Tuesday, March 26, 2019

Cows, Cats, Chickens

Our neighbors are the BEST!  
The Tuckers told us they were going to be rounding up their cattle to re-tag and spray the mommas for fleas, ticks, and chiggers, and check the calves, banding the boys.  We were invited to watch.  We did!

Some of the tags looked like there was NO number.

Now everyone knows who she is.

The calves coming to the chute.

Our favorite girl.

A while back we "found" some cats.  I checked with the closest house to where we found them.
Oh no!  They were dropped off.  We brought them home to learn that the local (and not so local) veterinarian charges $50+ to spay or neuter cats.  
Um NO!  
But.....  In December and July they neuter for $5 and spay for $23.
I called animal control.  There is no place close to take them.  They were male and I did not want them mating with my female cats.  We put them back.  Yep.  Cruel.  I get it.  And it was done.

The next time we visited our neighbors on the other side of the hill, the cats had found them!  We were so happy to learn that they had a home.  

Then........... we discovered that our 2 female cats are pregnant!  
Oh NO!  
The onions are excited.
Our animals will be spayed or neutered in July!

A couple of days later the same neighbors invited me and the onions to come help chase and catch some chickens that were dumped there.  Everyone rushed to their truck!
A few chickens were already in the cage.

We caught the one young chicken relatively easily.  Mr. Tucker was the catching hand after it slipped through several attempts to stop it and scoop it up.  

The Rooster was a different story!  We chased that guy for 40 minutes.  It was like running in a soccer game.  Never really stopping and always strategizing.  Everyone was all in to start.  Then blaming, yelling, and frustration ensued.  Some walked away. Some persevered.  Amelia was determined to catch it!
Mr. Tucker was calm and rather quiet the entire time.  It was his hand that finally captured the chicken,  I sometimes ask if my children and helping or hindering.  I think it was the latter, including myself, in this case.

We debrief just about everything these days....  
We talked about what went well, what didn't, other things we noticed, and what we could do differently next time.  They participated and had great insight.  I am already looking forward to our next chicken chase.

We got to keep the chickens.  Amelia wanted to butcher and eat the rooster!  

I called our neighbor over the hill (almost our back door neighbor, but it's over a mile to their house by road) to come help us.  In the few minutes we had to wait for him, we observed yucky mucus on several beaks and diarrhea out the other end.  There were several possibilities of sickness.  I did not want to get our chickens sick.  We do not have facilities to quarantine.  I did not know if the sickness was severe of minor. 
 Mr. Farrell "euthanized" ALL of them for us.  I learned a new technique - upside down in a cone.  Although, I did get the hatchet out for the young chicken: she was much too small for the cone.  Mr Farrell gave us one of his cones!

We live within the national forest boundaries.  Animals get dumped here.  Sigh. 
Thank you to all of you responsible pet owners!

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