Tuesday, November 23, 2010
This year has definitely been a year of learning. We have had to make some tough decisions, the latest being slaughtering one of our milk cows. We had gotten this particular cow at the beginning of this year. In March she had a beautiful calf, and after waiting a few months Chuck started milking her. She was difficult, she had never been milked as this was her first lactation, and she had rather small teats. With the other first time milk cows that we had Chuck had some difficulty at first as the were learning and he was learning, but this cow was different. Sometimes she would decide she did not even want to come into the barn, then if he did get her in she would not want to keep her head in the head gate. Chuck had to rig up a system where he attached a rope to the lever on the head gate that made it close, he would then have to walk all the way around the barn where the rope would be hanging out a window, wait for her to think he was gone and then he could pull the rope, close the head gate and she was stuck. Then he could think about milking her, that is if she did not step in the bucket or knock it over. Even when he did milk her she would not let down all of her milk so we were not getting much. When she would come into the barn she seemed so nervous about something she really would leave quite a mess behind, getting poop on all the freezers, and really whatever else was within that area. Cleaning up from her was a job, and we would have delt with it if she hadn't started to kick Chuck. It happened just a few times but if she would have ever seriously hurt Chuck we would be really stuck. So the last time she kicked at Chuck was the last time for her. We decided to have her ground into beef and make whatever money we could from her. We did sell all the beef within 4 hours, which was quite a record for us, and she does taste good. I just wish we had milk. Right now we are waiting for one of our 2 other milk cows to calve. Being without milk is horrible, but I guess being without my husband because he was kicked by a cow would be much worse:)
I also thought I would give an update on Ben. He was doing so well when I brought him in for a check up just a few days after his surgery. Then over the weekend he started to decline. The issue is with a cut like he has sometimes the skin does not reattach itself, the top layer dies off. We were really hoping that that would not happen, but it seems that is just what is happening. It is a rather large area and we are not sure if there is enough skin to do another surgery, but the vet wants to try, so tomorrow Ben goes back in for a check up and to see what they can do. Below is a picture of him without any dressing on, you can see where the skin is pulling away from the stitches. You can also see the drains that were put in, they have removed those now. I really hope that this is the last major thing that happens to Ben, I think that this has really put him over the edge. He is being so good though, letting me clean his wound, eating, drinking and taking his medication. Thanks for all the good wishes, we will keep our fingers crossed.