Friday, March 30, 2012

Branding postponed to April 7th

We've had quite the storm move in over the last day or so and the forecast for the weekend is rain, rain, rain so we've decided to bump branding to next weekend on Saturday, April 7th. We don't have too many calves to do and should be wrapped up by 2pm.

How Stuff Works: What can't you brand calves in the rain?
Other than the people being all wet and soggy, branding calves when it is raining or has been raining is not a good idea. Traditionally a hot iron brand is quickly placed on the side of the calf which cauterizes the skin and burns the hair off. If the calf's coat is all wet, the hot iron will instantly turn that surrounding moisture to super-heated steam which can create large areas of superficial burns on the poor little calf.

Hopefully we will have better weather next weekend but if it is still raining we will cover the branding table with a tarp, shave the area to be branded and towel-dry to minimize any potential for steam burns. It takes longer, but branding is already hard enough on the calves - no sense in inflicting any more trauma than is absolutely necessary.

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