The only way I can explain why Merricat left the hay and the other sheep and followed me into the barn yesterday is that she learns quickly and remembers.
On Saturday afternoon she and her mother Lori came into the pole barn when I was mucking the manure. When I opened the door to the inner part of the barn both followed me in. I gently got Lori to leave, closed the door and gave Merricat some grain.
Lori made a little noise and hung around at first, but then went back to the feeder with the other sheep.
I didn’t expect Merricat to remember from this one experience, but she did.
I was wondering this morning how I could separate Merricat from the other sheep to grain her, but she made it easy. While the other sheep were eating she just followed me into the barn.
Jon wrote today that it has a lot to do with my intentions and that the sheep trust me. But I’ve only had the lambs and Lori a couple of weeks. I’m surprised they trust me already.
I have learned that the calmer I am and the easier I am around the sheep the more responsive they are.
After Merricat finished the grain, I let her out and she hung around me, expecting more to eat. Wanting her to eat with the rest of the sheep and not wanting her to get too attached to me, I left the barnyard, figuring that she’d join the rest of the sheep if I was gone.
And she did. As I look over the fence from a distance she was at her small pile of hay on the ground eating with Asher.
I think this is going to work.