Saturday, February 25, 2012

Family Bonding Time

What better to do on a Saturday afternoon but have a little family bonding time.  JM and I didn't have anything on the agenda for the afternoon so Roger came up with a little family activity.  Just the 3 of us and 200 members of our farm family..............working cattle was on his agenda.  We figured no big deal, it would just take a couple of hours.  And.....just when you plan for things to be simple..........they are simply NOT.    Usually when you open the gate to let the cattle out of the pen, they do just that - run for new and exciting territory.  However, these particular cattle have become attached to each other and their pen.  They had no intention of leaving their space.  We yelled.....and chased....and chased.....and yelled with not much luck at all.  It took us over an hour to get 200 head of cattle out of their pen and into the holding area to work them.  Phew!!!  Boy were we tired.  And since it was only about 20 degrees today and the wind was blowing, we were dressed for the occasion and were carrying around about what seemed like 20lbs of clothing.  Good exercise program!!

Now that we had the kids in place and ready to go, we headed over to the chute to get started.  Sounds simple.......but, of course, since it took so long to get them out of the pen, our syringes had frozen up.  So....we had to get them thawed out.  What else could go wrong???  Actually, several things could and did still go wrong, but eventually we got started and made it all the way through.  It was kind of fun to see them all go through the chute.  We have a scale on our chute as well, and some of the fellows have gotten to be quite large already.  If they keep this up, we may be selling them earlier than expected. 

This group of cattle is actually quite tame which is the main reason that they had no interest in moving away from where we were today.  Luckily Jacob stopped by today to give us a hand.  It sure was nice having an extra person help to keep them moving through the chute. 

The cattle received two different vaccinations today to keep them healthy.  They need their vaccinations just like our kids do to keep disease away.  They also received a topical treatment for worms and other parasites.

JM helping at the chute.

After everyone was treated and returned to their home, we loaded the feeder wagon and got them their supper.  They are always happy to see the feeder wagon line up to the bunks.  Our little 2 hour adventure ended up taking us a little over 4 hours, but it was good time spent as a family.  We all enjoyed what we were doing so I guess it doesn't matter what the activity is as long as we are together.