This winter has been up and down and up and down in temperatures. And the varuation is so vast that the animals no sooner get used to hunkering down than it is warm again then cold again. Well, one of the three little pigs went down yesterday.
Over 24 hours she went from vibrant to lethargic, alone and not eating. Lying in dark corners. After taking advice and getting medication I wormed her and gave her a shot of antibiotics for suspected pneumonia. Pigs go down from pneumonia very quickly. (Though this is not common in pigs this size). Even catching her and sticking her with needles is dangerous for her health due to the stress. Pigs are in a way, very sturdy and quite delicate. The other two I will worm today as well. (that will be a scene – I seldom worm at this age usually only as littlies – these girls are big).
I put in a heat lamp again. If it is bronchial she needs to be warm.
I will see how she is this morning. If she is better today then we are OK. If things were not caught in time we may have lost her.
By yesterday evening she ate a little, was drinking and they were all sleeping together. So I am feeling hopeful.
I chose to close the big barn right up so it was warmer in there for the pigs. This meant letting the two milking cows and the Twins cross the field and occupy the Rat House. This is not as convenient for milking but once they were in there I could see that it was a warmer option. Their area in the home barn faces West and the rat house faces East. They do not need a creep for the babies so these Winter Quarters work well. Also the floor in the Rat House is dirt while means drainage and drier.
The big cows remember this from last winter and the babies settled right in – creeping into Sheila’s other tin house. Out of the wind.
The other advantage is that I can get the tractor in here in the spring for a clean up.
And just in case you were wondering why I can’t use the whole of the Rat House for the cows (or pigs, as the case may be) – have a look at what I have fenced off.
It has taken years for me to get John to tow away the car carcasses that take up the room that cows could use. More to go too!!
The chickens are right next door.
I caught one peering through the crack in the connecting door to see what the hell was going on in there.
The three little pigs have a car art installation too. Here they were last night. The poorly one in the middle. Her sleeping with her sisters is a very good sign. A sick pig is left completely alone which is natures way of decreasing the risk of contamination.
OK, I will go out and start the chores and update you as to the pig’s condition in the comments. Let’s hope she made it through the night.
Have a good one.
WEATHER: Looks like the wind has dropped. That is a bonus. And not too cold which is good for the small pigs.
Wednesday 01/24 20% / 0 in
A few flurries possible early. Cloudy skies early, then partly cloudy this afternoon. High 34F/1C. Winds WNW at 5 to 10 mph.
Wednesday Night 01/24 10% / 0 in
Partly cloudy skies. Low 24F/-4C. Winds SSW at 5 to 10 mph.
7:10 am 5:00 pm
Waxing Crescent, 46% visible 11:18 am Not Available