Pearl and Roxy were my first chickens, they were little ISA browns. Everything I know about chickens I learnt from them, but they taught me so much more than I ever expected. When one morning a fox tried to grab Roxy, Pearl, although far away, flew to defend her flock mate with such ferocity and bravery that Roxy escaped... sadly Pearl died from her injuries but not without us all being amazed at how brave and selfless this little chicken was. Annie was the worst horse I ever owned. Everything I know about horses I learnt from her. She came to us as an abused ex-racehorse with a very bad reputation. She had at one time or another every injury / illness known to man! I became an expert in doctoring horses because of her. She was also the horse with the worst temper and the most difficult to ride. Everything you did with her had to be precise and calm or she would freak out. She kicked, she sometimes bit, she reared, spun round, was horrible in traffic and downright moody in the stable. She eventually overcame her past and learnt to be loving and kind and accepting of humans once again. Every horse and rider I have trained since has benefited enormously because of the methods and understanding I had to learn to cope with her. This week as Roxy passed on to the big coop in the sky and Annie has to be put to sleep (spinal arthritis) I am incredibly sad at loosing my two best teachers. If you want to learn about bravery, patience, self-sacrifice and forgiveness then you could do a lot worse than be blessed with an ordinary brown hen and the worst horse on the yard.