Friday, August 14, 2009

Goodbye Sweet Sir Gallahad

On a farm, loss and death are inevitable, though for years we have gone without losing very many, and we tend to lose sight of this. This year though, there was still another loss to come. Sir Gallahad is a fine 13 year old alpaca we purchased from the Pacific Northwest some years ago. He was a half brother to one of our dear breeding females Queen Isabelle, and he is unquestionably a dear friend in his own right. Gallahad is a favorite because he is a gentle giant, and has always been a calm and loving creature. We have been aware for some time that Gallahad had a low level ongoing medical problem, and this was being watched and followed. In late July, Sir Gallahad did not look well. In the course of a day he did not eat, looked short of breath and did not move well. With hard work to feed him, medicate him, conversations with the vet, and even antibiotics, he began to improve a bit. I cautiously believed he might survive this particular illness. We even took him for walks while tethered, to different parts of the farm to keep his energy and mood up. At the end of July very quickly in the course of an hour, Gallahad deteriorated, and while I sat with him, he passed. In those last hours, I had called the vet to euthanize him to prevent any suffering, but she did not arrive in time, and he passed quickly anyway. Daniel now has many animals he knew over the years, our golden retriever Susan, his german shepherd Jake, two large white chickens, and now dear sweet Sir Gallahad. Gallahad also joins his sister who passed of a brain tumor a couple of years ago, and a niece alpaca named Shakria who died while a (young) cria. I hope they are all together and all happy. It has taken me two weeks to be able to write about this. I know that when we love, being parted and losing is inevitable, but we seem to have more of our share of this lately. Sir Gallahad received a farm funeral fitting for any royalty or head of state. Be sure to spend time with your beloved animals today.

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