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And nearly my child:

Read "The Lowvelder" article: - Onmin na hond geskiet word  OR if link does not work Download the PDF.

Tragic story - why is the family "member " running around looking for food on other people's property?  Surely your dog must stay home? Our dogs can not get out of our property - they are safe inside a fence keeping watch over us!

And as expected the article was not factually correct. The calves were mangled  June 18, 2008 - have a look at the photos. The state veterinarian had a look the next morning and asked that the calve be put down as he thought it does not stand a chance on recovery. I did phoned the SAPS, were referred to the Nelspruit City Council, were referred to the SPCA - and they immediately had a  problem with me because now the calve is suffering! Back to the SAPS for help and for whom we are still waiting - how do they decide who's cries for help gets answered?

July 7, 2008, just before lunch the calves came running as if the devil is chasing them! (The few that's  left) We saw dogs where the calves were grazing - the calves were immediately put in a camp for their own safety. About a hour later we heard the calves making a noise again - the german shepherd was standing just outside the fence of the camp and the labrador inside the camp. (The camp is constructed with Bonnox fencing - he had to get in over or under the fence) My first thought were to catch the dog and shove it into the neighbours .... - and the labrador attacked me and my son! It was his last charge, I were in no mood to be maimed like my calves.

And there the poor dog waited for his family to come and look for him - until the next morning about 8 o'clock when I removed him. Just then the neighbour shouted like a real "cowgirl" from the far fence "what dog is that?" then turning around with the cell phone against her head, and I still wanted to tell her......

It is quite easy for a 9 month old labrador weighing about 50Kg's to mangle a nearly 5 month old calve - especially with a german shepherd and a fox terrier? helping!

I still remember how dogs maimed 23 of my dad's 35 sheep in a matter of minutes to cause 18 lost sheep. 51% of my dad's sheep - maybe I were lucky: I only lost 25% of my cattle! The same happened a few years back when I had about 35 geese and the same neighbours dogs also ......

My biggest regret is that I lost a beautiful calve and my neighbour a beautiful dog which could have been prevented if our dog owners could behave more responsibly - for instance ensuring that our loved ones stay at home and not causing damage on the neighbours property. It is very convenient to complain the beautiful dog was part of the family, but why not act responsible enough, ensuring that the "part of the family" stay safe at home? Nobody will leave "part of the family" alone without supervision and not locking the doors! Why leave the dog free to roam?

Contact any Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals and ask them what is the reason for their existence and their aim in life is! STRAY ANIMALS! IRRESPONSIBLE ANIMAL OWNERS!

And then we are scared about the current rabies breakout in our vicinity - maybe the dog was sick and me and my son very lucky that we were not bitten. Why will a young child's dog run away the moment the owner is not in sight and act so cruel?

I do not have all the answers and not the funds to protect my small farm against stray dogs. If somebody someday solve the SPCA's problems, mine will also be solved - I believe everything will be better for everybody.  How often do we hear about children and grownups being attacked by stray dogs?

The calves are my attempt in solving a future red meat shortage. To lose 1 out of 4 cattle is going to cost me more in the near future than we might realize!

Perhaps we are lucky that the victim was an animal and not a seriously sick girl.

But life is full of little problems. Have a close look at the photo's of the poor calve - think how many times I went outside that night to have a look at my injured baby, whether the gas heater is still heating properly and how I tried in vain to comfort the pain away! And then to be put down because of a slim chance of recovery .


Interesting Google search:     Rondloper Honde

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                                        July 21, 2008