Thursday, June 12, 2008

The 10 commandments of breeding:

1) Breed toward your ideal shetland sheep. Don't be swayed by the negative voices of others. If you have done your homework, in time others will appreciate what you have accomplished.

2) Recognize that you are breeding shetland sheep and stay within your interpretation of the breed standard.

3) Never forget: No hoof, no sheep.

4) Always strive toward a sound sheep that can be of good use, plus beauty. Neither is good without the other.

5) The next generation need not be similar in phenotype to the generation before, but each generation must be consistent or an improvement in overall quality than the generation before.

6) Breed forward, look ahead. Wonderful new suprises may be awaiting you. Recognize them when they occur.

7) It is not difficult to improve the produce of a poor quality ewe in one generation. It is not even difficult to improve the produce of an average ewe in one generation. What is difficult is to improve the produce of an exceptional ewe generation after generation. That takes real skill, knowledge, gut instinct, and vision.

8) Don't be afraid to appreciate the qualities of another's flock. Breeding is a competition with yourself, not with others.

9) Don't be envious of another shepherd because they thought of something you didn't think of, discovered something you didn't, or are unencumbered by the limitations you have set for yourself.

10) Consider your sheep's attributes before you consider his/her negatives. All sheep have both. It is for you to determine how positive his/her good qualities are before you dwell on the negatives.

Wish I could remember where I saw this orginally so I could give the writer credit. I know it was from a horse site. I changed it up a little bit. :)


Kathy said...

Amen, Juliann!

Garrett808 said...

what a GREAT top ten. I'm guilty of a

Can't wait to see NEW photos of my little guy....ahem.....hint hint :)

Bill Stearman said...

Thanks Juliann. I needed to hear that ... :-)

Sabrina Wille Erickson said...


Those points are very humbling and inspiring. Thank you for modifying them for sheep and posting them.

BTW, I think your '08 lamb crop looks terrific. Love the gul/kat ram.

Cynthia and Christopher said...

But that NASSA had the courage to be so clear J. What a fine statement and courageous stand. We completely agree with your position and have always made it our own.


stephen rouse said...

Bravo Juliann! I totally agree with you. However, after saying that, I'm breaking rule #9...I covet that lamb in your top photo.....who is he/she? It's drop dead gorgeous!


Juliann said...

Hi Stephen, & all,

The photo is of a smooth polled grey gul-kat. Sire is Shelteringpines Octavian, dame is fawn katmoget Lil'Country Meadow. Meadow is by Pompey Magnus, and out of Sandcastle (Malcolm X Justalit'l Athena)
Sharp little fellow, isn't he? I don't think I've ever produced a finer lamb.

Nancy K. said...

I am SO proud of you!