Saturday, June 1, 2013

The Pig Saga Continues...

One thing I learned from yesterday:  I have marvelously caring friends who get very twitchy when I'm sad.  The texts, phone calls, emails, and comments really helped my mood.  Thank you.  Still sad, but there is nothing I can do in any of the bad news situations except pray and go to a funeral.  So I will.

Now, back to our regularly scheduled program...

I suggest you listen to our new theme song while reading this post.

Throughout this entire pig ordeal, I have learned and done more things than I ever could have imagined.  If I were to write it all out, it would take me days to tell the whole story.  I'll just give you the highlights.

(If I knew how to make a button, this is where it would be.  And it would say "118* things I learned about vets, pigs, pig maladies, and what to do about them.")

1.  There is only one vet in our area that deals with swine. 
2.  Swine is the official term for pigs.
3.  Vets will not do fecal tests on animals they have not seen before.
4.  It is best to figure this out before collecting, double-bagging, and driving fecal samples to the vet's office.
12.  A 75 pound dead pig is much easier to drag to the back field than a 200 pound pig.
13.  Children still find dead pigs fascinating.
14.  When you dispose of a 200 pound dead pig in the back field, the imprint in the field is still there a year later.
5.  Human's can get the same illness as a pig.
6.  When a person thinks she is dying from the same thing that killed her pig, she just might panic.
7.  And send out texts similar to this:

8.  And call her husband, mom, and sister-in-law to discuss the situation.
9.  When a person is dying, there is no such thing as TMI.
10.  People tend to laugh when told the pigs and their owner have the same "bathroom issues".
11.  It's still not funny.
15.  The one swine vet may not actually exist.  I have yet to hear from or see him.
16.  When a pig dies and a vet chooses not to come or even call, sister-in-law vet techs get anxious and suggest completely crazy things to try.

14.  I tend to ignore crazy ideas.
15.  Sister-in-law vet techs don't like to be ignored and will just show up at your door, even if they live 2 hours away.
16.  She will have a couple bags full of medicines, needles, and syringes.
17.  A rope is very handy when trying to catch an uncooperative pig.
18.  Sister-in-law and I need to take lasso lessons.
19.  When a pig is finally caught with a rope in the most difficult way possible, he will squeal, kick, bite, spin around, run, and put up quite a fuss.
20.  Sister-in-law vet techs are strong!
21.  And just as stubborn as a pig.
22.  It is important to be quick when injecting an uncooperative pig.
22.  I am a rock star when it comes to giving a pig multiple injections.
23.  No, sister-in-law wasn't just saying that. 
24.  A pig should only receive 5ml of lincomix in one injection site, even if he needs 10ml.  You need to stick him twice.
25.  If you only want to give a pig 5ml of meds at a time, don't put 10 in the syringe.
26.  A pig who has been given 10 ml of lincomix in one shot will live, but he will have one heck of a painful bump at the injection site.
27.  If your pig has diarrhea, it's a good sign, as that can be fixed.
28.  If a human has diarrhea, it's not good in any way, shape, or form.
29.  Catching and injecting meds into pigs is a great way to bond with your sister-in-law.
30.  You may even end up with your own secret-meaning handshake.
31.  And promises to always call the other when a farm animal is sick and in need of a shot.
31.  When a pig has diarrhea, electrolytes are very helpful in warding off dehydration.
32.  Electrolytes taste nasty.
33.  So I've been told.
33.  Add sugar to the electrolyte/water mix and the pigs will drink every drop.
34.  I just might become a real farmer after all.
35.  Once I actually get through this little bout of assumed salmonella.

*I have no idea how many things I learned.  I got tired of going back and changing the numbers each time I thought to add a point or rearrange the order.  Thus the completely wacky numbering we have going on.

Because of the number of needles being thrown around, the amount of mud in the pen after 5 hours of rain, and the incredible tantrums thrown by the pigs, I didn't let any kids in to take photos.  You're going to have to live with drawings.

Times three.

This morning, the three pigs are still alive.

It's been raining for hours and hours, so the pen is just a pit of deep mud.  The pigs have the small barn area to stay dry, so I can't get a good read on how active they are.

I'll keep you posted.

Have a lovely day!


  1. First, it's far too early in the morning for Pat Benatar... but thank you for the effort. :)

    Second, I'm so sorry you got sick.

    Third, I'm secretly very glad our pet frog died. Now we don't have any animals at all to care for. Just lots of kids!

    I pray that you are all feeling much better and that the pig pen stays drama free for a long time!

    1. I was secretly glad the chickens got eaten. This was a looong winter, and would have been a pain in the neck, especially during the kitchen remodel.

      Everyone (most happily me) seems to be doing much better.

  2. Hope you're getting better (and feeling a little more cheerful).

    Your drawings are awesome - I know they're meant to be of a rodeo, but the second one makes your pig look like a ninja. Your SIL rocks :)

    And if it's raining, I don't want to mow your lawn just yet ;)

    1. Now that we've been to the funeral, it's not so bad. The worry of how Giant would handle it was a big weight on me. (Oh, yeah, I never said who died. The dad/coach of Giant's 3v3 soccer team that made it to nationals in Disneyworld last year.)

      Thanks, a ninja, huh?

      SIL is my favorite SIL.

      Oh, but it needs it!! Especially after all the rain!

  3. 1. You made me laugh until I cried. 2. Bottom line (pa dum dum) is you AND the pigs have, um, scours? 3. If I can't have video of this debacle, then your drawings are the next best thing. In some ways, maybe even the best after all. 4. Why in the hell was one of you wearing a skirt?! ;)

    1. 1. Hope you had a tissue. 2. Ha! and um, unfortunately, yes. 3. Glad you like them. 4. Hahaha! As I drew it, I asked the same thing. Then Giant saw it and asked, too. I guess I just consider SIL a lady. (That statement would make her laugh so hard!)

  4. I was just talking about this blog the other day when a friend and I were discussing the trend of growing/raising your own food...and this is why I don't (aside from not having the land)!!! You're a champ.

    1. Aaaahh, don't use me as a guide! We're terrible fake farmers! And we don't have good luck. Horrible, actually. Others do much better. Use them as examples!

  5. Poor pigs, poor Coop Mama (or are you the fly on the wall?).
    I hope everyone feels better soon. I don't know about you - TMI alert - but when I'm stressed I get tummy troubles and you have every right to be stressed so maybe that's where your issues are coming from?
    Hope your weekend gets better.......

    1. Ha! I never thought about being the fly, but that is the perfect idea!

      And more hahaha! The week before I got married, I broke out in a terrible rash on my arms. My grandma was convinced it was "just nerves", and that has become my husband and I's joke. Whenever something odd happens with our health, we say, "oh, it's just nerves". He said the same thing this time.
      Thanks, they did.

  6. In my head, your entire life is backed up by a continuously running loop of the Benny Hill music.

    1. I never understood why my dad liked that show. I prefer something a bit more modern. :)

  7. Exercise is supposedly a good stress-relief measure, and I can't imagine a better workout than lassoing pigs. Hope you are feeling better soon.

    1. It actually helped a great deal. By the end, SIL were laughing uproariously.
      I am feeling better, thanks.

  8. I really shouldn't be laughing so hard because this is really sad...but so darn funny to hear you share it. I do hope you don't have what the pigs have, actually I wish the pigs didn't have what they have either. I will be anxiously watching my email box for updates in "As the Pigs Turn" saga. Thank goodness for fabulous SIL's!

    1. I have to laugh when these things happen. I would be a blubbering mess if I didn't.

      Ha! Why didn't I think of that name?!?! "As the Pig Turns" is perfect!

      Fabulous SIL are worth their weight, I tell ya!

  9. And there's one more reason I won't be raising (or eating) anything pork related. :) I tried to cover up my mouth to stop the laughter as the list went on...I really just didn't work! I'm sorry for the fact you had to go through all that but I love the way you presented it!

  10. Ha! My SIL, watching the pigs root around and basically turn the pen into a bigger mess of mud, had a conversation about why pigs were considered unclean in the Old Testament. They are a mess sometimes!
    Laughing is encouraged on this blog. No need to cover it up. :)

  11. Very sorry to hear about the funeral :( (I caught who it was in the comments) I hope your son was/is okay.

    I have to be honest... reading your pig sagas sure does nothing in regard to me wanting to live on a farm with any sort of livestock haha. I don't think I could handle it. My mother and step-father had gotten two pigs once (and lambs), but never thereafter. I should ask how that experience was for them. I never paid much attention.

    No pics! You need to train your runts young, so be able to endure the craziness while still being able to capture the beauty and hilarity of these events life has to offer! The drawings will do... I can't tell, though, if the one stick figure with a triangle is signifying a dress or a big butt >.>

    I'm glad you are learning so much! Hope you no longer have the squirts! Just saying...

    Jak at The Cryton Chronicles & Dreams in the Shade of Ink


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