Our cows have been on holidays for three months (and counting) and I'm beginning to get a little jealous.
These photos are of our dry cows (because, quite literally, they are 'dry' or not milking as they prepare to have their babies).
I took these on the day that the paddock attached to the barn was opened (in the late spring--hence the clouds). This means, during the interim months of their pregnancy our dry cows are resting and relaxing with 24/7 access to a spacious field for their grazing pleasure.
Maternity leave at its best if you ask me.
With our barn numbers down to about a quarter (we also have our heifers out on pasture until October, weather permitting) the change is definitely noticeable. I think it compares to kids going to camp: life at home (barn) has become quieter, tidier and the fridge (feed bunk) stays full a little longer with fewer mouths to feed. But when they do come back, rosy cheeked (glossy coats), refreshed (rotund) and with stories to share you can't help but welcome them home with open arms...the increased workload aside.
On nice days, especially when the gentlest of breezes is blowing and there are mouthfuls of grass to be had, all our dry cows can be found outside, leaving the free stalls and feed bunk eerily empty. While they stroll and lay about in the field I can't help but remember the saying 'party until the cows come home.'
But, on this farm, no one can outright party while three quarters of our herd is still in attendance but, at the very least, I'm sure we can have an appy hour.
Cheese and crackers anyone?
Do you have any comments or questions about this post? Write below and I would love to get back to you. Have a great Wednesday and, if you can, soak up some sunshine.