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August 16, 2011 / 74

Lost Guineas

I KNEW I should have bought them all cell phones!

Bad thing yesterday. A dog attacked the flock, I found a few feathers with skin attached at the initial attack point, but no guineas around, no flock noise anywhere. They’d gone to ground.

But – I’m human – so I discount the real world and live in hope. So I left their ramp/door open yesterday evening. Seven of 16 came home.

Now, I’m no Sioux Tracker, but I’m not bad… the story of what happened was all laid out there in the feathers, the tracks in the semi-dry mud, and the grass. It was as easy for me to read as “Dick and Jane” would be for most third graders.

I know at least one of the birds died because I tracked the dog to where it ate that one, but the other 8 are just missing, I’m pretty sure that they flew over a fence into a neighbor’s pasture when the attack happened and so I don’t know if they are dead or alive.

And there were indications that the dog followed them later.

When dogs do this sort of thing, I’ve seen it before, they kill one to eat, then kill the rest for fun – the chase, the capture, the kill. Never let anyone tell you that dogs are “nice” animals. Given the chance and the temptation… dogs can be killers. This dog has done this sort of thing before.

This is farm country – dogs that do this kind of thing repeatedly are dealt with severely, so I’m certain that this dog will not get the rest of the birds.

I know that this is an unpleasant topic – but life on a farm is not always rosey-mow-the-lawn. Life can be really hard when you live where you aren’t insulated from the hardness of necessity.

So… in the rain this AM I let the survivors out, and it’s kind of a testament to life that the birds trooped outside and went looking for bugs and eating grass. Life goes on… The only thing that kind of bothers me is that there were tracks of two dogs… if it’s the dog I think it is, then without the “leader” it probably won’t do anything, and probably wasn’t involved in the actual kill. With no history on this dog, and no indications that it actually WAS involved – well – you gotta give even a dog the benefit of doubt when there is some.

As I said – I live in hope.

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