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Friday, August 28, 2015

Last Night's Lessons Learned

I made the below post on social media, last night.

Lessons learned on the ranch today:
1) Baby calves panic when their momma gets sick and they are separated.
2) Momma Cows get upset when baby calves panic. Even when the baby isn't theirs!
3) I can semi rope.
4) Flower Boy can bulldog like nobody's business!
5) Princess Sheba and Miss Royal are the two most patient dogs in the world!
6) I need a bath!

Here's the story behind it!

This Momma Cow got sick.
Sunday, she was fine.
Monday, she was fine.
Tuesday, she wasn't feeling well.
Wednesday, she was down!
(I will tell you more about her sickness in next week's Moo Cow Monday post.)

She was so sick she didn't argue getting to the pen, loading into the stock trailer, receiving a shot, or being placed in a pen at the house, without her baby.
At the time we were loading her, we couldn't get her baby along with her.
The baby was left in the pasture, as we knew we needed to get the momma care.
Her baby would be okay, with the herd, until the next day.
We have several Granny Cows in the herd.
The baby could nurse from them for a bit.

Yesterday was the next day.
I apologize for not having photos or a video, but I will do my best to paint the pictures in your mind.
(A lesson learned, aside from these, is I get busy working and fail to take photos.)
I got home from work.
Flower Boy was waiting on me.
I ran into the house changed into my tennis shoes, a pair of running shorts, and a tee shirt.

We pull into the pasture.
Call the cattle up to the catch pen.
All the Momma Cows come into the pen.
A few of the calves enter the pen.
The little baby, that has the sick momma, she doesn't enter the pen.


We take some time.
Let the cattle settle.
Flower Boy attempts to rope the baby.


Now, when you are missing your momma, one would think, you would come to meet the persons trying to help you get to your momma, right?

Lesson Number 1 Learned!

We take a different approach.
Flower Boy drives the truck.
I walk behind the calves.
They are directed towards the catch pen.
When we get close to the catch pen, 
I grab the rope.
The calves are then herded into the catch pen by the truck and me with the rope.
Flower Boy jumps out of the truck, slams the gate, grabs the little calves back leg, I throw the rope on her neck, Flower Boy bulldogs the calf, and the Momma Cows become very upset!

 Hence Lessons 2 thru 4!

While Flower Boy is tying the calf's feet,
I run all the other cattle out of the catch pen.
Making sure the gate is secure, with the cattle on the outside!

This little calf was born July 15th.
No matter how hard we try, we always seem to have a summer born calf!
She is a fancy little heifer.
Her body is square.
She is also very strong!
There was no way we could load her onto the back of the truck.

Flower Boy "Can you hook on to the gooseneck?"
Me "NO!  I will stay here with her.  You go get it!"
With the cake feeder on the back of the truck, I can't see to back up to the trailers.
It would have taken me an hour to connect the trailer and get back.
Flower Boy could do it much quicker than I.

Off he goes!
Leaving me, in the catch pen, with the hogtied little heifer, who weighs twice my body weight or more!
She struggles to get loose!
She cries!
The other Momma Cows ram the fence panels to get to her and ME!
They beller and paw the ground!
I talk to them and her.
"Clam down!"
"We are only trying to help."
"This has to be done to get her back with her momma."
"Go tend to your own babies!"

I pat and pet the little heifer.
Doing all I can to keep her calm

It's getting dark.
I look around.
I notice, we are laying/sitting in the discharge/recycle end of the cake line.
The calf and I are covered with cattle poop!

Acknowledgment of Lesson 6!
Soon Flower Boy arrives back with the stock trailer.
We pull the calf into the trailer.
Untie her feet.
She stands up.
We deliver her to her momma!

Momma and Baby pair up!
Baby cries!
Momma moos!
Baby starts nursing!

 Our job is done!

Lesson 5:
All this time,
Princess Sheba and Miss Royal have been patient.
They have both sat in the truck without a single whimper, whine, or bark to get out.

As for the lessons we realized this morning?
1) Always saddle the horse!
2) Always take the stock trailer!
3) Wear jeans and boots!
4) Bruising and body stiffing start a few hours after the rodeo!
5) Look back and laugh at yourself!
6) Go to lunch together and laugh some more!

Flower Boy,
I am so blessed to have you as my partner!
How about a Ranch Rodeo Team?

Rancher Girl