Meet The Sheep
(all livestock auction rescues)

"Baa Baa black sheep, have you any wool?
No sir, no sir, NO bags full!"

Huh? Sheep? No wool? What's with that??? We won't be spinning any fiber or knitting any sweaters from the wool of these rescued sheep. Our flock is made up of a breed called Katahdin Hair Sheep (named after Mt. Katahdin in Maine). Instead of fleece, these sheep's coats consist of hair so they never have to be shorn! Instead, they shed! (There are exceptions to every rule… read about Timothy below).

Katahdin sheep are classified as a "meat" breed so we have no doubt that all the adorable little lambs we rescued at spring auctions were destined for slaughter and human consumption. We have a developed a taste for lambs too, though not gastronomically.  Rather than imagining them on a restaurant menu or dinner plate, our satisfaction comes not from eating them, but by saving them and then doing whatever we can to ensure that they live out their lives in the peace, protection and possibility that is Tomten Farm and Sanctuary.

Fiona BAAAgonia O'Hair and Timothy Sullivan O'Hair   Rescued!

We rescued the O'Hair twins at a local livestock auction on St. Patrick's Day, 2015 (thus their Irish names). They were our first sheep rescues and arrived at the farm after 30 days of quarantine at Board Member Laima W's home. Needless to say, they were showered with so much love there that they were fully socialized by the time they trotted through our gate. They may have been the first lambs we saved but we knew they would not be our last. And we're not at all sheepish about gushing about our love for these sweet, gentle souls.

Fiona (front) and Timothy identified with only numbers at this point in their young lives, waiting with other sheep to be run through the auction and at a very high risk of going to slaughter.

Safe!! Fiona O'Hair (left) and Timothy Sullivan O'Hair in comfy 30-day quarantine quarters waiting for the ok to move on to Tomten.

Fiona (left) and Timothy young adults who were saved together and are still together enjoying peace, protection and possibility at Tomten Farm and Sanctuary.

Dogs Doodle. Why Not Sheep?

While Fiona BAAAgonia O'Hair's HAIR shed when she was a yearling, Timothy Sullivan O'Hair spent his first winter growing a thick WOOL coat indicating that he was, in fact a mixed-breed (not unusual in meat animals)… part hair sheep and part wool sheep. And so we have our own designer sheep in sanctuary, who we affectionately call our "Sheepadoodle."  What do you think... should we change his name to Timothy Sullivan NO'Hair??

Fiona BAAAgonia, Hair Sheep

Timothy Sullivan, Sheepadoodle

Meet the NoWool Family...
Mom Gladys and Sons, Gustavo and Giuseppe   Rescued!

Another spring (2016), same livestock auction. Most are there hoping to scoop up tender young lambs for Easter and Passover feasts. Past experience had taught us that most of the sheep at this auction get separated and run through the selling floor by age, gender and seller. That day, however, just as the bidding started, a trailer pulled up with a ewe and two lambs. The lambs were nursing so we thought they might be hers since all had arrived together. Surprisingly, the auction owner asked if we were interested in bidding on them as a unit and ran them through together… highest bidder to take all! With too many bidders for too few available lambs that day, we were bid up beyond our budget and probably paid a little too much, but Gladys and her two lambs were all saved! A mission of life or death, love over money, and above all, a future of peace, protection and possibility for all three at Tomten Farm and Sanctuary.

Gladys, Gustavo and Giuseppe waiting to go up for bid at auction. 

Safe!! The NoWool family settling in for their 30-day quarantine under the loving care of Board Member Laima W.

Family Photo Gallery…Then and Now
Top row from left: Quarantine photos of Mother Gladys, Son Gustavo*, Son Giuseppe
Bottom row: Same order, now all enjoying Peace, Protection and Possibility at Tomten Farm and Sanctuary.
* Note: We suspect Gustavo may be a mixed breed as well — maybe Katahdin and Dorper (?) — and qualify for the coveted "Sheepadoodle" title.

Introducing Tomten's
Animal Sponsorship Program

Sponsor a Sheep
Become an Honorary Tomten

When you sponsor Fiona, Timothy, Gladys, Giuseppe or Gustavo, you become an Honorary Tomten, helping us provide peace, protection and possibility while getting to know "your" sheep—even if you live thousands of miles away.

Your one-year Sheep Sponsorship gives Honorary Tomtens an opportunity to make a direct impact on the lives of their favorite animal. You'll receive lots of updates beyond our traditional public posts. And while you may not be able to be here personally,  we will make sure you feel as though you are with regular photos (including a few surprise videos) sent to your phone or email all year long!

Here's How Sponsorship Works:
Sponsors make a one-time tax-deductible donation of 50% of a sheep's total estimated yearly care expenses. Tomten Farm and Sanctuary applies those funds to the daily care of the sanctuary sheep you choose to help. Upon receipt of your donation, TF&S removes the sheep from our "animals available for sponsorship" list. Then comes the exciting part: our resident Tomten waves his magic wand and makes you an Honorary Tomten!! Next, we announce the exciting news to TF&S supporters via social media including Facebook, Instagram and this website. (To ensure your privacy, we will share your first name, last initial only). We also encourage you to share the story behind your sponsorship choice. And, if you like, you can also send a photo of yourself to post on this page with "your" sheep. We guarantee that our sheep will think you are just baaaa-ewe-tiful!

Sound Good?
Your one-time tax-deductible donation of $750 will sponsor a Tomten sheep and receive Honorary Tomten status for one year. That amount is your half of the expenses incurred to support that animal—your special gift to Fiona, Timothy, Gladys, Giuseppe or Gustavo. The other half is paid by a second Honorary Tomten (Sponsor) or Tomten Farm and Sanctuary, if no one else cares to step up for that animal.

However you look at it—$62.50 per month, $14.42 per week or $2.05 per day—sponsorship is a fun and oh-so-gratifying way to provide peace, protection and possibility to animals in need, making a real difference in their day-to-day lives all year long.

Want to Start Today?
Simply go to the Donate button at the bottom of this column and indicate you want to donate $750.  Be sure to tell us which sheep you want to sponsor* and our Tomten will wave his magic wand making you an Honorary Tomten this very day!

More Ways to Help
You can also donate as little as $10 per month toward supporting any animal (not just sheep) that you choose OR donate to our General Fund. We offer all kinds of other tax-deductible donation options.
Click here for details.

*Sorry, we know everyone has their favorites; but since each sponsorship is for 50% of care, only two Honorary Tomtens per sheep per year are available and are selected in the order they were received.

Donate Now


Did You Know...

Wondering why the lambs have yellow tags in their ears in some of these photos? The U.S. Department of Agriculture requires almost all sheep and lambs to have premise identification ear tags before leaving their farm of origin. The ear tags carry the owner's premise identification number on one side and a sequential number on the other side, which can be used for individual record keeping. In addition to applying tags, producers are required to keep records for five years after the animals have been sold.

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Tomten Farm and Sanctuary
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