Video & Blog: Do Animals Talk on Christmas Eve, The Donkey Cross, Veterinarian Writes Hit Song, Awkward Pet Pics!

In this special holiday episode:

1) Do animals kneel, face east, or talk at midnight on Christmas Eve? That's what my late grandmother told me when I was a child.
2) Do you know the story of the Donkey Cross?
3) Did you know a veterinarian wrote the holiday hit song, "Grandma Got Run Over by a Reindeer?" We tell the story. 
4) Awkward Pet Holiday Photos!

Howliday Episode: Do Animals Talk on Christmas Eve, The Story of the “Donkey Cross,” Veterinarian Writes Holiday Hit Song!

Do animals kneel, face east, or talk at midnight on Christmas Eve?

That's what my late grandmother told me when I was a child.

When I was a very young child growing up in southwest Georgia, my grandmother told me a tale about animals being able to talk at midnight on Christmas Eve. She took me and my cousins outside (well before midnight) to see the animals in the pasture. My grandmother told us a tale she had learned as a child: That on Christmas Eve, all of the farm animals face toward the east and kneel down at exactly midnight, when Jesus was born. She also told me that if you listen very carefully, you could hear the animals talking.

This is a myth that is common throughout much of Europe, especially northern Europe. I suspect she was taught this story from our Irish ancestors. I never made it up until midnight as a young child, but maybe you have. Have you seen any of these Christmas miracles with animals?

Do you know the story of the “Donkey Cross?”

Have you ever noticed that donkeys have a cross on their back? The story goes that because a small donkey carried Jesus into Jerusalem on what is known now as Palm Sunday, that God bestowed upon them the mark of Christ, and placed a cross on their back. This distinctive mark is known as the “donkey Cross” in many parts of the world to this day.

Did you know a veterinarian wrote the holiday hit song, "Grandma Got Run Over by a Reindeer?"

If it Christmas, it's time for the holiday hit song, “Grandma Got Run Over by a Reindeer.”

Did you know that song was actually written by a veterinarian? Dr. Elmo Shropshire, an Auburn University College of Veterinary Medicine graduate, wrote the song in 1979 with his ex-wife Patsy. It has been a perennial Christmas favorite ever since.

The story goes that Dr. Elmo made forty-five copies of this record as a joke to give to his friends. Somehow, a famous disc jockey named Gene Nelson got a hold of his record, and the rest is Christmas history.

Before you go out and try to write your own novelty Christmas hit to retire your student debt, keep in mind that Dr. Elmo reports he received only 44 cents in royalties in a recent year.

That’s it for a special holiday edition of Off Label Veterinary News. If you like content like this, be sure to subscribe on YouTube, Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram. Until next time, Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!

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