Friday, November 1, 2013

The difference between farm animals and pets

I posted the pigs in costume on the Homesteading Today pig forum.  Some of the men said things like, "never dressed up my pigs, never will", or "that's the difference between farm animals and pets".  A few women said they were going to make costumes for theirs too.  One woman was looking for some felt.  She never did post pictures.  Another person (I think a man) said something about going to a thrift shop for onesies.  Now that would be funny to see.  I'm getting ideas for next year.  I don't think they make footie pajamas big enough for Roxie so it would have to be a piglet costume.

I've been thinking about the remark about farm animals vs. pets and I don't know why they have to be one or the other.  My animals are both.  Of course, some are more pet-like than others.  Some of the animals that are destined for the freezer crack me up more than ones that will live out their whole life here.  I can't help but take pictures of them and play with them just the same.  Last week Daffy entertained me by dancing on the hood of my car.

This morning I was visiting with the pigs.  Roxie's in heat and she's always extra affectionate with me this time of the month.  What I found interesting was that she was also very affectionate with the little pigs.  She took turns rubbing their tummies.  First Mickey rolled over for her rub and then Wendell took his turn. 

It's hard to think of them as "just a farm animal" because they're so smart and friendly.  Roxie made a very nice winter home for them in the new shelter.  Like last year, she picked lots of grass and made a warm nest for the 3 of them.  Not a small task.

It's interesting to see relationships build between animals too. Keri has been sharing space with my buck, Cooper, lately.  I used to think Keri hated him because when he was aggressive with the girls (and sometimes even when he wasn't) Keri would snarl and jump on him.  Last week I saw Cooper go after Keri to do his bucky thing.  I could understand why she'd want to attack him.  He can be very aggressive during breeding season.  She didn't attack him though.  She told him to back off and he did.  This week it seems every time I see them, they're lying together.  He sometimes whines at her like he wants to hump her but he doesn't touch her and she just watches him like she's enjoying his attention. Most people would say Keri is a pet because she's a dog and Cooper is a farm animal because he's a buck, but how can you distinguish between the two when you see them sleeping side by side?  I'll admit, I'd rather cuddle with Keri than Cooper.

I'm wondering if maybe it's a man/woman kind of thing.  Perhaps more women think of their livestock as pets, but I'm guessing there are plenty of men out there who feel the same way. 

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