I didn't want to complain to my husband about his sheep pen design - he was working with limited materials, limited time, and he did a good job under those conditions. However, he did receive a first hand lesson in why having no gates to the chickens except by going through the horse stall which opens up the sheep stall is not such an easy idea.
Apparently, before I got home, he and the two younger kids were trying to layer the chicken pen with dried grass. As I have found out, even the smallest crack into the horse stall is an invitation to a sheep: they can squeeze into the surprisingly smallest places! One ewe and her 6 month lamb were out in a flash, and running around in the yard. This attracted the dogs' attention, which is not a good thing. I imagine it was quite a sight.
I really do need to think about what to do about Balto. He has killed so many stray cats and chickens. He has killed a couple of the barn cats. The instinct is in him to hunt. He is an older dog, though, already 10, and he is a good guard dog. Since I live in what amounts to the wild west, a guard dog is an important deterrent. Dead sheep aren't a fun proposition.
I have had a dog in the past that learned not to eat the livestock and cats, although he would often go out into the woods himself and fight the wild boar. I could hope that Balto can learn the sheep are off-limits, like he learned with the indoor-outdoor cat (barn cats he kills, Nani he won't touch).
Another big decision I have to make is about the gelding. His laminitis is not resolving to a point where he can at least be comfortable. My farrier says it is time to put him down, but it is such a hard decision. This horse is my baby, but I hate to see him hurting. Bute isn't helping; the weight is back on him, but he is so very sore. We're going to put him in shoes on Thursday - if he can at least stand and walk comfortably I will try to keep him going.