Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Animal Abuse: It's Disgusting!

Unfortunately, in this world there are bad things that happen that we try hard to prevent but it's impossible to stop. One of those things is people bringing harm upon animals that cannot defend themselves. Just like any other crime, we have laws to bring consequences to the people that do this but there are always those bad apples that continue to do it! There are laws that make animal abuse illegal and those people will face consequences if the authorities find them guilty of breaking these laws.
Some of this may go on in animal agriculture today and we try our best to ensure it does not. I encourage people to educate themselves on animal agriculture and talk to farmers, veterinarians and animal scientists that work with these animals every day. Through the work of the farm vet he has found that 99% of the animal owners he works with try their best to provide the best lifestyle for their animals. We do have to keep in mind that these animals are not pets, so they will not be living in the house and going on family vacations with their owners! They will be receiving adequate food and water and medical care and treatment as necessary.
Those people that do not take care of their animals and abuse them are a disgrace to their peers. I hope people see the bigger picture of animal owners, that they are good people and are in the business of animal agriculture because they ENJOY it and have RESPECT for the animals. Please, do not forget that. As is common with our media today, it focuses on the negative isolated incidents instead of any of the positive. If you see something you don't understand or would like an explanation on, ask us!
Here are some websites to get a glimpse into the life of some of the cattle owners in family businesses today:



Monday, May 24, 2010

The Next Generation: The 'big girl' corrals!

In two previous posts, we showed a cow giving birth and then the first 70 days or so of that calf's life on a dairy or calf ranch. Once they get past the first few months, they are then moved to a "big girl" corral where they can run around and intermingle with the other calves their age. These are called "running pens." The young heifers are usually grouped by their age so as to make it easier to watch them grow.

One of the jobs the farm vet performs at this stage in the heifer's life is vaccinating for Brucellosis. This is a requirement for cattle owners in the state of California. The heifers are vaccinated at four to six months of age. Brucellosis is a zoonotic disease, which means it can be transmitted to humans. This is why it is of extreme importance that these animals receive the vaccination. Of various types of infections, people become infected by contact with fluids from infected animals (sheep, cattle or pigs) or derived food products like unpasteurized milk and cheese. Once vaccinated, animals get a tattoo in their ear and an identification tag to show it has been properly done by an accredited veterinarian. If you would like to learn more about the disease, CLICK HERE.

Please take a minute to watch the video here that shows the farm vet vaccinating some jersey heifers on a dairy. It is quick, painless and part of the normal routine!

Here are some photos of the farm vet vaccinating cattle at a beef ranch.

Tuesday, May 11, 2010

Our first interview...straight from the horse's mouth!

We had our first interview about why we started this blog. The two dairy producers quoted in the article are very close to us, one a friend and one a relative! The article is on page 8 of the link below. A big thank you to Kings County Farm Bureau for this. Please read and pass it along!

Also, visit the dairy producer blogs here:

Thursday, May 6, 2010

The poll doesn't lie......Royal Veterinary College!

For those of you that voted in the poll, "Which vet school did the farm vet attend?" the correct answer is The Royal Veterinary College in London, England. The correct school had the most votes!

The farm vet grew up in England and upon graduation from vet school wanted to practice in either the U.S. or Canada. He visited practices in both countries and decided he was best suited for a dairy-specific practice in California. Since then he has transitioned into mixed practice but the majority of his time is spent with cattle. No small animal, with the exception of free advice and exams for family and friends' pets. ;)

The farm vet says he's always had a love for animals, especially cows. When he was young he used to take a short-cut through some pastures on his walk to school in his village. He said this was the best part of his day, walking through the pasture and getting a chance to interact with the cows. The comfort around the animals has always come naturally to him. During his youth, the farm vet also used to help on a neighbor's dairy doing odd jobs.

Throughout college he had worked on several farms and with veterinary clinics in the UK and overseas. I believe each person has a gift for doing something. As his wife, it's been obvious the farm vet has a gift for working with animals. There is a certain confidence and ease with the way someone like him is able to handle an animal and still keep a level head to make the best decisions.

He told me this the other day, "I had a professor in college that said you have to work every day knowing that you did the best job you could, so that you can go to bed every night and sleep without worrying. You have to live by that." That is the kind of person I want to trust with the care of my animals.
 This girl had her early-morning photo shoot and a case of "bad hair day!"