POSTED: Monday, April 30, 2012 - 11:00pm
UPDATED: Monday, April 30, 2012 - 11:14pm
A huge farm dog and a tiny baby sheep formed an unlikely bond after the lamb was rejected by its mother.
Two-day-old Shetland sheep Saffron faced a dire situation when she found herself abandoned by her mother.
"Without anybody to nurse her, she would have just died," said Mary Berry, owner of Fancy Fibers Farm in Farmersville, Texas.
Berry said Saffron's mother rejected the tiny triplet, leaving the newborn to fend for herself.
"She had been going to up to all the other nursing ewes, and they had pushed her away," Berry said.
In her search for a mother, Saffron wandered up to Lucy, a Great Pyrenees guard dog on the farm.
"It was if she'd been asking, 'Are you my mama?'" Berry said.
After Saffron unsuccessfully tried to nurse from the massive dog, Lucy allowed her to climb all over her, gently nudging and encouraging the lamb along the way.
In those six minutes, the two formed a special bond. When Lucy stood up and walked away, Saffron followed.
"Lucy watching over her was important -- making her feel safe," Berry said.
Now, Saffron accepts bottle-feeding under Lucy's watchful eye.
Berry expects the now 2-week-old lamb to grow into a thriving ewe after three months on the bottle.