Thursday, May 28, 2009

Poop and Our Place In the Universe

My husband was sick today, so I did the morning manure pickup. Gus the horse produces a lot of it, in his stall and in carefully selected venues around the pasture. Since we don't want it or the water that runs off through it to go into the pond, we pick it up daily.

As I set off with the wheelbarrow and manure container, I started wondering what the animals think of all this.

Of course, the first thing they think is: "Does she have food?" The goats carefully inspected the equipment and me for food. Look who else is waiting in the background.

The poop producer himself, hoping I'm bringing hay or grain.

And here's the chore awaiting me, and the guilty party.

So here's something I've always wondered about. If you collect the poop of another species, be it dog, cat or horse, can you really be considered the dominant species? I feed my cats, pick up their poop, and work so that they can have a warm place to sleep. Who's really on the top of that food chain?

On the other hand, we don't collect the goats' poop, because it's small and will just biodegrade, and I'm still pretty sure they think we work for them, so maybe that theory doesn't hold.

Goats can't control their poop, which leads to situations like this...

That's our boat dock, where they love to sleep and hang out on hot days. We can't just close the gate to it to keep them off, because they just climb into the boat and jump up to the dock. We just sweep it off regularly.

Wait, that's collecting their poop, isn't it? And we're feeding them and providing a place to sleep. Drat -- we really are low man on the totem pole here, aren't we?

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