The Joy of Owning Livestock: Exercise Regime
Yes, those are eight young pigs in my neighbours field rooting around for goodies in the fresh manure of the neigbours cattle.
This was the second time this day that I discovered them at another neighbours place and had to begin the task of coaxing them home.
Here are thr rest of the wayward "herd". That is Lucy the calf standing on the road in front of Rosie, the Duroc sow, and the other two of her offspring snacking on the grain I put down for them to keep them off the road.
Lucy, who believes I am her mother, will not stay put. When I go back up the road to to coax the other 8 piglets to follow me home, Lucy follows me. It is hard to be in two places at the same time so we repeat the dance: Start Lucy toward home, hoping Rosie will join her, and I slip away to try to get the rest to join the parade. Whoops, Lucy wants to follow me and Rosie wants to wander into the neighbours plowed field on the other side of the road. ME, well, I am wandering back and forth with a pail of grain trying to tempt my charges into believing I am in charge and they should follow me.
While cows can be herded, pigs have to follow of their own volition.
It took about 1 1/2 hours but in the end I prevailed. I have patience. . . . .They let me!
Finally, I coaxed the group onto one of my fields away from the road only after the wayward eight pigs, on their own, decided they had exhausted the possibilities of rooting in the manure and came merrily down the road to join the calf, sow and other two piglets. Slowly the parade of animals followed me,-- the pied piper and pig whisper of the farm back to the barn, right into their pens as if that is the way it is supposed to happen. (cleaned out by me which is why they were loose in the first place.)
This little rural drama was not that bad except it was the second time today I have had to retrieve them. In the morning they traveled 1/2 a mile away across the bridge to another neighbour's field where the ten piglets enjoyed chasing a horse and six cows around the field. This first outing they left the calf behind as she will not walk on the wooden bridge. When I first tried to locate them Lucy was already heading home on her own. Thank God for small mercies!! This earlier "round-up" took an hour plus.
So today, I got to spend an inordinate amount of time with some of my most interesting animals, in the fresh air. In all it involved about two miles of walking, I estimate. No need for me to join a gym for exercise! I can get refreshingly exhausted with exercise in the best of company.