Olde English Southdown Miniature Babydoll Sheep are a rare breed. The breed originated in Southeastern England in the 1780s and was imported into the United States in 1803.
Characteristics They have a "teddy-bear " appearance due to the wool on their faces and they appear to always be smiling. To be registered, they must measure less than 24 inches tall (shorn) at the shoulder.
Temperment Babydolls make wonderful 4-H projects and pets. They are quite docile and because of their small size they are easy to handle. With a halter and leash they can easily be trained to walk on lead. Because of their strong flocking instinct they do not do well as singles. Due to this fact, lambs will only be sold in pairs, if the buyer does not already have companions for their lamb.
Uses Our original pair was purchased as basically lawnmowers. Unlike other breeds, Babydolls do not generally bother trees and shrubs if good grass is vailable. We use them to mow in the berry patch and they fertilize at the same time! They are perfect for small acreage.
Wool Their wool is a fine and dense with a medium crimp. It has a 19 to 29 micron average fiber diameter (grades about 55 to 60). The staple is 2 to 3 inches long. Babydoll fleece is great for blending. It adds bounce and strength to alpaca fibers.
Care Babydolls require the same care as other sheep breeds, hoof care, worming, vaccinations, shearing. The handling facilities and feed are not as costly as with larger breeds. Shelter can be minimal, except at lambing time. Good fences are essential, more for their protection. Babydolls do not challenge fences and do not wonder far. Portable electric mesh fences are great if you do not already have permanent fencing.