With the increasing popularity of sheep as domesticated pets, more and more independent hotels, B&B’s and Inns are now letting fluffy sheep into their accommodation to stay for a bit of a break.
So why sheep? This may come as a bit of a shock, but sheep have actually just become the 3rd most popular pet in the UK, overtaking Rabbits and Goldfish in the process, and rapidly closing on dogs and cats! This trend has been a gradual one over the last few years, but has now hit critical mass, which is no surprise as sheep have been domesticated and by our side for almost as long as man’s best friend, dogs! Don’t believe us? Check out these stats!
Treat your sheep to a ‘sheep stay!’
With the rise of sheep being kept as pets, we’ve also seen a rise in ‘sheep stays’, similar to the many dog-friendly properties you see – but for sheep. Pampered sheep can relax with a thorough grooming – brushed fur and nails filed, treated to delicious 5* dining (no lamb!) and sleep on beds softer than they are. The sheep stays allow them to relax revitalise and socialise. And guests can fully relax on their break knowing that their woollen friends can come with them. Check out Ewe Stay who provide an easy way to find these growing businesses.
Here’s some testimonials from people who are already taking advantage of this great service:
“Our pet sheep Tom’s day job is going to nurseries and working with the kids. The retreat, Shepherds Lodge, allows him to get a break from it all” – The Hardwick family
“Eddy walks in an old sheep but always comes out as new as a lamb, with a spring in her step” – Mr. P Saxby
We also asked sheep retreat owners why they do it, Jess from Ba Ba B&B told us “I’d been asked so many times, if guests could bring their pet sheep with them, and it kind of went from there really.” While Alex from Counting Sheep explained “we find it’s much easier having sheep as guests than when we used to accommodate people.”
Should you get a sheep as a pet?
I’m sure most of us have seen sheep, either grazing in the field or at a petting zoo, but why keep them as pets?
Well, more and more sheep (and other farm livestock) are becoming our household buddies due to their gentle nature and good response to human contact. This allows children to learn responsibility and respect for animals (as well their fleece being a great hugging cushion!)
Any breed of sheep can be a pet, as long as they do not have horns and have been neutered (sorry boys!).
Most people think that all small pets are great for children but it isn’t always the case. Some pets, including hamsters and chinchillas, are nocturnal which means that when the kids want to play, their pets are snoozing happily and won’t appreciate being disturbed. Pets like gerbils and mice are quick and agile so it’s difficult for children to handle them without squeezing too hard and rabbits are prey animals and don’t always enjoy being picked up and cuddled.
So if you are already one of the thousands of people who already have a pet sheep roaming around in your house, who could use a break, or needs looking after whilst you’re away on your holidays, then check out some of the properties who are making the most of this booming industry here.