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They’re Just Animals – Beyond Food

October 15, 2013

The extremes that we are seen with can be surprising. In the wake of tragedies such as the South Dakota ranches have had, comment sections can be callous, judgmental places.

On one hand we’re uncaring, unfeeling cruel people. On the other, too sentimental. If we care we’re too sensitive – if we don’t unrepeatable names are launched at us.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAEveryone who has been around farms for very long has those extraordinary animals. It might be a farm dog, or a special cow or the first show winner. We have those and sometimes they come up in unexpected ways.

Take, for example the turkey pictured. He is in full adult plumage, and although the turkeys come running at food time, this boy puts on a show at the mere site of the camera. Turkeys are stupid? Don’t tell him that! And it doesn’t matter if it’s video or still camera – he strutted around for a good 5 minutes, posing like royalty. The others don’t particularly care one way or the other, but this one – he’s a photographer’s dream!

Over the years literally thousands of animals have crossed paths, but many stick out. They might appear ordinary, might be a milemarker or might just push themselves out there.

There’s Sam – officially known as LCR Sir Sam 658 – our Charolais bull. Many photos were taken with us sitting on him, giving him baths on Sunday afternoon. I couldn’t understand why I couldn’t show him in 4-H. It was only years later I realized what an exceptional temperament Sam had.

There’s Angel – a Brown Swiss heifer that was a 4-H and FFA project. Dusty, a polled Dorset that came to mind recently for his unusual foot trimming lessons – he’d pick his feet up like a horse, which was taught young as he’d outweigh me at maturity.

I’ve been blessed with many awesome dogs and outstanding horses – but to many they were ordinary. They’re memory makers.

But don’t call them ordinary. And don’t insult us for holding them in our hearts and memories.

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