Friday, October 16, 2009

Herd Health Day

We have been busy at Orange Patch Dairy today. We welcomed yet another bull calf to our farm. We have been birthing about 2 bulls calves to every 1 heifer calf. These calves will end up at our neighbor's farm where they will be raised to be beef animals. We had to move the new mother to the new barn as well. After taking care of baby and mother, we had our monthly scheduled visit with our herd vet.

We call this day "Herd Health Day". Our vet worked today to do post-calving check ups on all of the cows that have had babies (calves) in the last month. We had 15 cows to check. We had an awesome result, as all cows are of excellent health. These cows were also vaccinated for various cow-diseases, much like how we vaccinate humans for human diseases. We also did pregnancy checks for those cows that we bred 35 days ago. We checked 7 cows and 4 of them were pregnant. The remaining 3 that are not pregnant will be watched in the coming weeks for estrus (heat) and bred again. Try, try again...we want all of our cows to have calves and continue their lactations. After checking over the cows we moved to the calf barn.

Here we vaccinated our calves with a vaccine that is similar to what the cows got, for the same disease. We work hard to give booster vaccines to all animals on our farm to make sure that our cows are healthy and not sick. Sick cows reduce milk production which reduces our income, but it also costs money to buy drugs to treat them, therefore it is ALWAYS in our BEST interests to have HEALTHY cows! In fact today at the age of 4.5 months, we vaccinated Joey, the calf from our spring day care visits.

After vaccinating the calves we did follow up checks on animals that had surgery in the last few weeks. All in all, it was a great day on the farm-with healthy and happy cows on Orange Patch Dairy!

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I write this blog to share my passion for my cows and farming, please be respectful of that. I reserve the right to delete those comments which portray hate, call names, and are out right disrespectful. If you have an honest question, I will respond, to explain what we do on our farm, why we do it and how we do it. Please read with an open mind. My time to blog is short, as most of our days are spent caring for our beloved cows. Thank you!