Sunday, August 31, 2014

So Easy to Make a Mistake

Now each day things seem to have returned to as normal as it can be on a farm, I am really shocked, hurt and not real pleased with myself.  I was thinking oh, yes we are taking care of everything during the weeks we spent going to the hospital and care facility (this was while my brother was sick) but to my amazement, I was doing a poor job.

About a week ago someone asked me, "Do your goats have worms?"  The shock and horror of I have not been doing the weekly feeding to DE to my goats or birds went through me like a knife.  The next morning on the milking stand I was checking the eyes of the goats, one way to check for worms.  Chickens were all doing good, well, maybe, eggs have slacked off but some are starting to molt and then it hit.  One of the two oldest girls was down.  At first, I thought she had gone broody, 6 years old and never been there before, August, expecting a really cold winter, no way, I am not setting a hen as I have gotten the others to change their minds about being broody, I just do not do fall chickens.

A couple of days later, Ornery,  could hardly move,  WORMS, I was so upset.   I had been giving them a few squash here and there but I have pumpkin in the freezer and I could have made them a pumpkin smoothie.  That afternoon she would not stay out of the water bowl.  I picked her up and put her into the brooder box because I did not want the others to get what she had if there was another problem.   In about 2 days I knew it was over and I was waiting for the death-chicken to come along and take her to chicken heaven.  The first girls being 6 years old just have a forever home and a grave in the garden.  I would do it no other way.  My Wee's helped name them and these girls are so special to me.  We have watched this girl go for 2 weeks without hardly anything to eat, very little to drink and saw no improvement.  I kept pushing, fresh water twice a day, sugar water and fresh food.  One day in total disgust with myself I pushed her head into the water, my girl started drinking.  She drank and drank, Mr. Bootsie came into the coop and saw her drinking asking, "What has changed?" "Just drinking water," was my response.

We have  watched progress over the last week, She is eating a bit more, up walking about, you can tell she is listening to the other birds outside in the runs by the way she turns her head.  She is weak but we feel on the mend, I will never know if this was a case of extreme broodiness or if my girl had another problem.  I am just so pleased this little hen with a huge attitude may be on the mend.  I miss her fussing with all of the other girls, trying to beat me to the door so she can escape only to stop and let me pick her up.  Yes, she was my spoilt rotten girl.

As far the goats having worms, I really do not think they do,  They run, play, eat everything in sight and are just a delight to have on our farm.  One morning this week, I stopped by a chair which has not been used all summer and sit down with all of my critters in their own runs and pastures,  It was such a pleasure watching them working, swimming and resting in their favorite spots.  I have missed the quiet moments I enjoyed with all of animals.

Saturday, as I went into the coop to bed everyone down, Ornery met me at the door, she wanted to return to the big girl part of the coop.  I opened the door and she went right into a nesting box.  Can she be broody?  Only time will tell.  But she went on her on and I am so happy my girl seems to be returning to being herself.

Life on the farm has plenty of ups and downs.  I am so pleased we seem to have a number of good days, we really do try to take good care of all of our animals.  Thanks for sharing a few minutes with my family.