We have spent the past few days processing calves. This is a common job for us, one that we do frequently and the kids all get to help out. The best part is gathering the calves, because any job you get to do horseback is automatically the best part of the day. Just ask my kids, they know it’s worth rolling out of bed early if it means they can spend the morning riding their horse.
Once we get the calves to the corral, we get busy processing. All of the kids know what their job is and usually* they jump in and get to work. (*when you have a twelve year old on your crew there is always some drama involved, which prevents any work from getting done expediently. Can anyone else relate to this phenomenon?)
My husband and I get the vaccines ready, the kids gather rattle paddles, drinks and snacks. Soon we are loading the alley with calves and processing begins. My older boys bring calves into the tub at the end of the alley and then re-load the alley as needed. My daughter keeps the calves walking through the alley and into the chute. My husband and I give the vaccinations. Each calf gets a couple of shots, one for pink eye (which has been prevalent in our area recently) and the other to help prevent respiratory diseases.
My youngest is tasked with the premiere job: sitting in the Gator, taking photos and distributing snacks or drinks as needed.