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Show Animal Spotlight: Eladiee & Dizzy

Get to know one of Muscatine FFA’s lamb showman Eladiee Gaucin and her lamb Dizzy!

Showing animals is a popular and successful way to bond with livestock and to show off hard work and quality livestock at state fairs, county fairs, and jackpot shows which help pay back animal expenses. Showmen don’t have to belong officially to a program, like 4-H or FFA , some students show their own livestock independently.

MHS Sophomore, Eladiee Gaucin, is one of the current FFA reporters, an officer position that helps oversee the publicity of the program. This role leads her to be a very active member in Muscatine FFA. Eladiee also shows lambs in her summers, and really enjoys being able to create a bond with the animals and to show others her hard work.

“I started showing lambs to kind of just expand what I was currently doing in FFA and to prepare for FFA things in high school,” said Eladiee.

Eladiee started showing lambs the summer after her 8th grade year, and had

Dizzy in show stance at the Muscatine county fair.

 continued showing the summer after her freshman year in high school. She had a good experience with her lamb her first summer. But had a unique experience with one of her show lambs the summer of her freshman year.

“The first memory I have from this summer is texting my Ag Advisor to go look at sheep, because she literally acted like a dog. She was flopping over a lot, and I could tell she couldn’t see well,” said Eladiee. 

Gaucin recalls that she was initially worried about the sheep. She wasn’t sure if this was normal behavior, because she was still relatively new to showing lambs. Eventually because of the lambs bad coordination and her silly walk, she was appropriately named “Dizzy”.

“My Ag Advisor had a lot of people come look at her and they couldn’t quite figure it out. The best guess they had was the sheep had some sort of neurological problem,” said Eladiee. 

In spite of Eladiee’s now compromised position with her lamb, Dizzy was still cleared healthy and able to be shown at select shows. Generally speaking, animals with an impairment are not used for showing, in order to protect the animal’s well being. Which is why Dizzy needed to have some extra examinations to make sure she was up for the challenging of showing.  With this knowledge in mind, Eladiee tried her best to make as much progress as possible while still being mindful of Dizzy’s condition.

“I struggled sometimes because I didn’t know how far I could go with her as I didn’t know what would affect her or not like my other sheep,” said Eladiee.

The main goal with Dizzy was to get her ready to be shown at the Cedar County Fair and Muscatine County fair while respecting her limits. Which would take a lot of hours and hard work from Eladiee to get Dizzy ready for those shows.

“Even if she wasn’t taking everything in that I was teaching her I was just hoping she would feel comfortable around me and other people at shows,” said Eladiee.

Eventually the time came for Dizzy to make her debut at Cedar County Fair with Eladiee. It was a nerve wracking day as it was also Dizzy’s first time around more than 10 sheep or people. But Eladiee was ready for the new challenge.

 “I was really impressed with her at her first show, it even felt like she had been listening to me and I was really proud of her,” Eladiee said.

Dizzy’s debut show went really well for Dizzy and Eladiee. Dizzy ended up 3rd in her class and behaved very well for Eladiee in her showmanship class, she even made Eladiee a little money from her performance.

Dizzy is ready for a show after being washed.

Dizzy was also outstanding at her final show at Muscatine County Fair. She ended up reserve champion commercial ewe, and was champion market pair with Eladiee’s other show lamb. Which got Eladiee a few banners and got her a good placing at the fair ribbon auction.

“Even though my show season had some added challenges, I was really happy with how it ended up and how dizzy behaved at shows,” said Eladiee.

Eladiee and Dizzy’s summer started off rocky with Dizzy’s challenges, but with Eladiee’s patience and perseverance their show season ended on a happy and successful note. Their success also shows how much time and effort Eladiee put in so Dizzy felt comfortable enough to listen to her and preform as well as she could.

Tune in next month to learn about another animal and their showman!- Addie Weggen


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    Connie KeitelOct 5, 2023 at 10:30 am

    Very thorough article, Addie. Love the sheep’s name. Eladiee had quite a challenge ahead of her, but I’m glad she was patient and worked with Dizzy to get her to show well. She should be proud of herself for that accomplishment. Keep up the good writing, Addie!