Many of the things associated with keeping farm animals are mysteries to most people. After all, the majority of animal owners don’t own anything more exotic than a dog or cat. Since the world of farm animals, including sheep, is unknown to most of us, it has probably led you to wonder what it might cost to keep an animal like that. Whether you’re considering getting a sheep or you’re just curious, here’s everything to know about what it costs to own a sheep.

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Bringing Home a New Sheep: One-Time Costs

When bringing home a sheep for the first time, you should know that there are quite a few upfront, one-time costs, like setting up adequate shelter and getting a vet checkup. While there are recurring costs, it’s likely that bringing your sheep home for the first time will cost you more in one sitting than it will again. Keep in mind that sheep typically aren’t kept as pets, and livestock animals can have unique and expensive needs.

borderdale sheep
Image Credit: Anakumka, Shutterstock


You’re not likely to find a sheep for free, but you may luck into a free sheep via local marketplaces. Sometimes, people need to offload animals quickly due to unforeseen circumstances, so keep an eye on local online and newspaper postings to see if you can luck into a free sheep.


  • $50–$300

It’s possible that you’ll find a sheep for less than $50 up for adoption, but it isn’t likely. The age and breed of sheep will likely play a major role in how much you may end up spending to adopt one. Adoption fees can also be highly variable based on the area you live in.


  • $75–$3,500

Obviously, this is a really wide price range. How much a sheep from a breeder costs will depend on the age and breed of the sheep. Ewes between the ages of 1 and 5 years tend to be the most valuable sheep because they are still well within their breeding years. Generally, though, you will be able to purchase a healthy ewe or ram for less than $250.

sheep in a flock
Image Credit: 165106, Pixabay

Initial Setup and Supplies

  • $2,255–$13,500+

Your initial setup costs when you bring a sheep home are going to be quite expensive because you will need to have an appropriate shelter and pasture area set up for your sheep. You’ll also need money set aside to start your sheep on regular preventive treatments and see the vet to verify their health. Keep in mind, too, that sheep prefer to be kept in herds, so bringing home multiple sheep is ideal.

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List of Sheep Care Supplies and Costs

Heat Source$50–100
Water Trough$50–100
Vet Visit$75–150
Shearers (optional)$2,000
Fly Spray$10–20
Parasite Prevention/Treatment$10–25

How Much Does a Sheep Cost per Month?

  • $5–$500 per month

The monthly expenses for a sheep are typically relatively low unless you need to make an expensive investment, like shelter replacement or fence repairs. It’s a good idea to set aside a monthly budget for your sheep, though. Whatever you don’t spend, you should save in case of an emergency. Sheep and other livestock can get very expensive very quickly when things come up.

Cormo Sheep Ewe
Image Credit: Amber Bussell, Shutterstock

Health Care

  • $10–$200 per month

Sheep healthcare is not an overly expensive undertaking unless a medical concern arises. Most sheep will need a vet visit from time to time, which will likely run less than $150 per sheep. Dewormers, fly spray, and other medical supplies can cost as little as $10 per month.


  • $0–$100 per month

The average cost of feeding a sheep is less than $100 annually per sheep, assuming adequate pasture grasses are available. Your monthly food expenses should not be a huge financial burden unless your sheep has special needs or something has occurred that limits access to pasture grasses.


  • $0–$10 per month

Not all sheep require grooming or shearing regularly, and some don’t require it at all. If you feel comfortable shearing sheep yourself, you can invest up front in a shearing setup, which will likely cost at least $2,000. If you only have one sheep or a small herd, paying a shearer is likely more cost effective. Most shearers charge less than $5 per head, though there may be additional fees.

man shearing sheep with thick wool
Image Credit: Myriams-Fotos, Pixabay

Environment Maintenance

  • $10–$1,000 per month

Environmental maintenance for a sheep is likely going to be the most expensive part of owning the sheep. Maintaining a healthy and safe shelter with clean bedding, access to water, secure fencing, and protection from the elements are all essential for keeping your sheep healthy.



  • $0–$100 per month

There aren’t really any toys on the market made specifically for entertaining sheep. However, there are dozens of ideas for DIY projects that will keep your sheep entertained and provide enrichment in their daily life. Sometimes, you can DIY an enriching product for your sheep using items you already have at home. Many projects call for items you can purchase at a hardware or farm supply store for low prices.

sheep running away from predators
Image Credit: hannahlmyers, Pixabay

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Total Monthly Cost of Owning a Sheep

  • $5–$500 per month

How much your sheep costs monthly can vary significantly depending on the time of year and the type and age of sheep you own. Plan for monthly expenses like food, bedding, and minor medical care. These will likely come up in some regard every month.

Additional Costs to Factor In

If at any point you have to leave town, plan ahead of time for a pet sitter or someone who can keep an eye on your sheep for you. Finding someone knowledgeable about the care of sheep can be difficult and may be expensive. The expenses can be compounded by living in a rural area, which may cause you to have to pay someone more to come out to your home to care for your sheep.

Texel sheep in the grass
Image Credit: Coatesy, Shutterstock

Owning a Sheep on a Budget

Once established, keeping a sheep on a tight budget is doable for most people. The monthly expenses can be surprisingly low. The problem with tight budgets arises when large expenses come up, like replacing shelters and making major fence repairs. Even something as simple as a weekend trip can get expensive when considering the care of your sheep. Setting aside money every month can save you a lot of money down the road if a large expense arises.

Saving Money on Sheep Care

There aren’t many ways to save money on sheep care without cutting corners. However, with proper planning and care, you can save yourself large chunks of expenses.

Related Read: 13 Fascinating & Fun Sheep Facts to Know in 2023

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The average monthly costs associated with owning a sheep are pretty affordable for most people. Planning ahead can save you a lot of money, and having backup funds for last-minute expenses related to the care of your sheep and their environment will ensure that all your sheep’s needs are met. Before bringing a sheep home, it’s essential to have a proper fence and shelter setup to keep your sheep secure and safe from predators. The initial costs of owning a sheep will likely cost you more than anything else as time goes on, but emergency expenses can arise.

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