Wednesday, March 21, 2012

March Heat Wave Causes Stress in Farm Animals

75 degrees.

Unusual weather for us.  The warm weather with these temperatures usually don't arrive in two week stretches until mid May.  Then it can spring literally into summer.

The length of daylight hours normally dictate the shedding of an equine and a bovine.  Our animals seemed to suffer from lack of shade under the leafless trees and from the high heat and humidity while having full winter coats.

I walked around the place today looking at our different animals and could see that some of them were suffering from heat stress.  It doesn't look dangerous, but it does make one wonder if you could make them more comfortable.

I thought about doing a body clip, but since most of these animals are pastured I don't think this is a good choice.  
It is only the 21st of March and we could get some very cold temperatures yet.

The fluctuation of temperatures has also made me wonder how the animal's health could be affected in other ways, such as respiratory infections.

Badger is dealing fairly well with the temperatures, he had a couple of bad days when it was particularly dusty and windy.  He appeared rather miserable and seemed to come out of it a bit when we had some rain to settle the dust.
Although at this time I don't think I can exercise him safely unless it is taking him literally for a walk on a lead line.

I love the warmer weather, don't get me wrong. 
It just seems to be causing a little stress in my much beloved animals.

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