Wednesday, June 4, 2014

Life and Death on the Farm

It seems like every year I do a post on dying. Life is easy to share with you. New lambs, new corn plants, spring--it's all good!

But you cannot have life without both ends--birth and death. And while I am usually pretty jazzed at the end of life of a corn field (harvest is a pretty exciting time), I am less excited about the death of an animal.

Yesterday we found one of our barn cats had been hit, but was still alive. While we made plans to put her out of her misery, she dragged herself off somewhere to die alone.

The past week I've been struggling with a lamb with a broken leg. He was too old to teach to drink from a bottle, even though I tried. For a while, we wondered if his mother was still caring for him. But we found his body yesterday when we moved the sheep to a new pasture.

This little lady's mother developed mastitis. It went septic, and by the time we realized the severity and decided to treat her with antibiotics (thereby making her no longer organic), it was too late.

The loss of any animal is sad. But the loss of a brood cow is also a financial blow. The calf is doing fine. We are bottle feeding her twice a day, and soon she will join the cow/calf herd (while we continue to bottle feed her).

She was pretty excited for her bottle this morning.


  1. Hard losses, all of them, Lona ;( Thank you for being so honest about every part of farming, and here's hoping that's the last loss for quite some time!

  2. My brother in law says " if you have livestock you will also have deadstock". O guess death on the farm bringsus to the true meaning of circle of life. Doesn't make it any easier. I find it impossible to share. Thank you for doing that Lona.


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