Monday, December 9, 2013
Tuesday, December 3, 2013
Christmas on our family Dairy starts out like any other day with the alarm ringing at 5 am telling me its time to head to the barn. Santa’s helpers were busy late that night making sure all the gifts were wrapped and stockings were stuffed so I tiptoed out of the house to the barn as quiet as a mouse. I reached the barn to begin the daily ritual of starting the pipeline rinse, turning on the heater in the parlor and preparing the feed troughs for the cows. Next, I remind the cows what time it is as many have already made their way to the barn for the morning milking. Some of them usually decide to sleep in so it’s off to the pasture to round everybody up. It’s a good chilly walk as far as ½ mile to the back of the pasture in the cold morning air. Counting as I go so I know when I’ve got all the cows heading to the barn I head back to the barn singing Christmas carols on the way with the occasional moo approval of the cows. After the cows are locked in the holding pen its back to the milk house to finish getting ready to milk. Carrying the milkers into the parlor and connecting the pipeline to the bulk tank would complete the preparation along with getting all the teat dips and frost guard to protect the teats after each cow is milked. At 6 a.m. cows enter the parlor 4 on a side and I begin prepping and milking them 4 at a time. Milking all the cows normally take about an hour. Back in the house the kids begin to stir in anticipation of seeing what Santa left. They also begin to shout to their mom asking how long they would have to wait. Back at the barn around 7 a.m. the cows have been all milked and cleaning begins. The barn is washed out, the milkers are cleaned and the pipeline begins its wash cycle. The kids get excited when they hear the silo begin pouring out silage and the conveyer and bunk feeder motors are fired up to distribute the cows forage for the morning. While the cows are being fed I continue to feed the calves and heifers their morning diet. Milk for some, feed for others and water for all of them. Real cold mornings mean taking time to bust some ice. With the silage feeding complete I make one final walk through the milk house and parlor to make sure all the work is done. Usually about 8 a.m. or so I make it back to the house and find a good seat to watch the kids run to the tree and find the one present Santa had left them unwrapped along with a well filled stocking full of goodies. Can we open more shouts the kids but mom says not till we’ve had some cinnamon rolls and milk. After the quick breakfast everyone begins opening the packages under the tree. Play time is short as there are grandparents to visit. By late morning everyone enjoys the company of all the family at grandpa’s house to open more presents and enjoy a great Christmas lunch. About 4 p.m. I head to the barn for another 2-3 hours work in milking and feeding the cows and heifers. This time some of the other family members offer some help and things go a little faster. A nice dinner of leftovers is enjoyed by all and then it’s off to bed as 5 a.m. will come again tomorrow to start another day on the Dairy.
Wednesday, October 16, 2013
Having received a grant from Indiana Farm bureau, the Putnam County FB have designed and produced 5 Farm Safety signs that are going up throughout Putnam County. The signs will be used seasonally putting them up in the fall and in the spring during the high points of the farming season. The local FFA chapters have been asked to assist in the process of putting them up and down during the year. Additional signs will be added as additional funds become available. We hope that the motorists will recognize the need to slow down and understand the need for farmers to use the roads too. Special thanks to Phyllis Legan and the other FB members who helped make this possible.
Monday, September 30, 2013
HSUS Tells Shelters It’s Okay To Kill Animals
Nathan J. Winograd, director for the No Kill Advocacy Center, recently penned an opinion piece featured on theHuffington Post. The op-ed, “HSUS Tells Animal Shelters: Go Ahead And Kill Animals If You Want,” brings to light what many of us already know about animal rights activists: the health and safety of the animals aren’t their top priority.
You might recall that the Center For Consumer Freedom reported that “PETA killed a staggering 89.4% (29,398) of the adoptable pets in its care during 2012. Despite years of public outrage over its euthanasia program, the notorious animal rights group has continued killing adoptable dogs and cats at an average of over 30 pets/week.”
The Humane Society of the U.S. (HSUS) is often characterized as “PETA in a business suit,” and although it appears to be less radical in its tactics than PETA, HSUS’s multi-million-dollar annual budget isn’t saving many dogs or cats either.
Winograd is an advocate for the “No Kill Equation” model for animal shelters, which seeks to offer care to animals that can potentially be adopted. According to Winograd, “Through the No Kill Equation, every healthy and treatable animal entering a shelter can have a new beginning instead of the end of the line they face, if those shelters commit themselves wholeheartedly to building the infrastructure necessary to create and sustain a No Kill nation.”
He says that today many shelters can save 90-99% of the animals in their care, while other shelters are killing up to 99% of the animals they house in their facilities. How can this be? And why?
Winograd writes, “Can anyone with even a hint of compassion actually say it is better to kill baby kittens than bottle-feed them? Kill animals rather than promote adoptions? Kill animals rather than work with rescue groups? Of course not, especially since implementing alternatives to killing is more cost-effective, and in many cases, cheaper than killing animals. Tragically, however, many shelter directors have decided that it is better to kill baby kittens, to kill animals despite rescue groups ready, willing and able to save them, and to kill animals rather than keeping them alive long enough to find homes. In fact, some shelters have no adoption hours, are not open to the public for adoptions, and refuse to do any adoptions, choosing to kill the animals instead.”
Winograd says there’s a proven alternative that isn’t difficult, expensive or impractical to employ, and that should be promoted by the nation’s large national animal protection groups.
“But they are not. Instead, after admitting that these programs are crucial to save lives, they tell shelters that not only do they ‘remain at the discretion of each community to choose whether and how to implement,’ but that they should not be criticized for refusing to do so, while millions of animals continue to lose their lives in shelters every year precisely because those shelters have chosen not to. Worse, they tell activists that they should not try to force shelters to implement those programs, even though doing so would save the lives of the animals they are currently killing. In other words, HSUS is telling shelters these programs are necessary to save lives, but they do not have to do them and can choose to kill the animals instead.”
Winograd says such policy changes in places like California have resulted in a 370% increase in shelter-animal adoptions, at no cost to taxpayers. Yet, HSUS opposed these laws and endorsed a rollback of the rule in California when it was proposed. Why? How does that make sense? It just shows to me that HSUS isn’t even bothering to hide its true colors anymore. This wolf in sheep’s clothing has dropped its camouflage and exposed its claws and fangs. Plain and simple, they are after your dollar and not much else.
At face value, this article about animal shelters doesn’t appear to have anything to do with livestock producers. However, I urge you to think critically about how this can impact your livelihoods. If HSUS and PETA are no longer even trying to pretend to care about dogs and cats, what do you think they are busy doing instead? Animal agriculture has had a target on its back for many years now, and it’s no secret that HSUS would love to abolish animal agriculture and promote a vegan society, if given the chance.
Are you outraged at the level of euthanasia in pet shelters? Why do you think so many people willingly send money to support HSUS and PETA? Do you think these groups are direct threats to animal agriculture?