Life has been quite an adjustment for us - since the arrivals of the new additions at our place. Flexibility is key. Sadly - it seems like the world around us becomes just as frustrated with the fact that - we now wear a dog leash - to an extent.
We can't go far. We're very limited to when we can go anywhere. Restricted to what time we must be back home. And whenever possible - one of us stays home while the other goes.
We knew it was part of the deal when we went into this new goal.
The most important task we have dealt with since the first week of this past October has been getting everybody situated enough to be happy. With cows - there's reasonable - and then there's that drawn line where changes are made as soon as somebody decides to become way too ugly - for way too long.
We've had a few situations. Flexibility sits on our side of the fence - and we win. Even as lately as - today. More on that one later.
Quite a bit has gone on around here since my last posting.
April and Killian were Dehorned. April's mending went very well.
Killian - on the other hand - had some issues. There was quite a hole left after the procedure. This hole led straight to the hallways of his nasal cavity - if you will.
We made a few temporary changes for him - to help with the healing process.
His hay was placed on the floor - instead of up in the wall manger or the hay bag. This kept small bits from falling into the hole and infecting his nasal cavity. He was placed inside his stall - or - allowed to roam the barn alley during the day - whenever we had really nasty weather.
Cold - wet - windy weather hitting his nasal cavity could have brought on infection - as well. Ever had a tooth cause you problems with hot and cold drinks? Imagine the same pain throughout your eyes - ears and nose.
Killian learned to stand still while we sprayed Ivermectin into his eyes and up into his nostrils - anytime we saw eye boogers and/or a runny nose from the hay and grasses we have up here.
He LOVES my recipe of hand-mixed beef developer with molasses. His treat for being a good boy! And now - all he has to do is see that little white bucket and he's following you around worse than the chickens!
But just when we thought it was safe enough...
The scab was hanging on to a few hairs. I had to cut it off.
He rubbed the scab off - yesterday. Luckily - things look wonderful! The hole is gone!
My Poor Baby!
He's already had a close call. Snagged it on the little 4' gate. Yanked the gate off the hinges. Flung it about 10 feet.
Thank God - Cora and Patty were so stunned that they just froze. Artist was busy licking his bleeding nose - long enough for me to sneak past - grab the gate and get back over to where it belongs. Got it back onto 1 hinge and tied at the bottom with a combo lead rope/halter - before anybody squared their bearings enough to see the open doorway.
All was fair and surviving - except the gate - which Dwayne fixed when he got home.
This is Patty.
We had Patty and Cora in one paddock with Artist. And we've gone round and round - with the round bales of hay. Object of the game - figure out which way they won't waste the hay and trash the place.
We haven't quite lost that one. We moved the hay ring out to the middle of the paddock. But we chained a cattle panel to the inside of half the ring. It minimizes waste just enough for what we use inside the barn.
We've had to keep a close eye on the three of them - all along. For whatever reason - mood swings have carried on to extremes - among each.
This is Cora.
To the heaviest extent - Cora was taking quite a shunning.
Both Patty and Cora come from a Brood Herd. Not quite that easy to walk up - put halters on them and lead them anywhere. In fact - it's impossible. We're able to feed treats. They'll take them from our hands. That's as close as it gets.
But Cora has been behaving as if she really wants to have a closer relationship with me. And she has taken punishment from both - Patty and Artist - on occasion.
Things began to take a drastic change a few days ago.
Manure balls began building up on Cora's tail and backside. That told me her bowels were loose. Everything we've accounted for inside that paddock tells us there's only 1 reason. Nerves. We've already gone through a few lists and ruled out everything else.
And I was not happy with some activity I had witnessed out of Artist during evening feedings - yesterday - with Cora. There is play - and there is aggression. And he was being downright ugly. He was T-boning her enough that she was stressing to hold her feet - until she headed for the back of the paddock.
This morning I went out to feed - and found the feeder bunker shoved all the way over toward our driveway - almost turned upside down at the gate. I moved the bunker over to a better spot and distributed their rations.
When I got back to the gate - Cora was right behind me. It was as if she could not care less if they ate her rations - if I'd just take her with me.
I've tried a couple times to con her into walking inside the barn. As soon as I'd see Artist coming - I'd close the door to the barn. But this morning - I got Dwayne out there with me. We kept April in her stall. Tied Killian outside in the little yard to eat his ration. I had Dwayne take Bruce's feeder bunker to the far side of his paddock and feed his ration to him.
I closed half the barn door at the far end - and opened up the barn door on the side where Cora was standing. She didn't even give it a second thought before walking inside the barn. I closed the door. She didn't even care that I stood right there.
I walked inside the house to get her another ration measure - adding molasses to encourage her to eat. Apparently - like Bruce - she does not like the rubber smell of those black flexible food bowls. She began trying to flip it - just like Bruce does.
I picked up the bucket to save the food and hid it inside the tack room. Took a lead rope to Dwayne and had him tie Bruce to a post long enough for me to get Patty into his paddock. Grabbed the bowl of feed out of the tack room - opened the barn door - opened the gate to the paddock and called to her. She follwed me right out there to the bunker.
Bruce came inside the barn to eat hay long enough for Cora to eat her ration - before we brought him back out to the paddock so they could get acquainted. Gave it a few minutes before bringing April out to the paddock with them.
And I've had goosebumps since!
Artist bawled a while. Now it's just him and Patty. Don't they make quite the couple?!
Karma. Just wait.
But it's like everybody has just mellowed out - all over the place! No fights! No trouble! Everybody's content!
Mama always wins!
April laying down here in front. Bruce laying down on the left. Cora standing and looking through the gate toward Artist and Patty.
This temporary winter arrangement just might work!