We watched the Superbowl last evening. I’m not an ace where football strategy is concerned, but I enjoyed the game. I’m still wondering what I thought of the halftime show…
And here we are, the Monday-night-after. Our Paint gelding, ‘Ruger Jac’, didn’t want to throw his weight around amongst the girls when it was time for dinner this evening- a sure sign he wasn’t feeling well. He had to be convinced to take his rations and convinced to come into the barn. The girls tired of waiting for him, so they motored past to get to the hay.
I called in my reinforcements to help me complete the chores. Jim & Char came out to help finish filling water buckets and then Char and I observed and inspected Ruger’s locomotion. The ground is so darn hard and frozen everywhere that it’s tough to get a read on his gait and what exactly is going on. There are ice-filled depressions in the footing around the barn and in the pasture so that moving evenly over the terrain is tricky. We are sure he is in discomfort because of his tentative behavior and so we filled a stall full of shavings for him, loaded him up with rations and treated him with a dose of Bute as an anti-inflammatory for the night.
In the morning we’ll spend more time trying to assess what’s up, calling the vet if necessary.
I hope he’s right as rain tomorrow -it breaks my heart when my kids and my animals don’t feel well.
Char had a pile of homework to attend to so Jim helped me with sheep-wrassling and we de-wormed the flock before I move them into new pasture in a couple of days. This is our attempt to keep the flocks parasite-load down and to rotate pastures, allowing the freezing winter temps to kill any shed worms. This is a way to minimize grazing in infested pastures.
I was able to do some exams on the ewes, too, to see who was approximately how far along and I think that the race is on between Ruva & Maggie for who will lamb first. Fat bellies on those girls! I’m so excited for lambs!
Last, but not least, I had Jim assist me with the dark-of-night covert chicken-wrangling. We ferried fat hens from one coop to the other so as to empty the smaller coop, readying it for a new purpose. Then, from the large coop, we retrieved the Faverolle Rooster, ‘Almonzo’, and his girls to the Love Shack. We’ve got an order for Faverolle chicks to fill this spring and in order to ensure that the eggs we hatch out are purebred, it was time to sequester the micro-flock to their own quarters.
I’m not showing favoritism to the Faverolles, it’s just that there is this special request. However, they are a delightfully tempered, beautiful and hardy breed so it will be fun to have more of them this year.
Join me in praying that they’re not all roosters when they hatch…