Mr. Jones' excessive drinking causes many of the problems that occur on Manor Farm. Even the animals agreed that he was once a capable farmer, but a lost lawsuit had been the stimulus for him to drink all the more. Jones would lay about the house while his paid workers were idle and dishonest. Weeds took over the fields, hedges went untrimmed, buildings needed repair and, most importantly, the animals were underfed. Meanwhile, Old Major, Mr. Jones' prize Middle White boar, has a dream which he shares with the rest of the animals. In his dream, man has vanished and animals rule the world. Old Major suggests that the animals take over the farm and rule it in a way that Mr. Jones has failed to do.
One Midsummer's Eve, Jones went into town to get drunk and did not return till the next day. Although the cows were milked, the animals again went unfed. So, the animals broke down their stalls and helped themselves to their feed bins. When Jones and his men whipped the animals for this, the revolt of the animals began.