Yesterday Allison from Red Door Coop arrived in the afternoon. She is here for a week on a farmy farm stay. I had had a busy day, getting ready for Alison, editing the latest format of The Letters,  Queenie and her Flerd were in Pats Paddock, Mama and her girls were in the middle field and Daisy was in the rat house paddock where all the new clover was growing.  The Pigs lay in the mud enjoying the warm sun and Timatanga sat sulking under her little apple tree.

When we arrived home, after showing Allison to her room, TonTon and I went out to bring Daisy in for the milking – I usually bring her in early so she can settle down.

When I opened the gate I noticed that there was blood on the ground.Red blood.  It is funny how when you see something dreadful your thought processes (or at last My thought processes) slow down and a slow motion series of these thoughts travel through your head. They are totally clear thoughts  but there is a grappling in your brain as you try to make sense of what you are seeing.

As she walked past me I noticed that one of her teats was dripping milk, then I realised that the milk was mixed with blood then I realised that her teat was hanging at an odd angle. Once she arrived at the barn, I brought her a bucket with oats and got down under her to look at her udder, she had scraped the skin right off the bottom of her udder and the one teat had a great gash into it. Sliced right through.  Gaping. Mama and I looked at each other and sighed. Trouble.  She had tried to jump the fence, betcha, Mama said from her supine position. Hmm – mm,  seen her do that more than once. Stupid cow. The milk and blood continued to flow and chills ran down my spine.

I called my two vets and it was decided that the vet who was closest would come out to see to her. Not my Lady Vet, TonTons vet.   I brought Daisy into the milking parlour, loaded her feeder up, jammed her in tightly with the milking gate and shacked her foot. She is used to that foot being shackled, as that is the side she kicks me with, so just wrapping the chain around her foot immobilises that side.  This was a bonus for what was to come. Allison changed into her boots and jeans and swung into action – with me calling instructions from the milking parlour she fed the chicks and the pigs like a pro -allowing me to stay with Daisy and keep her calm. We watched the road out of the corners of our eyes and waited. Finally the vet arrived in his red truck.  At that point he was the best thing I had ever seen.  He came in, knelt down and had a look at the teat and at the puddle of blood and milk below her.  A grim cast washing across his face. And so we got to work.

She was sedated slightly – just enough to  take the edge off. Then the area in her udder was given a local. The vet took the smallest catheter he had and very carefully slid it up the milk duct to hold it open and resist swelling and tissue closing the milk duct down. Within seconds the milk and no blood began to flow down the tube. This was good news.  It seemed that she may have tried to jump the fence and failing, slid back off the fence, ripping the teat almost off but just nicking the interior milk channel. You will remember that as a young cow she used to routinely jump electric fences.

As I held the torch, he very carefully stitched the teat back together. I don’t know how any stitches, maybe 15 or so, but slowly the wound was closed.  Methodically as the sunset deepened he stitched. We talked about all kinds of things as we worked, why the finest sutures were transparent, why not glow in the dark, or blue – children,  friends, his work, my work, he likened The Fellowship to his class at vet school, exchanging information and learning all the time,  how learning from each other is better than competing with each other for who knows best. How he should go and see the new Planet of the Apes movie – monkeys on horseback with machine guns -I told him, what more do you want,  how hard it was to find young vets for rural practices. How fat my vegetarian pigs were.  How he tries to find a good moment every day because sometimes his job is too sad and too busy. We talked about Mama and how he will come today and give her, her own appointment. Not hurry her.

Daisy listened to our voices as we calmly worked, her eyes blinking from the sedative.

It is possible that the teat will heal. Maybe we will lose that quarter. But we have agreed that as soon as she is well enough we will dry her back up. He said that Daisy will almost definitely have mastitis in that quarter now, if we can save it at all. So we have also agreed that the best thing for the cow, next year, would be two calves and the odd milking for the house.

John arrived home and took Allison around the gardens. While the vet and I worked in the barn, they picked basil for pesto, and greens for a big salad. They cooked the pasta and a few beans and grated the parmesan.

The catheter was left in Daisy’s teat to keep draining the milk, the vet finally got to go home for his dinner, (we will see him again today)  and I milked the other three quarters. Daisy’s legs began to dip and buckle as I finished, her joints going fluid, she was listing over to her side.  Wake up Daisy, I was calling, let me finish, her hoof tipping like a horses, her eyes were closing as she gently drooped her way to her clean room. I then fed the milk to the pigs and Aunty Del,  and came up for dinner.

Today will be another fiercely emotional day.

I hope you have a loud and lively day too.

your friend on the farmy


46 Comments on “Daisy

  1. {{{{{HUGS}}}}} to you and all the farmy and the fellowship! Will be thinking of you as I go about my day.

  2. I’m so sorry C. Daisy is having such a hard time. I’m glad Allison is there to help you. My thoughts are with you today as the vet returns to see about Mama and check on Daisy. Big hug for you from Texas.

  3. Oh Celi ~ what a day for you and Daisy! Bet both of you were a bit tired last nite! Hope Maisy Daisy does ok. Sounds like Boo will have another Nanny job!!

  4. TOugh time… what a wonderful vet, so glad you have the support of someone like him… and perfect timing for Allison to help you. GO well, all of you, love Valerie

  5. Thoughts are with you today! Seems just lately that our animals are determined to worry us to death! I have lost 5lb in weight over Sam in the past week! I think it is because like you, in side I am stressed, but outwardly I try to appear cool and calm for his sake. This kind of stress works hard on the body as it is not expressed and builds up. Think I can see a vodka and tonic night coming up and a good sad movie to let everything out! Glad you have some company to help you through this. I am sure Allison will be a comfort and she will learn so much whilst there (maybe somethings she didn’t want to learn?)

  6. Oh Paisley Daisy … some one should remind her she is no longer a puppy 🙂 Talk about initiation of fire for Allison. Thinking of you today. Laura

  7. What a worry for you, and how lucky Daisy is to have you. I prescribe a large glass of wine after all the worry and emotion, and for the worry and emotion that’s in store for you today. I’m pleased you have help and companionship right now.

  8. Oh, Miss Daisy! The grass is not greener on the other side dear.

    Your are having a mighty tough time this summer. Hugs.

  9. Simply overwhelming, but you seem to have handled it all in stride, Celi. You are such a strong woman and I admire that in you. I hope Daisy mends well, with no complications.

  10. I’m glad it’s not worse. I have one of those stupid imaginations that always pictures the worst, but it comes in handy when trying to locate the bright side. “At least it wasn’t that…” I’m so sorry for her, for you. I’m glad you have extra hands on the farmy. (Yay Allison!) And my version of prayers will be racing across the ocean. There is always something…

  11. We will be keeping you in our thoughts today… So glad you were able to get a vet over there, around here that can be the biggest of all the challenges. Hugs to all of you.

  12. Sending positive thoughts. It’s hard seeing our animals and pets struggle with injuries. Daisy is certainly keeping you on your toes! I hope she heals quickly.

  13. I’m glad too that Daisy is okay! Good healing thoughts going out your way! I have a lot of appreciation for all that you do.
    We finally have nice soaking rain in New Mexico!!

  14. So glad your vet could come out quickly and tackle the teat repair job. He sounds like a keeper.
    I’ll be thinking of Mama today.
    Hugs to you, Celi.

  15. What a roller coaster of a life. Like Crazy Mom said you never know whether you are to wake to a miracle or a tragedy. You certainly have them in equal measure, with emphasis on the tragic. Allison picked a doozy of a week to be there. I’m hoping she’ll be a major help and comfort.

  16. You are right…silly cow ..but I still feel she needs a cuddle. I love cows especially Daisy and Queenie

  17. Boy, one just never knows what each day will bring on a farm. I am so sorry, Celi. I know how you love all your critters. First Mama and now Daisy. I am happy that one of the fellowship is there with you in person in addition to all of us in spirit. I agree….. a nice glass of wine to take the edge off for you, too. Will be anxious to hear about what the vet says about Mama and keeping you and her and Daisy in my good thoughts.

  18. Oh C. Not more trouble with Daisy…and I can only imagine what you are going through today with your beloved Mama…You will be in my thoughts all day. Sending love~

  19. I was worried when I saw the post title, remembering the Duke of Kupa. Sending healing to Daisy across the miles of plains that separate us.

  20. at least she didn’t try to jump over the moon; what a thud in the earth that would have been; wishing you quick deliveries of all animal troubles and glad Allison is htere! hugs for good measure

  21. a tough day, hope tomorrow is brighter, hugs to all, don’t forget to breathe, hurray for Allison.

  22. Silly moo!
    How wonderful to have Allison arrive just when you needed an extra pair of hands.
    Daisy must have been pleased to have you there to keep her company when she was feeling fragile.

  23. Oh what a fright you must have had. But good that the vet was so reassuring and could do what was needed. Raising animals is a fraught business, I can see. And rewarding too. I hope Daisy heals well.

  24. Never a dull moment at your Farmy Farm. The vet sounds like a great person, how wonderful he can be there for Mama and has the same feeling about the situation as you do.

  25. Quietly glad that Alison is there and will be for some days yet – someone who is practical, someone two legged with whom one can make necessary decisions fast. Silly Moo: sure, but what has happened has happened . . . . Be OK, eat great and have those few absolutely essential drinks . . . .

  26. What a day for you all. I’m pleased Allison was there to lend an extra pair of hands, and support, at the critical moments.

  27. What a great day for Allison to arrive, when you really needed help. Wishing all the best for Miss Daisy. She must think she’s still a youngster. Thankful for a kind vet; it sounds like there is great need for more of them. Hope all goes well and Mama has a good appointment.

  28. I am reading this after midnight. Your day was much more taxing than mine… and yet here I am still putting up carrots, and thinking I should sleep before working on the tomatoes and squash – such silly thoughts! I guess it will all wait until tomorrow. Maybe things will look better for you tomorrow too. I sure hope so!

  29. Like so many of us aging critters, Daisy thought she could still jump over the moon. Thankfully she has the most caring humans on her side and to keep her well grounded.

  30. It is never easy we can all agree but a few us see the bigger picture in life and we are kind beyond our years I am so sorry it is so hard on you Sending you some extra hugs XO

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