My husband woke me up early Saturday morning with a "psst". I just wasn't in the mood to get up. I listened to the storms fight it out, off and all all night and into the morning. My husband psst, at me again. "your mom called about the auction."
I jumped up out of bed, the auction! I was going to be late for the farm auction that my mother and I decided to go to. "She said she didn't want to stand in the rain anyway." My husband chuckled after me.
"You could have told me that a moment ago." I yawned and grabbed his cup of coffee. I took a sip and looked out of the kitchen window. "Why is there a dog in the goat pen?" my mind was still a little slow from caffeine neglect. "Link is in the goat pen!" I exclaimed. Exclaimed seems like only a word used in pre-teen lit, but it is apt for my reaction. Our dog Link, a yellow mutt was standing just inside of the goat pen. After the punishment he received for the last time he was in there, well. . . he never goes into the goat pen, even when we are with him.
My husband hurried out the door, and I followed, calling Link out. He immediately came up to us, and Buckets, our bull Mastiff came out from under our back porch. My husband, who was a few steps ahead of me, began cussing. I looked over the gate, and one of the piglets we bought on Tuesday was laying in the mud, the back of his neck missing. A few feet away was Smokey, one of the three goats I bought my husband for his birthday several years ago. Then Delilah, the pregnant Angora laid dead. "My calf!" I screamed.
"She's fine." My husband told me as he walked back up from the field. "Where are the dogs?" He was talking about Buttercup, our pitbull/husky mix and Ya-ya our English staffy. I started calling for them. No answer. They didn't come running when my husband started the car, as they usually did. Sadly I walked back into the house and phoned my mother.
"About the auction, mom. um, I can't go. All my animals are dead." Then I had to explain, "not all. The cows are ok. And Donkey the sheep and Dora the Angora are fine. But all three pigs, Smoky, Trina, Arrow, and Delilah are all dead. So is my laying goose. Donkey and Dora only survived because of our neglect to shear them yet. They are hurt, but not deathly." My mom was upset. The pregnant angora was her's. She offered to come help, and I accepted, my husband needed to get to work and I wasn't able to do all of this alone.
I came back outside where my husband was putting up a part of the old swing set. He informed me that the pigs were a fresh kill, we need to process them. Visions of road kill eaters flashed through my head, but I knew that this was something we had to do. It wasn't the first time we had processed a fresh dog kill, I have done it with chickens. But it is enough to make your stomach roll.
We hung the three piggies by there back feet, and that is when the neighbor across the way arrived. Such relief! This man has processed pigs before, he will know how. I won't go into details about what happened here, for now.
My oldest son came outside, the dogs our on the front porch. My husband called and the didn't come, he had to walk up there and flush them out. They had been hiding up there all this time that we had been searching for them. Then my mother arrives with my uncle. With the dogs secured in the house, my mother and I start dragging goats. Smokey, my poor wonderful Smokey who thought he was a dog, and would beg, and jump on you. Pregnant Delilah, who we were just starting to see a once abused personality emerge, and we were happily awaited the birth of her babies. Tina, Smokey's mother was found next to one of the cars in the field. She loved those cars, jumping on the roofs, bleating out at the world. My goose was next to the fence, no sign of her gander. Arrow, timid Arrow was in the cow side of the barn, along with the only two living fiber animals I have left. And my sweet sweet gander, waiting for his mate to come back. It was heavy, both physically and emotionally to move all the dead. But with the deed done, we had to go back to the pigs.
My husband stoked the fire for the water to boil. My mother decided that since my husband wasn't going to work, then she wasn't needed, and went on her way.
The two dogs responsible for all this carnage are gone. Ya-ya was my husband's princess.
I moved gander into the pen with the chickens, all of whom survived this. He seemed better once in there, but the calls to his mate go unanswered.
This morning I am tired, bruised, sore and feeling weepy. I have cried several times over these few hours. No one understand or can tell me why our dogs that grew up with these animals, snapped. I think it had something to do with the pigs. I have, on the bright side, things to say. But now, reliving yesterday once again, those bright sides aren't there. Maybe the will be tonight.
10 of my animals are dead. And I hurt.