Many people view spring as a season of rejuvenation. Flowers and trees are beautifully blooming, brightening our wonderful world. The weather begins to warm from the winter of snow and animals emerge from their winter-long slumber.
Basically, spring feels similar to the start of the new year.
On the farm, spring means preparing the land for our crops to be planted and welcoming sweet baby calves into the world. As I was home over spring break, I was able to interact with all of the cute new babies. Let me tell you, they are as spunky as ever!
Running around the farm and kicking their heels up is just the beginning when it comes to their personalities. Each calf has his or her own temperament and they are not afraid to show it.
For instance, one of our cows gave birth to twins and those two babies are polar opposites. One of the calves has to be bottle fed since the mother didn't accept him. This caused him to not only be very independent, but also obtain the trait of being sassy.
No matter their personality, each cow/calf pair on the Ahrendsen farm is so deeply loved.
Checking cows with my family and bottle-feeding the sweet twin calf made me really appreciate where my passion for animals stemmed from when I was a young girl.
I can remember when I was a little 4-Her, dreaming of the perfect bucket-bottle calf to show at our county fair. My parents were willing to give me the opportunity to exhibit bucket-bottle calves for the majority of my 4-H experience and I couldn't be more grateful.
My dedication and understanding for animals sparked from my newfound interest in exhibiting livestock. Still to this day, these memories resonate with me and I'm drawn to the lovely livestock that surround our farmstead.
Now, calving season isn't always perfect. The good, the bad, and even the ugly can occur when cows go into labor. Much like humans, some baby calves may be breeched in their mother's stomach. This can cause the birthing process to not only become more stressful, but can make the mother feel much more pain.
For example, one of my favorite cows (Lucy) had this happen to her last year. Luckily, with the help of our local veterinarians we were able to ensure that both the mother and baby made it out happy and healthy.
Nonetheless, with all the ups and downs that comes with calves entering into this world, nothing beats watching their wobbly legs walk for the first time. Their sweet faces and spunky attitudes can be the biggest day brightener to so many. And I cannot wait to come back home and watch them grow as time goes on.