Friday, January 28, 2011

Farming can be a real pain in the butt…..literally

Seriously, this morning at about 5, I dressed for work and made bottles for the calves.  As I started to step onto the first step off the frost covered deck.  My feet flew out from under me and I landed on my booty.  When I hit my left arm had a quick pain then I felt nothing in it.  My lower back near the booty was seriously hurting and I could not get up.  Luckily I was ready for work so my electronic leash phone was on me.  I called Jen and asked her to come help.  She was kind enough to help me get up, without even the slightest laugh.  She found me some Aleve while I fed the calves, looked at the swelling on my arm and even offered to take me to the doctor.

After I left for work much to my chagrin; Jen and the kids had a GREAT laugh at my expense.

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

My bottle calves are udderly confused.

When a calf is on the teat, if the milk is not flowing as fast as they want or not flowing at all, they will push into the udder.  This will cause the udder to release milk.  This is also true with the bottle which normally means the nipple opening needs to be cut open a little.
Well today I went to feed the animals with the exception of the calves.  It was not time for them to eat, I usually feed and water everything before making their bottles.  Then I will feed them a bottle in each hand sort of resting on my leg in case they push into the bottle it will not knock it out of my hand.  164300_1542158594919_1263573162_31184531_2746421_n
This hold allows for the bottle to be knocked out of the hand when they nudge for more milk.
A more secure hold for the bottle, as it pushes into the body.
Brad and I feeding.
When I walked in the fence both calves came running over to me, I did NOT have bottles in hand.  The larger of the two calves was walking in circles around me when the the smaller one ran his nose into the back of my left thigh and began nudging, repeatedly.  
I believe he is udderly confused.

Monday, January 24, 2011

How much veterinary work should we do on our on?

DISCLAIMER:  While there are no gross photos in this post there is a gross description of a surgery conducted by Brad and me.
I have always given my dogs their vaccinations.   These are subcutaneous shots: just under the skin.  Like the shots we get in the arm.
Recently I bought a cow, that I later determined was sick when purchased,  I learn how to give intramuscular shots, like the shots we get in the hip.  In an animal you plan to eat these go in the neck muscle.
In the last two years of raising chickens, I have had to somewhat learn to be a chicken vet.  When we had many little chicks and their legs were banded for identification, there was one who missed getting a band changed and the leg grew around the band.  Brad and i removed the band, and doctored the leg until it had fully recovered. 
When Lilly was attacked by a dog she had a serious cut on her back.  Again my faithful assistant accompanied me with a in depth wound cleaning and regular treatments until she had fully recovered.
Well this past we we were at it again.  The girls were feeding my dog when they let Duke out without my knowledge.  After returning home from church, I went to check on my grandparents and Brad found we had an injured chicken and one missing.  When I returned home, I found Brad setting in my recliner holding the injured chicken.  He told me it was bad and he did not know if she would make it.  When I saw the problem, I considered euthanasia, because he was right.  But it was worth a shot…..Right?
She had a busted crop:
The “crop” is the pouch in the digestive tract where food is ground by rocks for digestion. 
We went to my parents house where we could work in the garage, because this could get messy, I have new hardwood in my kitchen, and besides it was in the low 30s outside. 
Brad helped me by taking care of the chicken until I could get all my supplies together.  Then we began; the crop had to be cleaned out (this is like a person having their stomach pumped).  Once the crop was cleaned, we had to suture the crop to allow her (hopefully) to be able to eat in the future.  After about 6 stitches in the crop, there were only a couple of stitches in the outer skin because she needs a place for drainage to prevent infection.  We placed her in a cardboard cat carrier with some bedding, she spent the night in the laundry room.  The following morning Brad put her in the bus stop with the large animals to keep the roosters off of her.  When I came home from work that afternoon she had flown out of the fence, when into the coop and laid a beautiful green egg, she appeared to be eating fine.  We are now ready to remove the outer stitches however the internal stitches will have to stay.  Unfortunately they are not the dissolvable type as I have limited veterinary supplies to work with. 
grey 3

Friday, January 21, 2011

OOPS!... I DID IT AGAIN! Britney Spears

As you may well know in early December I tried my hand at a Bottle fed Charolais and it did not end well.  Jen and I had decided a couple of things; 1) Wait until Spring 2) Buy in pairs.  Well this week she was on Craigslist and found me some Holstein calves.   Well we did half of our plan; I bought a pair.  Let’s just hope I can keep these healthy.
Brad opening the trailer door.  This little fellow is really good help.
Brad keeping an eye on one while I took one to the stall.
The larger of the two.
Starting to get comfy.
They found the water.
The smaller one.
Romeo walking off shaking his head…I believe he was thinking “Bulls, BULLS…How about a Nanny”

Thursday, January 20, 2011

New Addition

I have a really cool looking rooster (Mr. Darcy), I bought him over the summer, along with a hen which  was killed by a raccoon earlier in the fall.  He is of one of the smallest bantam breeds; Japanese Black Tail Bantam.  These come in a variety of color but I prefer the white because the black tail really stands out.   Poor fellow is so small he can not breed with any of my other bantams.
Mr. Darcy on the inside roost.

After searching Craigslist, I finally found him some company of the same breed. 

jap bantams

While I was gone to pick them up, I asked Jen to run by the co-op and pick up a new feeder.  However I learned a very valuable lesson when I brought these home.  Expect the unexpected when you send a “city girl” to pick up farm supplies.


Tuesday, January 18, 2011

Wacky Wednesday!

If a cow laughs, will milk come out it’s nose?

Saturday, January 15, 2011

Why did the chicken cross the road?

I have know idea but I can tell you why they stayed inside for three days despite the fact that I would open their coop.  Well lets open their door and see.

They HATE the snow.

Look the outside roost has not a single chicken foot print.