“Baby” Calves

We live a farm.  We don’t own the farm, the cattle or the house.  Hubby works for the farmer.  All in all, it’s a pretty good arrangement for both of us.  I, however, don’t work for the farmer, but Hubby gets me roped into things on a fairly regular basis and for the most part, I don’t mind.

On the farm here there are about 950 head of cattle on any given day.  Typically they come here half grown.  They get fed to market weight and then go on the packing house.  I am used to steers about this size….

They have a month or two to go and then they will go off to market.

This last batch that came in are small.  Typically we get them much bigger than these.

These guys are truly babes and haven’t adapted to the world of steers.  Some are still healing from having their horns removed.

Occasionally we get in some that are Black Angus breed but for the most part, Holstein steers are raised here.  This batch happened to have a couple Red Holsteins in the bunch.

Yesterday, they wouldn’t quit bellering.   I could tell they weren’t happy at all.  I called Hubby on the phone and asked his about the calves concerned that something was wrong.  He said that they had split the group into two pens and they might be missing the other calves.  He was away from the farm and asked that I go check on them.  They had food…they had water…they just weren’t acclimated to there new surroundings yet.

Today is another day of bellering.  I feel so bad for them.  I am sure I’ll be back out there a couple more times to check on them.  Hopefully soon they will be a bit more comfortable with their new pens.

On a side note…Hubby came in for a snack today and I didn’t have anything baked.  I ended up whipping up some Vanilla Wafer Treats..something my farmer wife mom used to make all the time.  They are quick and easy..made in literally seconds.  You can find the “recipe” here.

5 thoughts on ““Baby” Calves”

  1. We used to custom feed cattle and get about 250 head of beef cattle at a time (we have a pretty small operation). The worst part was when we would get the occasional bred heifers that were not supposed to be bred and it never ended well. It’s one of the reasons dh quit custom feeding. Now we have a couple dozen or so at a time, mostly feeders from his dad’s hereford farm, and he’s much happier. There’s no link for the vanilla wafer treats.

  2. Pat C in Washingon

    I grew up in between two dairy farms. One was holsteins – milked by machine and I’m sorry but they were the dumbest beasts on earth. They routinely walked through their fences and trampled our lawn and gardens and the bulls terrorized us kids (gads they were HUGE!). The other farm had a mix of Jerseys and Guernseys and they were so beautiful and gentle and were hand milked by an old Swiss farmer and his grown kids. The cows would even let us neighbor kids milk them after a bit…we’d just sidle in along side the farmer and lean our head into their flank and slide our hands in and take over. The cows would look back, like “oh good grief, what now?” They had the longest eyelashes and were so sweet.

  3. in the spring, when the farmer on the outskirts of town separates the mama’s from the baby calves they bawl something fierce. and constantly. for days. we live about half a mile from the farm and the first time my city-boy husband heard it he just about had kittens! we still laugh at that.

  4. I was born & raised in the city. But for two weeks every summer from the time I was six years old until about 14..I was a total farm girl. My Aunt & Uncle owned a dairy farm. I loved getting up in the wee early morning hours and sneaking out to the milk barn. One of my favorite things was the pen where the calves were when they were getting weaned. You’d stick your fingers in the pail of milk ~put your fingers in their mouth and lead them to the feed pail. It was so slimy & gross..but I loved every minute of it. Riding horses, gathering eggs, mending fences, going out to get a pitcher of milk for supper. By the time I got used to the taste of raw milk it was time to go home…..I hated to see the time go by so fast and cried every year when it was time to go. Precious memories.. =)

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