A dedicated farm manager has hand-raised a lamb in his own home after it was born “too weak to feed.”
Somali lamb Coco has been living in the home of Hillview Animal Park farm manager Craig Holmes, 35, for a fortnight now after being born too weak to feed from her mom on her own.
Staff became concerned after the lamb appeared to be unable to stand up and feed, and so they made the decision to temporarily remove Coco from the flock, instead hand-rearing her in Craig’s home.
Her first few days were “touch and go,” at the Clackmannanshire farm, but Craig kept her warm by the fire and stuck to a schedule of six feeds per day for the little lamb.
Over the past two weeks, staff at the farm have been keeping a close eye on her as she grows – but they are now confident that Coco will be able to rejoin the rest of the flock in around six months.
Craig feeds Coco a daily diet of full-fat goats milk, and consumes around one liter per day – but is expected to work her way up to a liter and a half per day.
“Her feet were facing the wrong way when she was standing, so she couldn’t stand up to feed,” said Craig.
“I brought her into the house to bottle-feed her, but by the time her legs and feet had corrected themselves, she’d already bonded to me.
“Now, she thinks I’m her mom, so we’ll keep her in the house until she’s big enough. She’ll eventually get introduced back to the flock.
“She’s two weeks old today, so she’ll still be taking a bottle until she’s between four and six months old – probably likely to be closer to six months.”
Quirky Coco has been a lovable – and chaotic – presence in Craig’s house, enjoying relaxing by the fire and following Craig and staff from room to room.
Staff at Hillview Animal Park are thrilled by her progress and are eager to see her rejoin her flock.
“Coco gets into absolutely everything – we have to watch her all the time!” said Craig.
“She likes to lie in front of the log burner, and she follows us around all the time. If we get up to do something in the other room, she’ll follow us through.
“Anything she can catch, she will chew. She also tries to jump up on the sofa, but she’s not quite big enough to be able to do it just yet!
“We’ll be able to get her back into the flock when she’s old enough.
“She’ll be kept here and live with the rest of her flock – and hopefully, when she’s older, she’ll have some lambs of her own.”
Produced in association with SWNS Talker
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