This post has sensitive photos that may be disturbing to some readers, but we think that these photos are necessary to show points and back up claims made in this article.
We have all at some time in our lives had a pet or other animal die that were close to us. I can be a traumatic experience for a child or even an adult if the animal is more like your kid than an animal, even the other animals have feelings and we have been able to prove that time after time here on Metro East Farms.
We lost an animal the first of the year “Maggie” she was a very gentile goat and was used in our therapy animal program for the senior citizens in nursing homes. I myself Paul Ragsdale and other members were very attached to her. She had developed some medical issues that were irreversible, and she had died suddenly in the goat barn. She was active the day before and shocked us when she was found in the barn deceased.
The weather was cold, and the ground was partially frozen, Justin had found her while he was feeding the animals, but they were acting strange so when he looked in the barn he found her still warm enough that rigor mortis had not set in which is usually within a few hours. Justin had to get to work, he was running late and at that time I was sick so, he removed her ad put her just outside of the fence until he got home.
Before leaving he noticed again the rest of the herd was acting strange and he snapped the pictures below.
These goats appear to be mourning and in my opinion they were, they stood like this for hours. Later I went out and covered her up because I thought it might relive some stress on the others. We also see this behavior in Elephants, Chimpanzees, Dolphins & even Sea Lions not to mention a few others. We later buried her in the evening right after dark, so they didn’t stress out the herd.
This is similar with a therapy animal Named “Mr. Winters a 4-month-old bottle fed goat. He showed no physical evidence of sickness but when he did he rapidly went downhill from there. He played, ate and drank water up until 3 hours before he passed. I took him to the vet for a postmortem and his belly was loaded with them. This was devastating I keep a pretty good eye on the herd and somehow I missed it. He was like a puppy; he would crawl up in your lap and just love on you.
We would like to think that our 4-legged babies will go to heaven and some think they do, but what ever the case they have feelings and give unconditional love and only ask you to take care of them. Do they have feelings? I think so.
Mr. Winters wll be missed dearly,
Because of the autopsy, I knew he would not be viewable they placed him in a blue bio hazard type body bag I decided it was best to leave him in it but with any of my baby animals I always wrap them in a blanket. I buried him on the farm and gave him a temporary headstone until I can fix one more permeant.
So when you feed, water or spend time with your animals always check them over, pay attention to the way they act and maybe prevent a injury or death that could be avoided