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Tuesday, September 30, 2008

Bread and Circuses....

It's always an "interesting" time when feeding the animals at our "zoo" - especially when there are treats involved.

The first thing to happen is that the cats and chickens come running when they hear the door to my farm truck open. It makes that old car "popping" noise that they recognise as the sound of food. I store some of the bread in there that I don't bother drying.

It's amazing. Everyone might have just eaten, but they come charging in like they haven't eaten in a week. I like to sit on the tailgate and toss bread crumbs to one side - and watch the chickens crash into each other chasing them down - then toss crumbs to the opposite side - and watch them crash into each other again.

This way, they get their exercise while they eat. It's sort of like football practice, only without the tackling dummys.

Meanwhile, the cats hear the bread crumbs calling, so they try to get some before the birds do. This is usually a futile attempt because the chickens are way too fast for them, and tackle better. They end up hoovering below me, hoping that I will be nice and toss some to them. They have learned that there is "strength in numbers", however. If they all wait in one bunch, then they can stand a better chance at keeping the fowls at bay.

I have also found out that cats don't like dry bread - they love the soft stuff, though.

Meanwhile, all of this clatter the chickens are putting up has now attracted the goats. They come up along side of the barn and stand ON the fence (I, luckily, made this stretch out of combo cattle panels....) and start acting like they are starving and that they want some, too.

OK, so I cave and take a few slices down to them. While I'm at it, I grab a dish of dry dog food for our LGD - Yani. I pour it into her dish but, she can't get to it because of the goats.

Here she is, supposed to be PROTECTING these things and she has to avoid being trampled, herself. I toss 3-4 slices of bread a ways back from the fence (bread flies like a Frisbee....) so the goats will chase it and allow Yani to get to her food.

It works in rehearsal but, instead of the GOATS going for the bread - YANI does.

So I gives up and tosses the rest of the bread into the pen and let Yani get to her dish on her own (the goats don't bother her food....).

This, of course, alerts several of the chickens - who actually are aware that they can either -
(A) Fit through the fence


(B) Fly over the fence.

The cats figure that if the chickens are riled up, then they want to be invited to the party, too.

Massive insanity ensues as dog, goats, cats and chickens chase bread and each other around the pen. Meanwhile, the stupid chickens - the ones who DON'T realize they can fit through the fence or fly over it - and the ones who CAN'T do either, are crowding the OUTSIDE of the fence.

FINALLY, Yani sees that her dish is clear, so she goes to eat breakfast. The last I saw was one of the younger kittens poking a VERY tentative hand through the fence at Yani's dish..... sorta like a mouse tempting a Grizzly bear.

(The cat was still ok later, so I assume nothing evil happened....)

Then, I go inside the house, and the two "house" dogs want me to give THEM a goodie!

......and I haven't had breakfast yet.....

1 comment:

  1. Boy! I would of liked to have seen that sight!


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