Finding a livestock vet can be grueling especially if you have small animals, and only a few. Right now we have five milking nannies, one buck, 1 yearling doe, 8 kids, four ewes and 6 lambs, four pigs, and about 130 chickens of various ages and breeds. This list could be why so many vets have said, I can’t help you. Is it too diverse? Should we need to have 100 head of cattle to make your trip worth while? How about if we just raised chickens, or pigs, or goats or sheep? Maybe I can find an egg laying dog and just make the whole thing much easier!
Dr. Michelle Anderson is a diamond in the ruff, and a Godsend to us. We have a standing yearly appointment with her to make sure that all of our animals are happy and healthy. We are also coached by her along the way to make sure that we are doing all of the right things to keep it that way. Dr. Anderson has taught me so much about livestock health. She has instructed me on giving tetnus shots, the life cycle of a parasite, nutritional requirements and infection prevention. She also has shown me how to castrate and dehorn in the safest, mildest way, train my goats how to not kick me while I’m milking them, and handle my sheep so they respond to guidance.
Dr. Anderson is also working with us on our raw milk certification for the goats and sheep. A vet that does all of this for their clients is PRICELESS!!!! And even though her value is far beyond what I could ever afford, she still only charges a very minimal fee for her work. Infact, she will tell us if there are state programs to cover the costs of testing for milk permits, just to save us a little money.
My animals are very healthy, but I know that if I had any other vet, that wouldn’t be the case. Dr. Anderson is in every way a teacher of good things for the farmer and the animals. When looking for a vet, consider this post. Remember to ask your vet if there are things that you can improve on. It is horrible to have an emergency with pets and animals. If you are armed with a good animal first aid kit, and the right knowledge, you may only need an annual well check too!