What would you do?

Discussion in 'Sheep' started by kesoaps, May 31, 2006.

  1. kesoaps

    kesoaps Well-Known Member

    Dec 18, 2004
    Washington State
    The ongoing saga of Walter, the snot nosed ram lamb:

    When I got him, it was January. I was told the papers would be here soon. I patiently waited, and waited.

    About three months into my ownership I emailed the previous owner, and when I didn't get a response, I posted on an icelandic list asking how long it generally took to get papers back? Immediately I got an email from the previous owner telling me she was sorry; giving me a story about the breeder not knowing which ram had bred the ewe, but that they'd finally gotten that all straightened out.

    A few more weeks and still no papers. I emailed the breeder, who told me she'd signed off on the papers, and that this owner had known who the sire was, it wasn't something that they'd just determined. Shortly afterwards, I received the registration papers.

    I then posted about his attitude on the list (as I'd done here,) not that I was upset with the breeder, just how best to deal with him. Someone suggested that I ask the breeder to take him back; I told them that she was dispersing her flock and I was sure she didn't want him.

    Again she wrote to me, and was a bit defensive. I assured her that aside from the attitude, I didn't have any real issues. I pointed out that I'd not given her name, not ever, so that no one knew exactly which sheep I'd been waiting on papers for or whom I'd purchased an aggressive ram from.

    She told me that she needed a ram that wasn't so closely related to her remaining ewes, and offered to trade him for a different ram. I told her I wasn't really wanting another ram, but thank you. She wrote again saying she'd trade me for a triplet ewe lamb if I wanted. This was something I was more willing to do, and told her so. She wrote back and said it would be mid-June before the ewe was ready to wean. I told her that would be fine, and we could swap then.

    Tonight I just read where she's listed the ewe lamb for sale! :grump:

    Am I surprised? No, I suppose I shouldn't be. I'm a little blown away that she'd advertise her where she knows I post so often. I would have expected her to sell the lamb privately, but not on the icelandic list where she knows I frequent.

    But now here's my dilema: Do I post on the list that she'd promised that lamb to me in trade for the ram? The good side of me says no...but part of me rationalizes that I ought to at least warn the others of what they're getting themselves into... :rolleyes: I really am beginning to feel like I need to call her out. Tell me, what would you do?
  2. mawalla

    mawalla Well-Known Member

    Oct 27, 2002
    Contact her and have a chat. Mention that you saw the ad and wondered if she 'forgot' about the arrangement.

  3. Ross

    Ross Moderator Staff Member Supporter

    May 9, 2002
    How do you know its the same ewe lamb? Honestly I'd keep the ram, and never deal with this person again. She sounds like more trouble than its worth.
  4. MorrisonCorner

    MorrisonCorner Mansfield, VT for 200 yrs

    Jul 27, 2004
    If she's dispursing her flock what does she need a ram for? That just sounds odd to me. Speaking as someone who closed down a fiber operation four times over an 8 year period, by the time we got to the third permutation of "going out of business" everybody was (justifiably) suspicious. But we kept changing the business and downsizing it. When we finally did go right to the bare walls, everyone was shocked.

    This woman sounds like she might be in the throes of doing something similar with sheep. Its one thing to do this with inanimate inventory... but there's a difference between "downsizing your flock" and "dispursal." One implies "rolling back to a smaller size." The other "going out of business in a relatively short period of time." And there are "manners and mores" which apply to each. If it is "downsizing" then naturally she'd want to keep breeding, just not at the same volume, in which case she may have forgotten about the deal: contact her. Everybody makes mistakes.

    If it is the latter.. and she's going out of business.. she may not care about the deal. But you'd like to know this so you can make other plans too. Contact her and ask what's up.

    However, I agree with Ross... this farm sounds confused and the "not knowing who bred whom" thing would make me nervous. Given that there is some question about the ram, I'd consider doing the exchange and then not doing business with this farm again.
  5. Somerhill

    Somerhill Well-Known Member

    Dec 13, 2005
    SE Ohio
    I'd advise against calling her on it on a list.
    Ever read a really nasty exchange on a list before???? The situation can get out of hand quickly, and drag on and on.
    Did it make you want to hurry out and buy sheep from or sell sheep to the people who were involved? :shrug:

    I agree, possibly contact her privately to remind her of the exchange agreement. If that is not possible, keep the ram - or sell him at the sale barn and chalk it up to experience.

    Lisa at Somerhill