Wyebrook Dispatch

Tagging and Hoof rot

Stuck, Tagging and Hoof rot
Post by our Farm Girl Becca; Girl Gone Farming
It was bound to happen. Only a matter of time, really. Honestly, with my track record I’m amazed I made it this long. I got something stuck. But that is a story for another time.

It wasn’t all me. It was a joint effort really between Arden and myself. She was driving the Polaris, but I was navigating. The grass was so tall. Above my waist in places. We didn’t see the gully until it was too late. It was so muddy. We tried everything. Low gear. Four-wheel drive. But we just kept spinning tires.

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After our best efforts to get unstuck failed, I called Rob to come pull us out. He first tried to rescue us with the four wheeler, but that didn’t work. We were really stuck. So he returned with the tractor. The big tractor. The one that pulls the hay wagon, a.k.a The Hulk. That did the trick. We were saved and I’ll be baking Rob some oatmeal butterscotch cookies. Those are his favorite.


Rob to the rescue!


Saved by the Deere

We spent the better part of the afternoon trying to catch and tag calves. Cow 116 had a female baby yesterday and Ryan asked me if I felt comfortable tagging it by myself. I said I did and set off with the two Robs to build a fence and tag what would be calf 344. Turns out calf 344 is a wild child. Young calves sleep a lot so you can usually just sneak up on them and get them tagged before they know what is happening. Not 344. She was up and alert and wanted nothing to do with us. We chased her around for a good bit before deciding to try again later.

That was yesterday morning. This morning we went up with the same plan. Find her sleeping and sneak up on her. Well, we found her sleeping, but when I was about 10 feet away she jumped up and bucked and ran. So much for that plan. The first time Ryan tasked me with tagging a calf on my own I failed miserably. He ended up having to chase her down on the four wheeler and lasso her to get her tagged. That made me feel better. It wasn’t all incompetence on my part. She really was wild!

This afternoon we headed over to the heifers to treat two calves for hoof rot. Hoof rot is almost exactly what it sounds like: a bacterial infection that rots the foot, though it actually attacks the area between the “toes,” not the hoof itself. It is very contagious and can lead to lameness if left untreated. The telltale sign is limping. We treated the calves yesterday so today they were pretty skittish. We finally caught and treated one, but the other wouldn’t let us get close enough to rope her so we will try again tomorrow. Hoof rot spreads through the soil so I am hoping that a few warm days will dry out the ground and prevent the infection from spreading to others.

For those who have been wondering about Sir Fluffkin, he is doing well, though is minions are almost as big as him these days. He’s still with his friends up in the broiler house. I am hoping to move him down with the layers when we get the 500 new ones. Chicken-dog will have so many distractions that she shouldn’t single him out. Sadly, he is becoming increasingly less domesticated. He won’t let me pick him up and hold him like he used to. It’s my fault for not spending more time with him every day, but that’s just the way it goes.