So 'the calf' who was born in the cold during our Christmas Supper ... remained days without a name.
I am often hesitant about giving a name to a critter that ... well, simply put, should not survive.
Yes we already established that this young heifer had been penned with a young bull and had not been separated before what we felt would be active breeding time.
Well, we were very wrong!
I did not feel confident that without bringing the calf into the house and giving it milk replacer that I'd be able to keep it alive. The little guy was cute. All animal babies are cute.
My Kenosha Gang showed up Friday evening and we put together a heat lamp and made the little pen a bit cozier by putting plywood around it to keep the heat in and the cold air out. Well, that was the idea.
The little guy seemed okay but would sleep in one corner or another and would shiver a bit. When he was up and nursing he seemed fine.
Well I bedded them heavier with shavings, I have been cleaning their little pen each day and putting in fresh pine shavings.
I'm sure Stella would say thanks, but she is more interested in water and in hay. She does stop occasionally to pull my gloves off my hands.
The heat lamp and bedding really helped a lot. Mother Nature took its course and Stella was nursing him very well. He found the best way to nurse was to go directly under the tail.
I tried to tell the calf that perhaps one day he'd not want to do that.
He didn't listen to me at all.
While I was cleaning the stall and making arrangements on Friday before our next house guests arrived, I found myself talking to the calf and Stella while working on their little pen.
I called the calf 'Hank'. He looked like a Hank. And it stuck.
Welcome to the farm 'Hank' The Sir Prize little Dexter!
The temperatures were forecast to drop well below zero on New Years Eve. Daryl had brought a small heater and he set it up. New Years Eve we'd thought we'd do all sorts of fun things.
But Hank ended up as the main attraction. With the temperatures falling well below -12 F and the wind chills a sinister -33 or so, ... we opted for no night hike. However everyone took turns checking on Hank.
It didn't matter if it took several minutes to wrap up and put on facemaskes, heavy gloves, boots, coveralls,.... we all had to see Hank.
Yes. The Hank has defied the odds and continues to grow like a little weed.
He sometimes thinks he is a Big Boy...well, not quite yet!
However, he is doing great.
What a wonderful thing to happen on our little farm to give us hope and and joy for the New Year.