Feeding Dead Animals
Since there seem to be several questions concerning feeding
dead livestock to Guardian Dogs, we would like to present a coherent
discussion of our views on the subject. First, and most importantly,
feeding dead livestock to guardians does NOT teach Guardians to kill
livestock. If this were not the case, there would undoubtedly be no sheep
and goats in the world today as they would have disappeared sometime in
prehistory. The fact that many, many modern shepherds and goatherds,
including us, continue the practice of feeding dead livestock to Guardian Dogs
with no incidents of Guardians going on a killing rampage seems to provide
adequate proof for our first statement.
The financial benefits of using the carcasses of our
valuable stock in one last economically effective way should be clear to anyone
who has ever purchased dog food. Other disposal methods with the exception
of composting provide no benefits and, in fact, carry a price tag in one or more
of the following areas: lost of your time, wear and tear on equipment such
as a backhoe, extra use of various fuels, environmental pollution, and the
increased presence of predators. Composting dead animals does provide some
benefit, but is much more involved (to control odor, health risks and vermin)
than composting straight vegetable matter.
Economics aside, although some owners of pet livestock have
expressed intense outrage at this concept, others believe that it is a final
honor to their pets for them to provide one last benefit to their
Although dogs may kill and or eat various species of
encroaching wildlife, we have become aware that there is a not-too-common
parasite that may possibly be spread when your dog eats freshly killed dead
animals of any species. The parasite is called a sarcocyst and cannot
survive extreme heat or cold. As raw meat and innards are more beneficial
to dogs than cooked meat and raw bones are less dangerous to dogs than cooked ones,
we freeze dead stock before feeding it.
For those of you interested in this practice, we were able
to purchase in August 2005 a 5 cubic foot freezer at WalMart for $136.
Dan & Paula Lane
Copyright © 2005 [Bountiful Farm]. All rights reserved.