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Home Alone resident protects his Swan Lake

by Jimmy Rhatigan

When ace snapper Donal Foley and his four-legged friend Ben explored the great outdoors within the confines of South Kilkenny they had hardly bargained for a confrontation with a stubborn swan.
Yes, you read it right, the pair, Donal, aged 21 + VAT and six-year old Jack Russell buddy, an avid hurling fan, eventually had to scamper for their wellbeing, on a wing and a prayer perhaps.
Observing the health and safety 5km travel rule, man and dog took their six legs to what is colloquially the Seán na mBan Lough at Kyleva near the Foley family residence in Hugginstown.
No doubt they were happy that the swan in residence was out for a swim when they arrived.
But the mood on a sun-kissed afternoon soon changed.
Swannie wasn’t about to put out the mat of welcome for any visitors.
Donal set about taking a few shots of the Swan Lake hero, but there was no way the swan was going to trumpet the magic word ‘cheese’.

Ben the Jack Russell protected his buddy Donal.
Pic by Donal Foley

Rather the snow white beauty appeared to be cheesed off and was determined to leave his mark on our Donal.
To Donal’s rescue dashed Ben, barking and kind of squaring up to the swan that was in no danger but certainly showed lots of courage and determination as he was determined to protect the picturesque water patch where he was home alone.
Donal and Ben decided that the best means of attack was to retreat about their business and perhaps to return another day when the swan might be in better form.
With shots of the swan in his camera, Donal was happy to ramble on with Ben, a hero of the animal kingdom, to take a series of pretty pictures for Kilkenny Press where he is a member of our volunteer team.

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