Posts Tagged ‘Clarence’

Death is part of keeping livestock.  There is a saying “if you have livestock, you will have deadstock”.  Being able to say that does not make it any easier!

When you raise animals be it pigs or sheep for meat, you know there will be a time when you have to ‘let go’, and they will head to the abattoir and come back as meat for the freezer.  That is part of the whole process.  You don’t become immune to it, but you know that while you cared for the animal it had a good and healthy life.

Sometimes you have to make extremely tough decisions.  It is impossible (well for us it is) to watch an animal suffer and know that despite all the medication/care you have given it, it is still in pain.  We’ve had to make that decision with our beloved Clarence… he was crippled with arthritis and nothing was easing the pain for him.

Clarence…. the start of our journey

Or then there was the time that it was Lucy’s time to go, and we had this horrendous experience.

However, when the death of an animal happens unexpectedly, it is gut wrenching.

This is what happened to us about a fortnight ago.  We had not left the property together since the start of the pandemic, but decided we’d go to a local garden centre for a trip to the outside world!  It was a glorious sunny afternoon.  Our two dogs were left outside.  However, we came home to a trail of feathers and 5 birds gone (3 hens and 2 roosters).  And, worst of all, it was one of my favourite roosters that was taken.

Barnaby was a kind old soul. He never really got to strut his stuff, as he was always second in command to Zack.  Barnaby therefore never developed the true rooster feathers…. just keeping his place, and making sure Zack didn’t feel threatened.  If Zack was on front lawn, Barnaby would hang out with his ladies on the back lawn…. always keeping out of Zack’s way.

When something like this happens, and we presume it was a fox attack, all sorts of emotions hit you.

The guilt : why did we both go out?  One of us should have stayed at home!

The anger : with yourself for leaving the place unattended; with the dogs!!!!  What the hell were they doing?

In the end though, you can blame no-one, life must go on, and as in life and the keeping of animals there is always a risk of something going wrong.



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