Are Sheep Dumb?

Photo from Wikipedia

A study conducted in the United Kingdom revealed that sheep are intelligent and smart. Researchers from the University of Cambridge found that these animals could pass psychological test. The sheep recognised shapes and changed their behaviour when patterns were changed.  They performed well in a maze test which is a proof of excellent memory.  In another incident in northern England, an eye-witness revealed that a flock of sheep was able to find their way on how to get past the barriers of metal grids assembled across the roads. What they did was roll over the top, lie down on their side or back and successfully found their way out.

History showed that sheep, together with other animals, were the first to be domesticated by men.  They descended from Asia and Europe. Some sheep were also trained to herd and move flocks of other animals.

They are not aggressive, easy to manage and with high production rates. They are very important in the agricultural economy as source of wool and other raw materials being used in cosmetics. Their meat known as “mutton” and milk are also highly consumed in countries like New Zealand, United Kingdom, Australia, China, India and Middle East.

Interesting facts about sheep:

  • prefer to be in group  and become stressed when isolated or removed from other sheep
  • good hearing with sensitivity to noise
  • excellent sense of smell
  • lesser ability to defend themselves
  • used as symbol for power
  • occasionally sacrificed in Islamic cultures
  • sheep are closely related to goats
  • counting sheep is a popular aid to sleep

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JW

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