How to be Ready for Shearing

The sheep must be...

  • Dry (wet sheep cannot be sheared)
  • In a small pen next to the shearing area when the shearer arrives
  • Not full. For happier sheep, do not feed them for at least 12 hours before shearing (a full stomach makes them uncomfortable, and can even cause health problems)

The shearing area must be... 

  • Flat, clean, dry, and well-lit but not in direct sunlight
  • Near the small pen where the sheep are. As a courtesy, you should not expect the shearer to also catch the sheep; shearing is already physically demanding.
  • Less than 95 Degrees Farenheit. Too hot and it is dangerous for the sheep (and everybody).

Please make sure the following are available:

  • An adult assistant (preferably the owner or caretaker of the sheep) to help catch the sheep, clear away wool, and ensure the safety of both sheep and shearer. It is also a good time to check on the health of each animal, since you can examine each of them close-up.
  • A broom or rake to sweep the shearing area in between sheep.

For more information about the preparation of sheep and wool, see the American Sheep Industry's website.