Tuesday Morning, around 5:30 AM, we were in the house drinking coffee when I heard a horn honking outside. I went to the door and found our neighbor, Jay Green, who said “Wild dogs are killing your hogs”. I yelled to Carl, “Get your gun wild dogs are killing our pigs.”. Carl grabbed his glasses and gun and went out the field, which is a bit from the house and Jay had to drive him because our truck was at the barn, then Carl took a couple shots at the dogs but unfortunately missed. Poor Peter is pretty badly hurt but he is hanging in there and has more energy today than the day he was attacked. Peter is the smartest pig and the one who leads the others around so we think Peter might have been protecting his buddies. (Thank goodness pigs have a LOUD SQUEAL and our neighbor heard them from his house!)
The next day, Carl described the dogs to Dean, who lives up in the holler, and Dean assured us that they are Danny Keeners dogs.
A few years ago, David who is part owner of land in the holler and visits on weekends staying in his camper, found a bear dog named Princess who had been missing after running a bear. David called Princess’ owner and while the owner was on his way to get Princess a couple wild dogs appeared out of the woods and in just a couple minutes those dogs skinned Princess alive. So David called Animal Control, after having seen the dogs, and animal control found the dogs at Danny Keeners place. Danny just lives across the road and up the mountain a bit. Animal Control fined Danny for the cost of Princess and gave him two weeks to “contain” his 25 dogs. (Danny does not neuter his dogs. I guess they just keep breeding with each other.) Animal Control never enforced the “containment” requirement and to this day Danny’s dogs still run wild.
After the incident with Princess, Wilson, who lives in the holler above Dean, found the dogs in Dean’s chicken coop attacking the chickens, so shot at the dog and injured it. Once again, Animal Control was notified, then Animal Control confronted Danny who denied it was his dogs. I don’t think Danny ever compensated Dean for the chickens.
Our neighbor Angela’s son Tyler also had a dog attacked and killed by Danny’s dogs. Ken and Mary had a dog attacked and killed by Danny’s dogs.
The Frisbee boy, who has some bear dogs on run lines, had one of his dogs dragged up the creek and killed probably by these same dogs.
Etta, Alvins sister who lives next to us, had a dog that was attacked and killed while another of her dogs escaped and returned home a few days after the attack mangled and kind of looking like Peter.
Shortly after the situation with Princess, we had a border collie named Lucky, who we had for 9 years and who suddenly disappeared into the woods never to return. We are not sure what ever happened to Lucky but we have suspicions that it was these same dogs. In addition, we had a plott hound dog for a couple years who disappeared around the same time as Lucky. We assume the hound dog was also attacked by these same dogs.
This week Carl has not been getting any sleep because he has been staying out until 10 PM, then getting up at 3 AM, trying to protect the pigs from these wild dogs. What do we do about the pigs? It is such an investment in purchasing the pigs, feeding them, watering them, only to have them destroyed by wild dogs. So we are not sure if we should take the pigs to the butcher before the dogs return or just hope we can shoot the dogs before they kill the pigs.
These dogs are smart and have been shot at multiple times so they are survivors and I am not sure of our chances at catching them. Carl can’t physically stay out each night waiting for the dogs to return because farming is hard work and he needs his sleep!
What to do…. Do we take the pigs to market, keep the pigs and hope the dogs don’t return or keep the pigs and hope we shoot the dogs?