It is that time of year again to put the old cows or ones with special needs into the geriatric barn and not let them out till spring time. So far I only have Gita and Radharani inside the geriatric barn. Radharani is the oldest cow in our herd at 23 years of age. She developed a growth on her right front leg earlier in the year. Dr. Moore our vet came and looked at it. He said as long as it is not causing her pain, or stopping her movement, he did not want to do anything to it because of her age.
I had noticed a couple of days ago that Radharani was not staying with the herd on pasture nor was she coming into the barn with them everyday. So Rudra (the dog) and I went to check on her several times a day making sure she was getting water and enough to eat. She is a real friendly lady and she also likes picking pockets for treats. She will eat anything; you really have to watch her. We were not too worried but then it started to get cold not only at night but also during the day. So Mom and I decided that if she did not come into the barn before 4 pm then we were going to put her in the geriatric barn.
So 4 pm rolls around and Radharani has not moved from the general area she was in that morning. Mom and I suited up in our cold weather gear. Mom went for the grain and I went and put gates up at the geriatric barn so that once we put her in she could not get out. Now Radharani is not only a real friendly lady she is also a real stubborn one. When she does not want to do something she does not do it no mater what you do. That is why Mom went for the grain. The trick is to have a grain bowl or bucket and that is how you get them to move without hopefully too much drama or frustration on our part. What you have to do is let them have a taste and then keep the grain right in front of them until you get them where you want them to go. Radharani was on top of the hill behind the barn, so that was going to be a little tricky and the cows were starting to come around the corner. So we had to get her though the gate at the bottom of the hill before the rest of the cows got that far.
It was close but we did it. Radharani was happy to go into the barn, in past years she was not happy in the beginning. Right after we put her into the geriatric barn Mom noticed that Gita was coming up the ramp slowly. Gita is one of the ones that Mom and I had talked about putting into the geriatric barn due to his arthritis. So we went and got another bucket of grain. Gita is always very happy to see a grain bucket and so it went very smoothly putting him in with Radharani. They have been in the geriatric barn two days together and they are very happy. We may put one or two others in with them but I am not sure yet who gets that privilege. It will depend on how the weather progresses and the cows’ health. Right now I am waiting to hear back from the vet on when he can come see Radharani to check out the lump on her leg. We will check also on what homeopathy treatment we can put her on.
Submitted by Lakshmi Devi