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Posted: Monday 22 January, 2018

by Rosemary at 10:33am in Smallholding No comments Add your own

Monday 15th January

A rather nice day – dry and sunny. Which made it a good day to give Annie a mini-bath as she had obviously laid in a big poop.

Texted Nik, our cattle foot trimmer, to see if he can swing by to trim Blizzard.

Tuesday 16th January

Very cold, but sunny. Some snow flurries but no snow lying.

Wednesday 17th January

Cold and windy with a hard frost but no snow.

Annie is lame – really lame – in a back foot. Her feet are quite long and when I checked my records, their feet were last trimmed in February last year.

I suppose it was a good thing that I had already made contact with Nik, and he’s coming tomorrow.

I was at the Scottish Parliament, attending the Cross Party Working Group on Crofting, on behalf of Smallholding Scotland.

Interesting presentation on the impact of the loss of small abattoirs – rather timely, with the closure of Orkney abattoir last week. I pointed out to the group that this wasn’t just an issue in the crofting counties, but was an issue all over Scotland.

Thursday 18th January

Lovely morning. Decided to ask the vet to come out at the same time as Nik is here – with the cows in the crate, he can get a really good look at the sore feet of both Annie and Blizz.

Spent the morning looking at foot baths for the cattle. Nik and Robert arrived at 3.30pm; the cows know the crate and express their dislike!!

Blizz first – Nik had a good trim and the problem is mechanical in origin –i.e. she’s stepped on something that has damaged her foot – rather than bacterial.

Robert and Nick examining Blizzard's feetVet and hoof-trimmer working on Blizzard's feet.

Once trimmed, Nik applied wooden blocks to the undamaged cleat and some anti-everything paste to the damaged one and bandaged it. The bandage is to stay on for a week.

Blizzard's clogBlizzard's clog.

Annie’s problem was also mechanical – she had a bruise on her foot. Nik trimmed her to released the pressure – I guess it was like a blood blister. Robert gave both of them a painkiller.

The stuff on Blizzard’s foot obviously nips as she’s been groaning all day. Rosie only needed a trim.

Dan took down the old bird boxes and cleaned them out and made some new ones. We’ll dust them with Diatom prior to putting them up early February.

I started to turn out the potting shed, which was quite therapeutic. Didn’t get it finished today though.

Friday 19th January

Had a few snow flurries today but it didn’t come to anything. Popped down to East Pitkerro but the steers still had plenty hay. Picked up three bales of hay and a bale of straw.

Annie is better today, but not completely sound; Blizz is still lame but not groaning as much.

Saturday 20th January

Cold but dry.

Dan made more bird boxes.

Bird boxesHome-made bird boxes.

I made a Swiss Roll.

Swiss rollSwiss roll.

Took the dogs to Monikie Country Park for a walk.

Sunday 21st January

Still cold but no snow. Andy was here, so he and Dan made a start on collecting up the felled timber from around the holding, then splitting and stacking it.

I expanded my Swiss Roll repertoire by making a chocolate one, with chocolate buttercream and whipped cream filling. It’s very good.

Had roast lamb for dinner – that’s the last of our lamb from 2016. We didn’t have any last year, of course, so looking forward to some at the end of 2018.

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