In Canada, some sheep live outside, on pastures, all year long, with farmers feeding them hay and grain in the winter.
Other shepherds prefer to keep their flocks in the barn, but most farms use a mixture of both systems. Many sheep farmers use dogs to help with herding, and to guard and protect animals from predators like coyotes. Donkeys and llamas are also good guardian animals.
Did you know?
Sheep have nearly 360-degree vision? That’s because they have rectangular pupils!
Goats can be raised for milk or meat production, just like cattle. And just like dairy cows, dairy goats live in barns and are milked regularly. Meat goats may live on pastures too, but still need protection against cold winter weather and predators.
Quick fact: one goat produces about three litres of milk a day, which means it takes 10 goats to produce the same amount of milk as one dairy cow.
Goat milk can be an excellent alternative for adults with allergies or intolerances to cow’s milk—cheese, ice cream, yogurt, and curds are just some of the dairy goat products now widely available. It can also be suitable for children who can’t drink cow’s milk, pending consultation from a pediatrician.