Words I never thought I’d hear: “When you’re done, could you go lasso that sheep and treat her pink eye for me?” Yet that is exactly what Ryan asked me this morning. So I lassoed a sheep. Just your average day at the farm.
Ok. I didn’t really lasso a sheep. I took a lasso, walked up to her, and put it around her neck. Our sheep are very tame and with her pink eye infection, she can barely see so running away wasn’t really an option. Once I had her roped, Brian and Rob held her while I treated her eyes.
We have something of a pink eye epidemic at the moment. Several of the calves and sheep have it. Just like with humans, it is highly contagious so once one gets it, you can be sure everyone will have it. You just have to let it run its course. We use a spray antibiotic (I’d like to see you try to put drops in a calf’s eyes) that we use on the worst cases as needed. As I’ve mentioned before, medication is always a last resort and we don’t preventatively dope our animals, but if they get sick we will medicate them, just as you would a child.
Speaking of sheep, Bob is doing well down with the layers. She and Chicken-dog are…co-habitating. I wouldn’t say they are getting along, but they aren’t driving each other crazy. Bob no longer spends her days cowering under the house and her novelty has worn off for Chicken-dog. While I haven’t seen them interact much, her presence has done something because we’ve only found one dead chicken since Bob moved in last week and we aren’t even sure Chicken-dog is to blame. Before Bob’s arrival, she was killing 1-2 a day. If Bob continues to keep the chickens safe, her utility might justify keeping her around!
Another first today was attempting to back up a wagon. Well, a chicken house. But it has a steerable front axle just like a hay wagon. It didn’t go well. No matter what I did, the house went where it wanted rather than where I wanted. It didn’t help that I was fighting gravity by trying to back it up a hill. Or that I was also trying to avoid running over chickens, Bob and Chicken-dog, all of whom were running about. Needless to say, the house is crooked and will remain crooked until we move it next week. That’s just life!
Otherwise it was a slow, wet day. It rained on and off, but it was just too warm for a rain coat. With the raincoat I was sweaty and gross and without it I was wet from the rain. I chose rain. Even with the rain, I’d rather be here than in a dry office elsewhere. That I still feel that way almost three months into this adventure is a pretty good sign.