Posted by: kathandroger | January 28, 2014

Bye Bye Donkey.

I spent some time with him and the other sheep yesterday. It was a lovely morning, and having finished the awful job of pruning the blackthorn hedge (another big splinter came out of my hand last night!), I sat on a boulder in the upper pasture and just watched the view and enjoyed the company. Boudie, of course, was there, and we were joined by Dennis the cat and Moins Dix the goat. Donkey got his name because at birth he was the most ugly lamb, with long ears and a sad expression. He grew out of that over the past year and changed into a rather handsome smaller version of his father, Hercules. But although we could do with a few more beasts to keep the pasture down, two males ( on reflection I should have castrated him in his infancy), was one too many and he was for the pot. I thought long and hard as to whether I could become a vegetarian. I don’t like killing animals, but if I am going to eat meat, I feel I should feel some responsibility for their demise, and not pretend they come out of thin air into the butcher’s shop. So there it was. We captured him last evening; easily done because all the sheep are quite tame, and endured his endless, frightened bleating when he was enclosed in the wood store. This morning a friend of a friend arrived and did the deed. The butcher is a charming man, now retired, but available to aid his friends, and I respect nothing more than an expert with years of experience. The technical aspect of butchering also fascinated me, and really isn’t too much different from my old trade of part time surgeon. In no time the Donkey ceased to be that affectionate animal whose head I used to stroke and became various varieties of offal and a swinging bare torso in the equipment store, ready to be finally butchered tomorrow. His stomach contents are on the compost heap and his blood in nourishing several trees. His companions didn’t seem to miss him at all, a reaction reflected to me by the size of the sheep’s brain, but it is strange and daft how we imagine human emotions are similar in animals. We will consume
his liver today, thank him for his donation to our lives, and I shall again ponder the question of meat eating.IMG_2468


  1. Bravely done. If one eats meat, one has to face the consequences. I bet he’ll taste excellent. Welsh lamb is best though.

  2. “His frightened bleating” is the hard part I think.
    Compared with how most animals meet their end this was probably very kind and civilised.

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