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How to Be a Real Farmer: Thoughts on Animal Husbandry

| 1/12/2012 10:26:21 AM

Christine Byrne head shotReal farmers know it is best not to anthropomorphize, in other words to assign human characteristics to the animals in their care. The animals are only livestock and should be treated as such; real farmers don’t need to put a lot of thought into animal behavior. Real farmers are able to go about their day uninterrupted and accomplish their tasks in an expedient manner. I am not a real farmer. I know this because when I come across certain scenes in the barnyard I have to stop, scratch my head and ponder what on earth is going on.


Do you suppose she is in time-out? Or maybe they were all playing hide and seek and she’s about to yell out, “Ready or not here I come!”

Real farmers don’t form unnatural relationships with their livestock. They don’t have a favorite hen that will sit in their lap to be petted and discuss religion, politics or relationships at great length. I consider it chicken therapy.

lap chicken


Real farmers never see their livestock as children. They don’t get involved in the interpersonal relationships; they only worry about things like providing food, water and healthcare. I, on the other hand, seem to get dragged into it often.   

Linda Leskovská
3/9/2013 4:50:50 AM

I LOVE this post. Made me laugh till I cried ( their expressions are priceless) and it gave me the warm and fuzzies to see that they are such wonderful non farmers out there :)

1/14/2012 1:45:40 AM

Christine, it is fun to make up stories about animal expressions, isn't it? I even do that with my truck. In fact he has his own blog. Have a great non real farming day.

1/12/2012 10:40:07 PM

Fantastic post. I guess I'm not a real farmer either. I have the same challenge/blessing when it co mes to my animals. I love the alpaca story!

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