I get to stay home today, because there’s a winter storm headed our way that’s supposed to leave behind 5-8″ of snow. I suppose that might not seem like a lot to some people, but it will be the first big snowstorm of the year around here, so it’s a big deal to us.
I suppose the sheep could smell the snow in the air, because they really didn’t want to leave the barn this morning. Usually they’re climbing over each other to get out the door, but not today. There’s already an inch or two on the ground, and they’re not terribly enthusiastic about snow.
“Um, if it’s all the same to you, can we stay in the barn today? There’s no point going outside when everything is all snowy.”
“Especially since you put up that scary new fence, so we can’t jump out and go exploring anymore!”
Yes Lady. That is indeed a scary fence. Totally impregnable. I wouldn’t even bother trying to jump it, if I were you.
Everybody was being silly and pretending to be scared of the field gate, so I let them mill around outside and steal hay from the boys while I went back into the barn for some crunchies to lure them through the gate. All the crunchies were back at the house, so I grabbed a flake of hay instead. When I turned around they had all sneaked back into the barn and were standing in the stalls, peeking out at me innocently.
I sighed, rambled on about the benefits of fresh air, and shooed them out again. They caught sight of the hay I was carrying and followed me happily enough. I felt like the Pied Piper.
And of course, if you put half a bale of hay in the feeders, then pull a single flake off of the same bale and toss it on the ground as a
bribe distraction, guess which hay must be better? The hay on the ground, of course!
“Best. Hay. Ever!”
Even little Mira’s in there with the big kids! Ironic how they’ll fight over hay on the soggy ground but turn their noses up at a treat if my hand is dirty or wet when I offer it to them. Picky, picky.
The boys in the ram pen are the same way. Every day when I put hay in the feeder, they eat the parts they like and leave the rest behind. If I take that leftover hay out of the feeder the next morning and dump it on the ground, they get all excited like it’s brand-new hay and dive into that before moving on to the fresh hay. Sometimes I wonder if those guys are very bright. I’m sure there must be some reason that makes sense to them.
They were probably right to eat the hay on the ground first today though, because the snow’s starting to come down pretty hard out there and they might not have been able to find it later.