It’s a little known fact that I am a huge animal gal. I once had to stop volunteering at a cat shelter because I kept bringing them home with me. I was excited when I found out there were sheep and goats already on the farm and that the idea was to breed the sheep at the end of the summer/early fall and this spring we will be diving into the world of raising chickens. But not all animals are welcome on the farm and they’ve put a lot of efforts to keep predators from getting through the 8 foot tall fence that surrounds the perimeter of the property.
The other day as I was bringing David his sunglasses while he was on tracker I noticed that he was standing on the wheel looking to the south corner of the property. He yelled at me that there was a coyote lose in the vineyard. Somehow this big guy got in, probably slipping under the fence somewhere near the gate. David yelled for me to go open the gate as it’s kept closed during the spring and summer months for this reason alone. If luck would have it, they were going to try to push the coyote back out without having to do any harm. All of a sudden I remembered that I had just let my cats out to roam in the yard. Momentarily panicked, I felt caught in between a rock and a hard place. Do I open the gate first which required me running a good football field length or run back to get my cats into the house in order to prevent them from being the coyote’s lunch ? The realization set in that I am now a farm girl and my priorities must change, not to mention that my cats were sitting under a bush about five feet from the front door to the house. I ran to open the gate as fear set in that somehow, just maybe the coyote would manage to smell the fresh meat of my poor defenseless kitties and get to them in the five minutes it took for me to open the entrance of the fence and get back to save their lives. Dramatic? Well, maybe just a little but you have to understand, these were city cats for the last four years and they are rather naive to the ways of the farm cat. Knowing Lucy she’d probably see the Coyote and run to it, roll over and let the him have his way with her.
As I was dashing back towards the house David yelled out that they were going to have to shoot the coyote because he was working his way further into the vineyard. I skidded to a halt. WHAT? Shoot the poor defenseless coyote who probably has a family of its own. I mean, it’s really only trying to provide for its young and who are we to get in the way? I’m assuming David could see the sadness in my eyes and reminded me that my cats were still out. A rush of reality came back to me and I pivoted in my tracks running to gather Lucy and Oliver.
I waited for the sound of the rifle from inside the house but it never came. Although I know that having a coyote loose on the property reeks havoc for obvious reasons, I can’t help that a little part of me is relieved that I never heard the sound of the gun. Maybe he found his way out after all? I wonder if I’ll ever get use to this part of life on a farm?