Oh Thelma! It was the week of the county fair, that time of year that I end up completely ignoring household duties and spend all of my energy at the fair. I had picked Monday as the day that Sweet Caroline would have her calf. Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, nothing. Thursday morning Mike went out to take care of morning chores and the phone rang. The only time the phone rings that early in the morning is when Mike is calling from the barn.
“You’d better come out here!”
I was out the door in my flip flops, bathrobe and work gloves. I’ve learned to always go right away and always bring gloves. I have yet to get the proper footwear to sink in to the process. This is it! Caroline is finally calving! I rushed in to the barn and there she was, big, uncomfortable and pregnant. I found Mike out by the corral gate, on the other side was the rest of the herd eating their breakfast same as any other morning.
Caroline followed me out of the barn and there the three of us stood looking through the gate at a little black calf that was born within the last few hours.
“Are you kidding me?!”
“Nope! I thought it was Margo until I saw her over there.”
It had to be Wheezy’s. Wheezy (Louise) the non-pregnant cow that was scheduled to go to butcher the next week. She was supposed to calve this spring and never did. She showed every sign except a calf and then seemed to shrink back down. We figured she lost her calf. She’s got a record of losing every other calf it seems.
It was a healthy looking heifer. Thelma. It was a few days later before Mike was able to separate her from Wheezy and we gave her a little better check over. She’s a strong, wild little thing. Looks like she’s got horns like her mama’s coming.
Wheezy’s appointment with the butcher has postponed until mid-winter so she can properly take care of Thelma. I will be glad to see her go because she is a feisty cow that isn’t afraid to use her horns. On the other hand I do like having her around because if we needed a surrogate mother she would easily be it. She is a very good mother and has been willing to take care of calves that weren’t hers in the past. It’s nice to have that security even though I would hope to never need it.