Animal

Two-year-old boy spends his lockdown with a lamb rejected by its mum at birth


Henry, two, is spending his time in lockdown with Peter Pan, a five-week-old lamb rejected by its mother at birth (Picture: Len Copland / SWNS)

This might be the cutest lockdown friendship yet.

Two-year-old Henry Holmes is spending his time in quarantine with a new pal: a five-week-old lamb being hand-reared by the family.

The lamb, named Peter Pan, has been taken in by the Holmes family after its mother rejected it at birth.

Henry and the lamb bonded instantly, and now the pair play happily together every day.

Henry even takes Peter Pan for walks on a lead in the fields behind their home.

Mum Kristen Holmes, 38, who’s also mum to four-year-old son Dexter, said: ‘The kids love it, they think it’s great.

‘I think the lamb thinks my youngest son is another lamb – he loves to headbutt him, and Henry loves it, he stands there just laughing away.

The family take Peter Pan for walks on a lead in the fields (Picture: Len Copland / SWNS)

‘Peter has become a bit of a celebrity around here, we often take him for walks on a lead around the houses and people will double-take, thinking he’s a dog.

‘Some of our neighbours who know we have a lamb will come and stand at our back gate and make ‘baa’-ing noises, and Peter will talk back to them.’

Hairdresser Kristen lives in Sherborne, Dorset, with husband Robin, 49, and their two sons Dexter and Henry.

The family have a smallholding in nearby Leigh, where they keep sheep, peacocks, guinea fowl, two llamas, and an alpaca.

When the lamb is old enough he’ll go back to living in the field with other sheep (Picture: Len Copland / SWNS)

‘We have about 12 sheep up there, and during lambing season this year we got about 15 lambs,’ Kristen explains.

‘The sheep that had Peter also had one other lamb – but when they were born, she took to the other one immediately but not to Peter.

‘She was really nasty to him, throwing him around the enclosure and headbutting him. It was horrible to watch.

‘We didn’t think he was going to make it, because his breathing was being affected.

‘We put him in a seperate part of the pen and gave it 48 hours, to see if she would bond with him, but she just didn’t want him.

Peter Pan and Henry formed an immediate bond (Picture: Len Copland / SWNS)

‘Eventually we had to take him home ourselves, and try to bottle feed him.’

At first, Peter would not take to a bottle – but now, he is bottle-fed every day and wanders freely in and out of the house.

He loves to cuddle up with the family and will follow them around wherever they go.

The family plan to take Peter Pan back up to live in the fields in the next two or three weeks, but the family go up there almost every day to check on the animals, so Peter Pan and Henry’s friendship won’t be cut short.

‘He loves being petted,’ says Kristen. ‘If I’m out wandering around the garden, he’ll literally be chasing round after me.

‘He slept in the house at first, but he’s growing quite quickly, so now he sleeps out in the garden.

‘But he will stand outside and ‘baa’ at us for attention. All my friends are so envious, as they haven’t been able to come over and see him.

‘I think Henry will be really sad when he has to go – he calls the lamb ‘my baby’.

‘But we’ll definitely be keeping him for breeding. He’s so friendly now, and he’ll stay friendly.’

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