Just the other day, my city slicker sister dropped by for a visit. She, and her two children followed me around as I showed them all the things that I'm proud of about our farm. Also in tow were my four children and my lovely brother-in-law who had come to stay for a few days.
We meandered through the garden, stopping to watch the chooks, ducks and geese scratching around. The rooster even "cock-a-doodle-dooed" for us! We strolled past the calves munching away, batting their big brown eyes, stopping so that my little four year old niece could pat one of the calves.
Now, when we got to the pigs (I'm calling them pigs now as they are not little piglets anymore) we stopped so that I could introduce Pinky, Spot and Fudge. As usual, my two dogs were with us. The dogs went up against the fence, nose to nose with the pigs, to say "Hello". The next thing that happened seemed to unfold like a slow motion film...
I lent over the fence to pat Spot. As I did this, she stood up, placing
her two front legs onto the fence. Usually when one of the pigs does
this, I just tap them on the nose and they stand down but, Spot did not
get down. She continued to lean on the fence with her front legs, while
lifting up her back legs, one after the other until she was literally
climbing the fence! As a group, we all just stood there, mouths agape, and watched her
climb right over the fence! Spot casually landed on the ground, oblivious to us startled onlookers, and proceeded to eat the grass.
Only hours before, the dogs had been seen talking to the pigs through
the fence...the very same fence that Spot had just now climbed over. Quite
suspicious really as last time the pigs made an escape, the dogs seemed to be involved.
Watching her climb, I had visions of all three
escaping again and, of me spending all afternoon chasing three pigs while
trying to lure them back to their pen...
Quickly my brain went into overdrive as I tried to figure out a way to
get Spot contained before Pinky and Fudge followed her lead! Instead of
thinking rationally, the first thing I did was to dive at her. I thought
that if I could catch her, I could somehow lift her back into the pen
(with help of course-she is quite large now). Instead, I ended up on my knees in the grass as she
swiftly moved out of the way. She wasn't just going to stand there while
a big human lunged towards her!
My apprehension soon
vanished when I realised that she did not have any notions of trotting away. She was
content to be close by, which was a big relief.
My brother-in-law tried to direct Spot towards the pen opening but, the
dogs were trying to help too. They were rounding Spot up and pushing her
towards my brother-in-law! It's all quite funny when I think about it
now. Spot was probably secretly laughing at us.
As usual, food was the
key to successfully walking her back into the pig pen. She happily joined
her brothers in a meal of bread and fruit. And I breathed a sigh of
relief, for a moment at least.