Practicing To Be A Cow

Emmy is a "heifer" meaning she is a young bovine who has never given birth. Emmy is due with her first calf on the 25th of this month. Since everything will be new to her, we wanted to give her a "practice run" of what to expect after she calves. It's much easier to get a heifer use to what is going on before the raging hormones set in after they give birth.

Emmy has only lived at our farm since the end of November and she has never even been in the front pasture. So, while the other cows were being milked, I let Emmy into the front pasture to check things out. Being the funny girl that she is, she would stick her neck way out and run to inspect the new territory. Since I didn't want her to roam to far away, I decided to give her a bite of hay to eat while she was waiting. (Of course, Emmy had no clue what she was waiting on or even that she was waiting.) After the last cow came out of the stanchion and was escorted to the back pasture, it was time for Emmy to practice.

I said, "Emmy, it's time to go into the stanchion." Of course, Emmy did not understand a word I said. Emmy has been taught to lead but I really wanted to teach her to go into the stanchion on her own without being haltered or led.

Mike began to entice her with a bit of grain. She was still hesitant at first. After backing out a few times she finally decided that going into the stanchion was not so bad after all. Once she decided it was safe, she just walked right in. Mike slowly shut the head gate and Emmy stood quietly eating her grain. She never got excited and never tried to escape. We touched her udder and she never even flinched.

We are getting very excited about Emmy being our newest milk cow and can't wait to see her new calf. We will give her some more "practice runs" in the stanchion before she calves and even turn on the milking machine and let it run so that she can hear the noise and know what to expect. We don't want her to be frightened when the time comes to milk her, but if tonight is any indication of how she will be, I don't think we have anything to worry about.


Anonymous said...

Hi Tammy,
My Spot is being a pain in the neck.... sitting here envious of your Emmy! I hope it soon for both of you, and all goes smoothly.
Bye for now,

Tammy Renee' Cupp said...

So sorry that Spot is not being cooperative!

Jessika said...

I've been doing the same with the heifers! It's fun to think about milking a new cow, isn't it?

Autumn Living said...

I love this idea...we help to milk our friends cows (one of which is due to calf any day now). I'm going to share your blog with them. Thanks!!!


Amy Lagerquist said...

Yay, Emmy! Sounds like she's off to a great start, Tammy!