Tuesday 9th January 2018
Today was TB testing day for all our cows, goats and alpacas. As mentioned back on 1st Dec, we are being tested again due to a TB outbreak on one of our neighbour’s farm, in what is known as a contiguous test. With it being winter, getting ready for Graeme the vet was relatively straightforward: the cows are of course in the Cow Pad with the crush next door, the goats confined themselves to the barn as they don’t like wet weather (although it was only a little damp today) and whilst the alpacas were out, a quick rattle of the famous feed bucket meant that they were inside their field shelter within seconds.
The procedure is the same for each set of animals. They all have two injections in two separate places, where they are given one shot of Avian TB and one of Bovine TB. The cows are injected in the right hand side of their neck, one above the other with the bird TB being above (cos birds fly!!). The goats are also injected in the neck but the Avain TB is the right hand side and the Bovine the left. The alpacas are also left and right hand sides but not in the neck, their injections are under their armpits.
We did the alpacas first as they potentially were going to be the most problematic in terms of getting stressed. Jupiter ‘went first’ and was not happy to stand and have his legs lifted to expose his armpits so he ended up laying down!! The others we managed to keep standing whilst one of us lifted one leg at a time so Graeme could inject, drawing a cross on their skin first so he could pinpoint exactly where the injection had to go. The goats were next, they were fine apart from Pebbles who got very stressed and did not want us to hold her at all. Sorrel and family were more than happy to be held using it as an excuse to have some extra nibbling time!!
The cows were also fine, they have had a lot of ‘crush’ experience now, they don’t exactly like it but are resigned to it. The only issue there was how wet and therefore muddy, the Collecting area became as they emerged from the crush and ran around… it wil recover of course...
Graeme is back on Friday for the results!!!!!!