Sheila was limpiing yesterday and as she has spent months in the mud now I had to bring her into the yards and hose her off so I could even begin to see what the problem could be. She is coated in mud.
It is a simple problem I hope. Her nails have got too long and one is tearing. I poured iodine into the cracks and I can trim the bad one today but I also brought her up to the barn to get her out of the muck. I think she needs to get dry for a while. Once I had enticed her to hobble all the way up she was very relieved to lie down in the barn with Linda’s fan. Linda from Colorado sent it to her last summer.
I sat with her for a while. Right there by her head on that piece of straw, in my short blue dress and gumboots. I leaned on the barn wall with my dirty elbows on my grubby boys knees. We talked for a while. Then we were quiet for even longer. I took photos of dogs and Sheila grunted to me using her piglet voice. A series of short gentle low reassuring grunts that go on for quite some time. In fact a very similar sound to Poppy when she is feeding her babies.
My Pig and I. She loves it when i sit down next to her. There is something so whole about Sheila, my big fat pig. I do love her. She has been folding her bad hoof under her and lying on it, maybe because it hurts, so yesterday afternoon after she drank her milk and eggs I sat in front of her face and touched her bad leg and kept lifting it a little and told her as clearly as I could that when she lies down she much stretch it out. No folding it up to swell. I went with her to her corner saying this again and touching her foot. She arranged her body as I watched and leaning on the wall lay her vast self down, holding my eye the whole time. And there – Both her front legs were stretched out and she laid her enormous head on them watching me. Good girl, I said. She grunted and wriggled down to sleep.
I could cry I love that pig so much.
I hope you have a lovely day,
Love, your friend on the farm,