Wool ewe be my family? Orphaned lamb Brian finds a new home

An orphaned lamb has got its spring back in its step after being adopted by a four-year-old girl and her pet dog - and now loves going for “walkies”.

Saturday, 3rd April 2021, 9:00 am
Ruby Clough, four, loves to take Brian the lamb for a stroll

Brian the lamb was fostered by Ruby Clough, four, after his mother died in childbirth and sister soon after.

The farmer was only too happy to let Ruby do the hard work needed to raise a vulnerable baby that needed special attention and regular bottle feeds.

And the leaping lamb was an instant surprise hit with the girl’s dog - border terrier Nel. The two four-legged friends are now inseparable - leaving neighbours to do a double take when they go on walks together, each on a dog leash.

Brian with Tammy Blackburn at her home in Gomersal

Brian loves nothing more than sneaking into Nel’s dog bed for a snuggle, or going for “zoomies” around the garden with his fluffy friend.

The Blue Texel sleeps in the house in a crate near his doggy pals, Nel and other dog Brooke.

The cute lamb will stay with Ruby and her parents Tammy Blackburn and Andrew Clough, 27 and 52, until he’s big enough to join the rest of the flock.

Dog groomer Tammy added: “At first they just sort of sniffed round him, and when he baa’d for milk they ran over to him.

Ruby gives Brian a cuddle

“One of the dogs started licking him and the other was sniffing him - they just accepted him like he was a little pup!

“We get double-takes when we’re out walking them all.

“Someone backtracked and said ‘is that a lamb or am I seeing things?’”

Tammy was helping with lambing at the farm behind their home in Gomersal when she spotted lonely Brian in early March.

She said: “He was put under this heat lamp all on his own it was just a bit like ‘awww!’”

The next day she brought her daughter Ruby along to meet him.

The youngster begged her to let her take him home.

The farmer was happy for the mum and daughter to foster the lamb, which needed to be bottle fed, until he was big enough to re-enter his flock as a breeding ram.

After pleading with Andrew on FaceTime, the pair scooped up new born Brian and drove him home on Tammy’s knee to meet the other canine members of the family.

Tammy said: “At first he was scared but within an hour he came round to the idea, and then he just followed them out into the garden.”

Nel and Brian have been inseparable ever since, with the dogs cuddling up to the lamb in his crate, and Brian sneaking into the dog’s bed when Tammy isn’t looking.

After Brian is taken off the bottle and gets too big for domestic life, he will re-join the flock in the field behind the household to be used for breeding in a couple of months’ time.