My nation is located in northern Eurasia, ranging from the Kola peninsula to Alaska, so LOTS of Taiga climate. It is a nation of nordic origin, and with humanoid bears instead of humans.
So...what would be the reason to have LOTS of sheep. In fact, having many more sheep than cattle, much more than the country needs to feed itself. Millions and millions of sheep. As soon as you leave a big city, you see normal farms, but lots of pastures with sheep.
We also have cows and pigs and poultry, but the most abduant farm animal is the sheep.
What could be the reasons for sheep being in the place of cows?
As a bonus, how could such a giant population of sheep be maintained, and how could this have developed?
I am aiming for the early medieval ages as the start of the "sheep boom". Did the Vikings bring it to my nation? Did the sheep come from Asia?
EDIT: The sheep are used for wool and milk, but the main purpose of the sheep is to be slaughtered for their delicious meat.