It is gone.
Let me tell you.
Romance is gone because it is breeding time on the farm and there are no bulls to be found.
None. Zero. Zilch.
So what does one do when there is no romance? Lets begin with a little story.
Once upon a time a male cow and a female cow meet in the pasture and fell in love……………….woops!! Sorry, wrong story.
Once upon a time a group of heifers were looking to have babies of their own. They searched the pasture for a nice male cow, (Bull) who would be willing to be the father of their calves. But, alas, there was not a Bull to be found! What were the heifers to do? Wait! Who do they see coming? It is the Breeder with his Artificial Insemination Barn (A.I. Barn)! He will save the day!
(Now I am writing this with the assumption that all of my readers know how babies are made and how they are born. If you do not, go and ask your parents. I have not yet had to have that conversation with my children, so I am not going to have it with you.)
What I am going to tell you about is the lack of “romance” when it comes to breeding and what a really messy, dirty job it is getting your cows/heifers bred. For you see, I feel that this is a subject that has not been addressed enough in this world and I am going to change that! Because I can! (Also not only are we breeding now, but I am also going through an Artificial Insemination class and learning lots of new things that I wanted to share. Yay for you!)
So let us begin with a few little known facts about AI’ing your cattle.
- Cattle poop. A lot and it gets everywhere and on everything. Be sure to dress for the fact that you are going to get manure on you. Coveralls, boots and old clothing are HIGHLY recommended when you are AI’ing cattle.
- Cut your finger nails short and leave your rings and watches at the house. You will have on a long plastic glove and you do not want the plastic glove to rip or tear while you have your hand/arm inside a mama cow. Yes, your arm goes in the cow. Again, go and ask your parents if you have any questions. A ring or watch can also become lost. Use your imagination!
- Paper towels, you can never have to many! Certain areas of the mama cow need to be clean, so paper towels are your friend
- A great facility makes the whole process that much better and faster! We actually use a portable barn that is just for AI’ing cattle. It is amazing what others think of and we get to utilize!
- Semen, yes I said it, has to be kept cold. Very, very, very cold. Dry ice/liquid nitrogen cold. So, when you go to pull the little tubes of semen out of a semen tank, they will be cold! The, so cold it burns the tips of your fingers, kind of cold. BE CAREFUL!
- Not all cows are appreciative of the fact that you are trying to make them a mama. Remember they have instincts like you and me and those do not include a hand/arm inside of ones body. Just be calm and quite when you are working around them and things tend to go well.
- The cervix is very, very important!! You have to find it inside of the cow before you can successfully breed the cow. You can not stick your head in there and take a look. You have to find it by feeling for it. Another reason to want a long plastic glove.
- Just like cows look different on the outside, they “look” different on the inside too. Enough said I do believe.
- Cows also have tails. Long tails that can whack you upside the head before you know it
- And finally the last little know fact for you about AI’ing is, it takes practice!! Lots and lots and lots of practice.
See how there is no “romance”. None. It just is not there.
There is nothing romantic about your hand and arm being shoved inside of a cow. There is nothing romantic about getting poop all over your clothing and boots. Nor is there anything romantic about the smell you will experience or the fact that you might get hit in the head with a flying tail.
But, and this is a very BIG but, there is a lot of LOVE when it comes to AI’ing ones cattle. For there does not need to be romance to experience love. For an average person is not going to go outside on a cold, foggy day at the first of December just to look at some cows. An average person who happens to be the farmer/rancher who owns those cows and loves them and the work that goes into taking care of them will indeed go out on any given day and see his cows.
Don’t worry! More to come about Artificial Insemination School and breeding days! Get excited! It can only get better from here, right?????
Blessings to you and all who have learned the art of AI’ing cattle,
Laurie – Country Link