The Jacob sheep is a rare breed, striking in appearance with its black (or gray) and white face, spotted fleece, and multiple horns. Both ewes and rams can have 2, 4, or 6 horns and the horns of rams may reach over 30 inches.
Jacob sheep are smaller than modern domestic breeds and are resistant to many of the health problems that afflict other sheep. The wool is soft and lofty, grading in the medium-fine range, and is a favorite of handspinners. The Jacob sheep may have originated in what is now Syria 3000 years ago but has been raised in England for at least 350 years. Jacob sheep were imported into North America for zoological parks in the early 1900s, with more imports in the 1950s and 1970s. It was only in 1988 that enthusiasts created the Jacob Sheep Breeders Association (JSBA) to protect and conserve the breed. Robin served as Registrar for JSBA for over ten years.