Sunday, December 4, 2011

A tearful day

Most days are good days but today hasn't been one of them.
The day started of with  a bit of a lay in.  I didn't get up until 8:30 am.  I got ready to leave George Island last night so I didn't have much to do at all today.  In fact mum, Tanya and I were all cleaned up ready to go before Christopher was quite ready.
It has been another beautiful, sunny, windless day.  I was the last person at the house.  I was sitting on the step waiting for Christopher when he asked me to run him up to the airstrip in the Mitsubishi to collect his motorbike to take on the boat.  The dogs came for a run.  On the way back I had to stop and shut a gate to keep the sheep off the house green.  I shut the gate and was trundling along in 2nd low range.  I slipped the vehicle into 3rd and heard this horrible cry, it wasn't a bark, then I heard it again, I knew what it was.  Even before I looked in my side mirror I knew I had run one of the dogs over.  In the mirror I could see a dog obviously in pain pulling itself around on the ground.  It turned out to be Shaun's 11 month old bitch Bex.  She was obviously hurt and scared, she couldn't get up and  I was just hoping that I hadn't broke her back.  Christopher saw me out of the vehicle and came over but it was impossible to tell what was wrong.  All indications were something was broken in her hind quarters.  Christopher lifted her into the vehicle.  She didn't appear to have any injuries to the stomach, lungs etc.  We decided to take her to Speedwell and then see if we could get a plane to call in if there was one in the area.  Tanya rang through to FIGAS and there was a plane just leaving Sealion Island which is only 15 minutes away from us.  We decided to wait at George Island for the plane.  Tanya had to fly in with Bex because dogs can't travel in the aircraft without being in a dog crate.  Exceptions are made when obviously the animal is hurt and is not likely to be jumping around but they still have to have someone with them to control them if they do become unexpectedly mobile.  Shaun said by the time the plane landed  which would be close to an hour after I ran her over she was actually able to walk but she was limping.  She is now in Stanley and has seen the vet but by then she was in a lot of pain and is now flat out again.  The vet thinks she has a broken pelvis but because the vet department does not  own  an x-ray machine she can not be x-rayed until tomorrow.  Tomorrow she will go down to the hospital to be x-rayed.  She is now at home in Stanley and has had some pain relief.  Tomorrow we will get a prognosis and hopefully she will be able to have an operation to mend any damage.
In over 20 years farming this is the first time I have run over one of our dogs.  I never even seen her.  Christopher had been trimming the young dogs up because they had started rushing in and biting at the tyres.  It is like a game of dare and a lot of the young dogs seem to go through this stage.  They didn't  appear to be doing it today but obviously Bex decided she would.  I think she must have rushed into the back wheel just as  I changed gear and she got caught with the acceleration in speed.  I was only trundling along probably doing no more then 10 to 15 miles per hour.
Even though all our dogs are working dogs they are all also pets.  Bex is one of Elle's pups so we have had her and her sister Heart since the day they were born.  They spent the first 3 weeks of their lives living in the back porch with Elle.  So as you can see today hasn't been a good day for me.  Lets hope tomorrow brings some good news.  I know it wasn't my fault. I was only driving slow but it doesn't stop you feeling guilty.

1 comment:

  1. What a dreadful experience for you and the dog.
    I hope everything works out the best for all concerned.

    I ran over a cow once with my 150 horse powered tractor. Carrying a large round bale of hay on the front of the loader obstructs your view. Moving slowly the cows normally will move out of the way. Apparently, one was slow getting up and I ran of it first with the front tires and then the back. At first I thought I had run over a rock.

    I felt aweful. Since I do not own a gun I had to get a friend to come and put down the cow.

    I have some appreciation of how you feel. Even working dogs are family pets.