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New Year’s Resolutions for Barn Owners

January 1 2021

Happy New Year! As we leave 2020 behind and move forward into 2021, many people are focusing on making resolutions. If you have a stable or barn, read on! A Westminster, MD veterinarian suggests a few things you can do to improve your property below.

Identify And Remove Toxic Plants

This is one area that is often overlooked. You definitely don’t want to learn this lesson the hard way. While many animals will naturally avoid eating things that are dangerous to them, if your pasture or paddocks have been overgrazed, then they will be more likely. Some will also try anything just out of curiosity. You can check the ASPCA site here for a list of suggestions. Or, look for local resources. If you identify and remove things, be sure to take the root, so it doesn’t grow back.

Build A Catch Pen

Catch pens aren’t only useful for catching. For instance, they can also be used to separate and feed animals who are either getting shoved away from the trough or have specific dietary needs.

Test Your Pasturage

Has it been a while since you’ve had your pasture checked? If so, this is a good thing to put on your to-do list. Knowing the quality of your land is key to making sure that you’re feeding your animals the proper type and amounts of hay and grain.

Adopt A Barn Cat

Many stray and even feral cats make great barn pets. Fluffy will help keep mice and rodents away, in exchange for food, shelter, and basic veterinary care. Plus, cats just make everything better.

Improve Drainage

Occasional mud is pretty much par for the course in barns. However, ongoing drainage issues are a whole other issue. Animals can get quite sick from spending too much time in wet conditions! If you have problem areas, consult a professional. In many cases, even a few basic swale can help.

Give Back

2020 was a rough year, but one bright point was that it did bring many communities closer together. Consider doing something for your local community. This can be giving away fresh produce, getting involved with 4H clubs, doing virtual kids’ meet and greets with your animals, or just putting some cheerful or inspiring signs up. Every little bit helps!

As your Westminster, MD veterinary clinic, we are always here to help. Contact us anytime!