As the Times of India reports, a trio of local Gujarat farmers are now facing massive fines and potential jail time. And it’s all thanks to their domestic buffalo. Or, the veterinarians who see to them, at least.
While we have bison here in North America, India hosts true buffalo. Several species serve as everything from livestock to beasts of burden in the country, and have for thousands of years. Famer Dinesh Thakor knew what to expect from his buffalo as a result.
So when Thakor noticed his buffalo were acting beyond strange this July, he knew to call in a vet. Times of India states that “The animals had stopped eating and were frothing at the mouth. Their behavior was not normal…”
For the vet’s first visit, the buffalo would all be found to be in good health, despite these odd symptoms. Nothing was “wrong,” per se. Yet their behavior would continue into the next day. Thakor then called for a second opinion – as something was clearly amiss. This would turn out to be a huge mistake.
This second vet took a far more thorough look at the buffalo’s living conditions, as any animal tech worth their salt will! There, they found “strange smells” and “yellow” water coming from one of the livestock troughs. Thakor attempted to pass it off as “branches” tainting the water, but the vet knew better.
Vet Tech Uncovers Bootlegging Operation via Drunk Buffalo
After exiting the farm, this second veterinarian went to the local police to report Thakor and his colleagues. The smell coming from the buffalo and their troughs was unmistakable: alcohol. Lots of alcohol.
In short: Thakor’s buffalo were drunk. Smashed, even.
“The animals probably drank the water laced with liquor from damaged liquor bottles. The bovines reportedly recovered from the symptoms by Sunday,” local authorities state.
As for the farmers, which include Thakor and at least one brother, “The complaint filed by LCB assistant sub-inspector Dilipsinh Baldev with the Chiloda police station on Sunday states that 101 bottles of IMFL worth $35,000 [in local currency] were seized from the stable,” Times of India concludes.
By July 7, three farmers were brought into custody. Each faces large fines with the potential of prison time for their illegal bootlegging operation.
For a bit more context – it takes a lot (and we mean a lot) of liquor to get a true buffalo to the point of intoxication. The average size for a water buffalo species is anywhere from 800 to 1,200 pounds. The giant bovines can also reach 9 feet in length. One can only imagine the consequences of being around a recklessly sloshy buffalo, too.
Lesson learned? Lesson learned.