The other day I managed to have an OOPE day. We were bangs vaccinating our young heifers… or brucellosis vaccinating. For those of you who don’t know, brucellosis is a contagious disease that causes abortion in cattle. Female cattle must be proven to have had the vaccination at the time of sale. To do this, a veterinarian tattoos the right ear and clips on a metal tag with an individual number when he vaccinates them. If vets at the sale barn can’t see the tattoo and/or the metal tag on sale day, the cows’ blood must be drawn and tested to make sure they’re OK. Wyoming has a big problem with maintaining its brucellosis-free status due to the brucellosis in wild elk and bison in Yellowstone National Park and surrounding areas. It is a matter of contention here in the Cowboy State! I could go into that controversy, but you don’t read this to learn of my politics, so we’ll just continue on with the day…
The heifer is sorted out of our corral and into the scale pen. You can’t tell, but this is actually a scale and we are weighing her. My father-in-law, Johnny, is in the red little scale house next to this, busy writing down her number and weight. This weight will go onto her record and help us choose her (or not) later on in her life to be a replacement in our herd or go to the sale barn.
I didn’t take a photo of Johnny inside… but I took a lot of Lucas and Dally in the doorway of the scale house! I tell them to go lay down, we don’t need their help with this, so it’s a good place to have them go… and evidently it’s better on this nice day to be in the cold scale house than outside in the sun despite the snow!
Sometimes, the dogs hear us make more noise than usual and they come out to watch/help and then I tell them to LAY DOWN so they’re not a threat to the heifers and scare/stress/panic them.
Next, I open the gate and feed her into the alley that leads to the squeeze chute.
The alley curves to keep the cattle from balking and backing up…kinda like, “Gee, what’s around the corner??? Where did my friend go? I just saw her tail…”
Daniel and the Good Doctor run the squeeze chute while Daniel’s friend S. checks ear tag numbers and writes down the bangs tag number for the record. She also urges them up the alley, but these gals go pretty good, so most just walk on through.
S. did a great job… believe me, you can get confused and discombobulated doing this, so she did well. She’s not a ranch kid, but very willing to get in and help despite the amount of poo and goo around here that puts off a lot of girls! And to be honest, this wasn’t a real OOPE photo… I had to pick up the camera to get it over the chute and take her picture. I just HAD to show off her gloves… how classy! I bet it’s the first time leopard print gloves have been used in this corral! 😉 Good job, S.!
Daniel and the Good Doctor shared plenty of stories while they did their respective jobs. Daniel applied some pour on wormer… the Good Doctor vaccinated the heifers. Oh, by the by, Good Doctor, don’t forget I won 3 meals at the local restaurant by answering your trivia questions for the day! 😉 (I knew the capital of Iceland… what Volkswagen translates as… and what famous person took part in the development of the Volkswagen)
That’s it… you’ve now participated in my Bangs OOPE. Thanks for coming… and trivia for you… Do you know how Brucellosis (aka Bangs) got their names???
la la la la la la la….
Yep, you’re right! From Dr. Bruce and Dr. Bangs who discovered/studied the disease.