My aunt and I went to the vet yesterday because we were worried that the cow that recently gave birth is slowly draining her milk. I noticed that her udder (boob) isn’t as big as it normally should be especially just a week after giving birth. I was never a farm guy but I knew it didn’t look right. The vet told me that many cow and pig owners have the same problem. It was mostly due to heat. She offered me Thyrolac which costed P255 (no I’m not promoting the product). We started giving it to her yesterday. We mix 1.5 tablespoon of Thyrolac with cattle feeds once per day. I’m not sure how long it’s going to take for her to start producing milk again. I also bought Afsillin Improved Multivitamins which costed P150 (again not promoting anything). Results to follow in another blog post.
We just got home. My aunt’s cow gave birth to a baby boy about an hour and a half ago. It’s truly an experience to witness a calf being born. She has been on labor since Sunday afternoon and boy was she very tensed. She’s been walking around in circles non-stop but thankfully her agony finally ended tonight. We were in the farm this afternoon when I saw her water broke and we knew it was only a matter of hours until she gave birth so we decided to wait it out. Anyway, she gave birth just after we ate dinner and the feeling was just out of this world when we saw the baby come out (Is that how it feels being a dad/mom?… FYI I’m only 23). She went licking her baby and at the same time he was trying to stand up (but couldn’t) while we all watched in amazement. It’s a bit late and I’m tired so here’s a picture I took earlier. As they say, they speak a thousand words. I will let it speak for itself.
Yesterday, I went to the Department of Agriculture at the local municipal’s office to have the ownership title of the cattle transferred to my name. I figured I’ve spent quite a bit of money to acquire these animals, then I might as well get everything right.
The first step to getting the cattle (I just learned today that the plural for cattle is also “cattle”) properly documented was to get them branded or “hero” in tagalog. Branding is the process of using a hot iron to burn a permanent mark into the hide of an animal. I know it would be painful for the cattle but it is what we have to do so I gave the guy a heads up and get on with the process. We decided not the brand the 5-month old because she is too small and too young. To my surprise, it looked like the pain was tolerable. We had to brand both the left and the right sides. On the right side was the brand of the municipality, and on the left was brand of the owner. Mine was a simple “AB” which are initials for the town where I live but I plan on having a custom one made with my “EG” initials (for bragging rights, of course!). After branding was done, we had to fill out a form called “Certificate of Ownership of Large Cattle” (Katibayan ng Pagmamay-ari ng Malaking Baka). At the front is the usual ‘fill it up with your name and information’ and at the back is where we outlined the marks engraved on the cow. The process took less than 15 minutes for two cattle and cost was P50 per head. I understand P50 is still a lot for many, but is it not worth the ease when you lose the cows (which I hope doesn’t happen)? Having said that, I haven’t seen other branded cattle except for mine so they will be easier to identify.
Welcome to my blog. Just last week, I finally decided I would take the leap and buy three cattles and I plan on keeping a detailed post of my journey along the way. Hopefully this will also serve as a guide to many Filipinos who are thinking about having cattles of their own but don’t have a clue on the process. Anyway, according to the agent, they are a mixed breed of Brahman and Zobel (from Calatagan, Batangas, Philippines). Being naive as I am, I decided to take his word for what it’s worth. Two of them are around 1.5 years old, and the other one is around 5 months – all females – with the purpose of breeding. The mother of my 5-month old lost her milk so the previous owner taught her how to eat grass and feeds. Their diet consists of grass and feeds which are given twice a day.
My main goal is to learn how to properly raise and successfully breed them to a point where I can eventually call my three-cow farm a “ranch”. My plan is to successfully breed them with pure Brahmans but I’m still in the early stages of my journey so we’ll see how things go.
Here are some pics of my new crew! Sit back, relax, and enjoy the ride!
PS. – This blog will also include posts about goats and vegetable farming, but majority of the posts will be on cattles/cows.