Ghana is full of animals and smaller hairy, crawly, slithery types of things. Granted so is the UK but here you seem to notice it a whole lot more. Perhaps because they roam freely. Chickens, goats, sheep, cows, dogs and cats, you name it they are seen wandering around, just like us. They are also actually quite good at crossing the road and finding their way home!
Let’s just start with in our house though – or at least those of which we invited to be here. We have three dogs, two cats and five chickens. We used to have four dogs (over time five if you count our first one), six chickens, no cats, two sheep, two tortoises (twice!) and a cockerel.
The only animal I wish was still here is our dog that we brought from the UK. He was lovely but sadly succumbed to a Ghanaian illness some time ago now. Of the other animals; the sheep died, one puppy died, a chicken died as did the cockerel (thank goodness from a noise point of view!) and the tortoises ran away – they can actually move pretty fast when they want! We did once have a number of ‘free range’ chickens but they seemed to go missing one at a time, no doubt into someones pot. Although they are pretty tough old birds and having tried a ‘layer’ wouldn’t eat one again.
Our dogs (Roley, Scamp & Socks) are all Ghanaian dogs which make them a bit more resilient to the environment. They are also a little bit ageist and racist. They like chasing little Ghanaian children…. not good. We also have no front gate at the moment as they are making a new one and have only now done the pillars so the dogs are having a field day running after anyone that walks past and doesn’t smell right. Having said that they were pretty useless when we had an intruder in the house.
Whenever we walk out in the evening either for a drink or food the dogs follow us protecting us all the way.
I must admit though I do get stressed a bit over them coming with us, but it’s impossible to keep them back, they seem to ‘know’ when we are going and will race ahead so I can’t find them to try and at least shut one in the house. I have been known to go half way down the track to collect them and carry them back to the house.
Our usual route to ‘Seatop’ or ‘Elimax’ – two of our main haunts takes us past a house with seven dogs and currently 12 puppies. This is the most stressful part of the walk. The owners have tried to fence their dogs in, but a bit of bamboo fencing is no match for the desperation of their dogs to show our dogs whose territory they are walking past. I’ve been walking that way, stopped to chat to a friend and suddenly seen SN2 surrounded by all the dogs as one of ours was trying to protect him. Thing is they are actually cowards and I’m not afraid of the dogs attacking us…..yet.
The latest addition to our pack is ‘Socks’, as named by the children. Her brother ‘Bear’ sadly died soon after we got them. A tough lesson for the older children, the younger ones didn’t really understand. Anyway she is now of puppy producing age and we have no idea if we are about to become like the house down the road. I sincerely hope not. The kids on the other hand would love it.
They are great dogs though and I do love having them around especially if Aubrey is away for a night. I also love the fact that they don’t need walking, are free to roam but stick close to the house and make me feel safe if I am walking in the dark. One will always go ahead and another behind. Like guardian angels!
I think that’s enough for this post, perhaps I’ll delight you with all those creatures that have not been officially invited to stay another time!
Son Number 3 and Socks do some bonding……