Are you getting tired of seeing pictures of wooly sheep in the snow? I’d planned to start shearing beginning of March but I’m going to put it off until the snow is melted and temps come up above freezing. Since we aren’t expecting lambs this year there is no huge rush to get them sheared early. I’m tired of cold weather, but at least the snow is pretty.
People keep asking for more pictures of Schnitzel. Well, we haven’t had many pictures of her to share because if there is snow on the ground she prefers not to go out in it. Which means she has more or less spent the last month and a half in her shed, buried under a pile of hay. But we are finally starting to thaw out and had a “warm” day today with a couple of hours of sunshine before the rain came in and we all, Schnitzel included, took the opportunity to get fresh air and sunshine!
More friends for Schnitzel
Yesterday we had a very successful trip out with Schnitzel. We went for a car ride down to Country Boy Brewery and had quesodillas and beers and made some new friends. The crowded bar with loud talking and slipper floors was too scary to go in for more than a few minutes, but outside it was calmer and everyone had a nice time. We were sitting near the entry door so Schnitzel got to greet everyone as they came and went. Several people mistook her for a dog…until she oinked!
After dinner we came home and Schnitzel got to meet our good friend Alicia for the first time. Alicia owns pugs and says that a little black pig is almost exactly the same as a fat black pug– both live to eat, grunt all the time and love having their bellies rubbed.
Schnitzel got in and our of the car several times using a ramp, walked around on her leash without making a fuss, even when her leash got tangled around the picnic table legs, and met lots of new people, smells and sounds. She did great! The only time she got upset was when we tried going inside (it was just too much too fast). She did try to bite a friendly pit bull a couple of times but we think it was her attempt at playing. Unfortunately, biting strange dogs- even in a playful manner- can’t be allowed!
All in all I think Schnitzel had a great night. We need to find more pig-friendly places to take her so that she can get more experience being used to crowds of people and unusual environments!
Just a normal Saturday on the farm…
I’ve got a bad cold so mostly what I did today was nap and drink hot tea. I did manage to squeeze in a couple of fun things though. My mom was visiting for the weekend so she helped out.
First, we took Schnitzel for a nice long walk around the neighborhood and met several of our neighbors, including a couple of sweet little girls. Schnitzel loves everyone she meets, even the cat (but the cat wasn’t so sure about her).
She was so good on her walk, even when we had to tug on her leash to get her to leave a new friend or ignore something in the road. We decided to reward her with a special treat- ice cream! So we hopped in the car and went down to Brusters, a local ice cream place that I sometimes take the dog to since they have little bowls of doggy ice cream (and really yummy human ice cream). Turns out, Schnitzel loves ice cream. She was very well behaved on the ride (she sat in my lap while mom drove), perfect on her leash walking across the parking lot and sweet to the people she met on the patio while we ate. After a disastrous visit to Country Boy earlier in the week it was very encouraging to have such a positive visit!
On our way to the ice cream place we had to drive by our friend’s goat farm so we brought Ivy with us and dropped her off on the way. My friend, Mr Savage, had stopped by the day before to let us know he’d gotten a new billy goat and we were welcome to bring Ivy over anytime for breeding. We’d tried breeding her last year but the billy he had at the time turned out to be a bit of a dud. We had immediate success with the new buck, though! I guess Ivy must have already been in heat because as soon as they were introduced he started showing signs of interest and while we watched he started to um, get the job done. We were surprised because goats only go into heat once every two weeks so we didn’t expect her to be in heat that particular day. If a female isn’t in heat, she won’t stand still for the buck to mount her. Hopefully everything “took” today and we’ll have kids around March 11th. We are going to let her stay with her new friend for a little while longer just to make sure the job got done. Ivy is a Nubian goat which is a dairy breed so once she has kids we’ll be able to milk her and use the milk to make cheese. I can’t wait!
WARNING: before you click “play”, this video is a little graphic and you might not want to play it at work or in front of small children, at least not without an explanation prepared ahead of time.
The Making of a Mascot
Schnitzel’s destiny is to be the Country Boy Brewing mascot and ambassador. But before she can take on that high and mighty honor, she has to be transformed from a muddy ol’ farm pig to something a bit more presentable.
First, she has to work on her people skills. No nipping or squealing but lots of sloppy kisses for everyone.
Next, the dreaded leash and harness. She doesn’t have to like them, but she has to learn to put up with them. No visiting crowded bars or festivals without a leash.
Finally, a fetching outfit. Just gotta add the logo to the t-shirt and we’ll be all set!
I think someone has earned a nice, cold beer, what about you?
I know its been a while since I last posted. The summer was great but, after the Great Chicken Massacre of 2013, pretty low key.
Today we added a new resident to the farm- Schnitzel the pot bellied pig. Schnitzel is a little girl and about 4 months old. Even though she is young, she already has a job. She is the official mascot of Country Boy Brewing. Since the brewery is downtown, she is living with us but– once she has been trained a bit more– she will be visiting the brewery’s outside patio and maybe going to events to meet and greet her fans.
We have her in a temporary pig run right now so that she can root around in the garden. We will be tilling it under soon and planting winter wheat but until then she is enjoying rooting through the loose soil and eating the bits of plant left in the garden. She also has access to the space under the chicken coop and several trees for shade. Eventually we plan to build her a stall in the barn with a run in the pasture. Since our goal is to have her well socialized and trained, she will also be spending plenty of time hanging out with me in the yard. Only with supervision though since she’s already shown us how much she likes to uproot things!
By the time we got her settled in this evening it was too dark to take decent photos, but I took some blurry ones anyway. She seems happy with her new home, even though she isn’t a fan of the electric fencing. A pizza crust and some good scratches helped her forget all about the shock she got to her nose!