Monday, March 13, 2006

Peggy Sheep Passed Away

I never thought I'd miss an animal so much. Well another one after Gale dog. Peggy was a smart sheep. She was black, brown and grey. Only a few white hairs on her forehead. She knew how to get into and out of most anything. She tolerated goats and taught disrespectful border collies a lesson or two. She was about 20 when she died (last Thursday). I had to have Wayne put her to sleep.

I was folding cloths on the bed in the back room when I saw her laying in the doorway to the pole barn. I knew that wasn't right. We had to help her get out from under the hay feeder earlier that week and I had to help her get up the week before. I pulled her from the doorway. She was on her side and could not get up. I tried to get her onto her sternum. She was bloaty and laying upright would help relieve some gas. She didn't have the strenght. It is amazing how heavy an animal is when they are so sick or dead.

I ran to the dairy barn to tell Dave what happened. Claire had to go to school and I wanted to make sure she could go to the barn while I waited for Wayne. I rang Wayne and he came about a long hour later.

Cecil and Jenny were up, so I asked Cecil to help me get her out of the sheep pen. I didn't want the yearling ewes to trample her if they got stirred up. The poor old ewe deserved more respect than some stupid ewes looking for chaos. We moved her to the workshop and I tried again to get her to sit up so that she wouldn't be in so much pain. It didn't work. I talked to her and stroked her front legs. She never liked it when you touched her face, but I use to stroke her front leg when I needed her to sit still for some reason. She stopped grinding her teach and didn't thrash so much when I did that.

She did go peacefully. I only wish she didn't have to go through the pain of bloat. The curse of a ruminant on their side for too long. Poor Peggy. Dave burried her in the knoll near the stream that runs down the field behind the barn. It is near the spot that a doe (deer) has her kids in the spring. We burried a calf there last year, a twin bull who wasn't right and died too young.

I'll miss her. We kept her last Ram, Peter Sheep. Lisa borrowed him this fall and she has Peggy's grandchildren coming out her ears. Peter Sheep did a GREAT job. Dave Knackley has a ewe lamb that was born in Chesterfield, Curley. She was like her mom, lots of lambs and crafty. Good genes. I also have Rowan the Goat. He is actually a sheep, but he has horns and likes to stand on things, so we call him Rowan the Goat. He is a whether. Fat, keeps rams/bucks company and lets Claire scratch is nose.

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