Lovey and Friends
The Story of Lovey the Lamb
by Penny Weston
March 13, 2010 was a cold windy day and while traveling home from the Las Vegas airport, I stopped to give one of my Ridgeback girls a chance to stretch their legs. We parked near a truck stop where three stock trucks were checking their load of sheep. As I spoke to one of the drivers, another driver came toward us with a blanket wrapped around a new born lamb, still covered in afterbirth. He explained the lamb had just been born and had to be removed from the truck to keep it from being trampled. They had no way of finding her mother. He asked me if I would like to have a lamb and there was no way I was going to let that little girl die. I put her in the dog crate and traveled another two hours to the closest feed store for colostrum. Mariah (my Ridgeback) was a little surprised but gladly surrendered her bed. When we arrived home, the lamb, now known as Lovey, was given her very own dog crate in the living room. She had to be fed around the clock every four hours.
For the first week we were not sure she would make it. Apparently many baby lambs die rather easily. Lovey had lots of people rooting and praying for her. She wore diapers and wandered freely around the house.
As Lovey gained weight and strength, she would join the dogs each night for their carrot treats and their banana in the morning. But her very, very favorite is dog cookies. She will do anything for one! She even learned to “kennel up” with a dog cookie. At night, just before bed, when the crew takes their potty break, Lovey would zip outside and continue her trimming of my row of Lady Banks roses. She normally comes when her name is called, except when eating my roses. However, the “cookie” word gets her to come on the run.
Lovey's first day outside
She wants always to be in eyeshot of me or one of the Ridgebacks, which made the inevitable a tough decision. It came when she turned two and half months old and about 40 pounds, mainly because it became increasingly difficult to find big enough diapers to fit her. So the decision was made to find a friend for Lovey who could live with her in the barn. We located a little Lamancha goat just two days younger and named her “Lilly”.
"Lovey really believes I am her mother
and that she is a fuzzy white ridgeback."
The eight Ridgebacks were her constant companions. Her favorite place was snuggling next to one of them on their dog bed. As she would drink her bottle they would hover around and wash her face (somehow I really believe it was more about getting their share of milk than cleanliness)!
That first night out in the barn I think was harder on me than it was on Lovey. The house seems a tad empty without her, but we get fun time with her during the day. I still get my kiss every morning when I open her stall door. She comes running and loves her rubs. The dogs and Lovey romp and play in the horse pasture. You think Ridgebacks are fast; you should see a lamb run!
Lovey has taught Lilly all about the cookies and dog beds, too. The other day I looked at the golf cart and there was Lovey, in the front seat, and Lilly was sitting in the back. It reminded me of “Driving Miss Daisy”!
So, when you see me at the Nationals and I have a little white curly hair on my suit, just know that we are now working on the standard to include 'White Fuzzy Ridgebacks'!
Mariah and Lovey the Lamb first day home March 13, 2010
6-month old Ali and 5-day old Lovey
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