Natural weaning

Monday, February 22, 2016 Weaning. It’s that time of year when the babies born last summer will be weaned. Many farms put the little ones in a pen or area separated from mom, or put mom somewhere else, or generally separate the two. We used to do that too. Babies would cry, moms would sometimes show distress and it made me very sad too. But for the last 10 or more years, we just let mom do it.  So much easier!  It’s actually quite fascinating to watch. Its a very gradual process and most often the mom will just sit down so her udder is not available when the baby asks to nurse. Some will kick at the cria, but it’s all pretty gentle and best of all, baby knows 100% of the time what mom is saying! Of course the little boys are eventually moved to the male area, but the ‘closing of the milk bar’ has been taken care of by mom. Since we no longer show our babies, there is no rush and I have never had to intervene once since we’ve switched to the natural method. We also don’t have the problem of the one year old girl trying to steal the newer babies’ milk when she is introduced to the same pasture as the mom, because mom already told her the milk barn is closed and she got the message. 

Photo of the day: Patchouli and her boy Galahad.  She just sat down when he tried to nurse, but he still gets to enjoy her company.natural-weaning

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