Raising Sheep: The Basics

With a little land, know-how, and a bit of help, raising sheep is a practical way of obtaining meat and fiber.



raising sheep
A proud Jacob ewe with her lamb. Successfully raising sheep of this breed will yield you wool with a medium-fine texture and high luster, making it ideal for handspinning.
PHOTO: ISTOCKPHOTO/CHRIS PRICE
flock of sheep
A flock of Dorset sheep graze on Moon in the Pond Farm in southwest Massachusetts.
JASON HOUSTON
lambs
Two lambs nuzzle.
ISTOCKPHOTO/JOE GOUGH
sheep and lamb
A mother ewe and her lamb graze green pastures. A well-managed pasture is the best source of feed for your sheep. It’s economical, and provides them with the food nature intended them to eat: fresh grasses, legumes and assorted weeds and woody species.
GETTY IMAGES/DAVID SANGER
hair sheep breeds
Hair sheep breeds such as the Katahdin never need to be sheared, making them a top choice for meat production.
ISTOCKPHOTO/GENO SAJKO
Dorset sheep
A Dorset sheep. This breed’s fleece is lightweight and good for handspinning.
JASON HOUSTON
shearing
A Dorset sheep gets a careful shearing.
JASON HOUSTON
Merino sheep
A blockade of Merino sheep.
ISTOCKPHOTO/DAVE RANKINE











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