Hogs and Horses

DCF Horses and Hogs

I’ve been backing up photos through google+ (an option now available if you happen to use Picasa) and it struck me how many of the farm photos show groups of animals hanging out and getting along. Ducks and chickens, turkeys and Bantams, ducks and sheep, turkeys and hogs… The cat, Iago, and anybody who will stand still long enough for her to snuggle.

I’ve had horses for many years and one of the things I heard people say with an air of total authority was that horses and pigs do not get along.

DCF Ringo and PhilipI beg to differ! Ringo in particular is happy to befriend creatures of all stripes – he loves the cat, follows chickens around, and chats through the fence with the hogs (this is our old boar, Philip). When a particularly adventurous group of piglets got out, where did they head? Straight for Ringo! They tugged on his tail and chased each other through and around his feet and he just stood there, head down, curious and gentle.

The oddest bond he has ever formed was with a wild rabbit. The rabbit regularly sought him out and would sprawl in a sunny spot in the horse paddock. Ringo would amble over and proceed to give the rabbit a massage, which the rabbit appeared to thoroughly enjoy. How on earth this peculiar relationship ever began is beyond me. Why would a wild rabbit sit still long enough to allow a HUGE animal like a horse to walk over and give it a back rub that first time? Mysterious, but kind of cool.

Unfortunately, hawk, owl, or eagle likely got the rabbit because after several months of the rabbit hanging out with Ringo it suddenly disappeared.

Perhaps in the course of the Great Photo Sort Project I’ll come across a photo of the bunny and post it…

6 responses to “Hogs and Horses

  1. Nice…peaceful moments. Thanks.

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  2. I think it shows that your animals are well taken care of for them to get along as they do.

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  3. Love this. I find it fascinating that animals will bond across species like that – I guess I shouldn’t be surprised, since WE bond with THEM and vice versa, but as you point out – a half ton horse and a 5 lb rabbit? Wow. Our cat Teak is missing the dog…they were accustomed to checking in with each other a few times a day – not buddies exactly, but housemates. There’s been a yowl of disappointment or two, she doesn’t like having her routine knocked out of kilter. Me neither.

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  4. Please find photos of that! This post makes me miss my horses back on the farm. If someone leaves any of the doors to the house open in summer and we have the horses out, Ike will try and get inside.

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  5. I love interspecial relationships. Like men and women, for example.

    I used to have a ferret and a cat. The ferret was our cat’s pet. It was wonderful watching them together.

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  6. My horse, April, loved pigs as well. Whenever she got out, she would cross the road and stand by the pig pen and visit with the neighbor’s pigs. She also liked to chase and be chased by the neighbor’s dog who would come into her pasture barking ferociously–he was a wolf hound mix. I almost got the varmint rifle down off the wall to shoot him the first time he came over to “play” thinking that he was trying to harm her. At that point she turned and chased him under the fence, and then turned and let him chase her again! She was also a great trail horse. Lovely Post. You brought back some nice memories. Begonia

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