Nine Oaks Farm - Home of the Gentle Cotswold Lion
Duncan & Dodger — Lamb & Dog
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The flock at Nine Oaks Farm began in 1992 with the introduction of Meighan and Gaylan.  Meighan, a black-factored Cotswold was registered with the Black Cotswold Society.  Gaylan was registered with the American Cotswold Record Association which registers only white Cotswolds. In the fall of 1997, Seamus, a Black Cotswold ram, was added to the flock to replace Gaylan. The flock provided a beautiful variety of lustrous whites, creams, gray, brown and silver fleeces. Due to my retirement and the death of my husband, Dean, I am no longer keeping sheep.

The photo above was a very special moment which I was blessed to have captured.  Duncan was a very small lamb just a couple of days old.  He had fallen asleep on the floor between my kitchen and dining room.  Dodger came up and circled him several times as dogs will to do when selecting a place to rest.  Once he was situated he also fell asleep.  I turned from my sink full of dishes to see this endearing sight.  Softly I stepped around them and hurried to fetch my camera.  Quietly, I sank to the floor and carefully framed the shot.  I knew I would have but one chance so silently took a deep breath and held it as I pressed the shutter.  The next moment they both looked up with sleep blurred eyes wondering what I was about.

The photo has had a great run.  It first appeared on the cover of The Shepherd Magazine.  Upon seeing it, an artist friend asked permission to paint a likeness which went on to be selected as the fundraiser poster for an area animal shelter.  It was later entered in the photography competition at Maryland Sheep & Wool Festival where it won second place.  One of the sweetest moments came one December evening when I received a phone call from Margaret McColl of Yocom-McColl requesting permission to place the photo on their website. The image seems to touch all who see it and, thus, it has become our farm logo. Duncan quietly left this life on April 11, 1998. He was a sweet and gentle spirit that loved everyone he ever met. Dodger passed away peacefully in October, 2005 just short of his 15th birthday.  He was never successful as a herd dog. He more then made up for that short coming by being the best nanny to any baby animal whether in feathers or fur. 

Their image has touched many hearts and continues to do so.  It never fails to bring a smile.

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