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Watching Our Pet Population Get Decimated

It’s been a rough ten days for the animals at our homestead.

Despite a wonderful influx of dearly loved human companions coming to visit in recent weeks, we’ve dealt with far more than our fair share of animal-based disasters. Perhaps it’s only because we simply have more creatures in our lives than most people, but it still feels like what we’ve been dealing with recently is well beyond normal.

Don’t believe me?  I’ll list the total incidents we’ve dealt with and you can let me know if someone’s put a hex over our home or not.

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Our First Pig Slaughter

Well, we did it.

For those of you that harbored doubts about our ability to actually butcher our first pig, you can put those thoughts to rest.

This past weekend Ian, with the help of our pastor and professional butcher nephew along with a crew of middle school girls, humanely slaughtered Mr. Cris P. Bacon. After hours of effort we now have a full freezer of the freshest pork possible.

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Pets vs. Livestock: The Paradoxes of Farm Animal Ownership

For the past few weeks on our property we’ve had a chicken with a phlegmy, body-wracking cough and a chronically limping dog.

Poor Wendell has been on three different vet visits and undergone multiple x-rays of his stiff leg. Some were taken while he was unconscious from heavy-duty (and costly) anesthetics, all to see if he was a candidate for an eye-wateringly expensive reconstructive surgery to remove cartilage from his shoulder.

The chicken? She’s in the compost pile.

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Our Pallet Pig Pen: Best Tips for Success

Shipping pallets are a popular building material right now. Just look on Pinterest and you’ll see plenty of pallet crafts and DIY projects. With a little internet browsing, you can find everything from cute pallet coffee tables to fully functional kitchen shelves.

But a pallet pig pen? That’s probably the only pallet project capable of exciting Ian.

Surprisingly enough, Ian does occasionally venture into the visual world of Pinterest, and when he saw photos of pallet pig pens online there was no going back. For the past five months, he’s been scheming ways to acquire enough pallets to tackle this project, and a few weeks ago he made it a reality.

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A Guide to Meat Rabbits: A Sustainable Food Source

Confession time.

We’ve been eating rabbit. Lots of it.

Ian butchered our rabbits several weeks ago, and since then we have eaten them grilled, curried and  stewed. Every meal has been delicious so far and we even managed to serve some to our adventurous friends over Labor Day. I love the slightly gamey taste of our rabbits and the fact that each one is a perfect portion for two people. Our first livestock have been a complete success!

Butchering our first animals is a BIG DEAL. So why hasn’t it made it into this blog yet?

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