missing. Anyway, now you’ll understand why she looks the way she does.
Things are on the up and up for Daisy. The Gotlands have accepted her, she’s got loads of lush grass, and the shade from the big Oak tree in the centre of our round-about.
In a month, all four of our sheep, including Daisy will be shorn, giving Daisy a fresh start to her new life at Eyebright.