In the fields where I walk my dog, there is a sign that a local farmer keeps posting on the gates which reads, “The sheep in this field are under veterinary care as a result of being attacked by a dog”. So many different times, so many different fields. I do appreciate that livestock have to be moved around (especially in the months when officials from the farming ministry are assessing subsidies per head). Even so, if every one of these signs is based on fact, somewhere there is a nefarious, serially criminal canine who has so far kept his identity secret; and a very rich vet who is possibly his accomplice.
Sometimes the sign is fixed to the gate of an empty field, like “Bull in Field” (despite all visual evidence to the contrary) which is often posted across hiking trails to deter walkers. One assumes that the evil dog has returned when the sheep are between counselling sessions with the vet and he’s eaten every one of them.
It is too easy to make fun of farmers; to suggest that a lot of them are mean-spirited, distrusting, grasping and selfish sociopaths who spend so many years hoarding what they can without enjoying any of it that it’s no surprise when in the end they are overwhelmed by the emptiness of their lives and willingly put the shotgun barrel in their mouth. No, I’d never resort to that crude stereotype. Read More→