Archive for the ‘Nutrition’ Category

Ah…alas…Tammy and the cowdogs are still here. We never left. We never quit. We are still raising retained ownership feeder cattle and feeding cattle in SW Nebraska. We are still AI’ing SimAngus cows…reds and blacks. We are still calving in Autumn. Puppies are still being raised. Young cowdogs are still being shown around the place to let them grow up into working cowdogs. We still gather cattle from pastures, bring them home to the working facilities on the various locations/pastures, and we still sort and process cattle.

What has changed? Well, in September of 2015, the matriarch of Tammy’s cowdogs passed away. Cowdog Hawk joined Cowdog Bert and they met up again in the loving and peaceful arms of God in heaven. Even though the sun still came and went each day, the sense of a normal life was completely shattered. A month later, I had to put down my oldest horse friend…Eight  2015 was just a bad year. Yet, despite the terrible hands dealt I carried on with raising planned litters of cowdog pups for my customers. Nineteen young cowdogs were started and moved along to their new working ranch homes. All the life of 2015 went on without broadcasting fanfare. There was too much work to do to spend time in the broadcasting booth.

I made a decision to lessen my work of keeping four written updates going on at the same time. With all the technology in our lives I was being buried for hours with keeping up to the minute with everything “techie”. Cell phone ringing, cell phone messages chirping notifications to me, text messages coming in, email notes flying through the cyber air, landline phone stacking up with voicemail messages, Facebook (FB) hack attacks messing with my oldest Facebook timeline, Facebook hackers to my Tammy’s Cowdogs FB page, FB automatically transitioning my FB timeline to a second FB page (without notice),and FB denying my access to my own FB pages. My website blog (here) being facilitated by WordPress and WordPress not being totally compatible with FB and posts and pictures being lost in thin air. My nine year old smart phone took a death fall and cracked up on a sharp rock in October 2015 and after four months of limping along with a cracked phone screen I bit the bullet in January 2016 and took a day off to go get a new smart phone. Low and behold, the AT&T techs could not get my email to work on my “smart phone” and I am into August 2016 and still do not have email on my smart phone. But hey! Life has gone on without email on my smart phone. I mention all this trivial stuff because I made the decision to lesson my work. Being a slave to gadgets beeping and collecting requests from folks was just a full-time job and there wasn’t time left for me.

I maintain a FB presence on a daily basis. FB is simple, easy, sometimes cranky, yet it is the ease of use that has trumped all the other technological accesses to my ranching and cowdog business life. During the fall of 2015, I transitioned all my contact information to an office address and set the wheels in motion to nix the landline. My posting to my blog (here) was suspended when Hawk died. Even with a narrowed up social media presence I still have to spend a few hours a day or night to visit with folks on a one-on-one basis. The Spring litter of pups came and have left.The Fall litters of pups will be here soon and they are all sold. The started cowdogs being worked with are sold and will leave once I get through with Fall calving and early Winter CIDR/AI work. So, as usual, I am sold out of pups and young started cowdogs for the remainder of 2016. Life does go on. It doesn’t end until God calls us home.

I am very lucky to have such a solid customer base for my cowdog program and for the cattle program that we work with each day. It has been a long, hot, humid summer in 2016 and it will be a welcomed relief to have some rain show up to grow grass and hopefully put the pastures in better condition before going into Winter.

If you want to follow along on what goes on here each day please consider trailing along on Facebook. Facebook is easy to use and you can limit your social exposure by being selective in creating a list of folks to follow on Facebook. Here is the link to my Facebook timeline… https://www.facebook.com/TammyJCowdogGoldammer . You should be able to copy this link, paste the link into your browser, and get routed directly to logging in to your Facebook account or if you are currently on Facebook the link will take you to the Facebook site of Tammy Goldammer. You can also find Facebook pages Tammy’s Cowdogs and Tammy’s Cowdogs Page. The pages are not updated each day simply because I just don’t keep them linked. When things go haywire with FB automatic linking then I just let it go and move on. So, the best bet until I mentally make up my mind to tackle all the technological snafus is to just search Facebook for Tammy Goldammer.

Anyway. Tammy and the cowdogs are still here…working…taking life a day at a time…and planning on our future of tomorrows. The retained ownership cattle business has one certainty, “What I do today is how prepared I will be for 15-18 months from now.”

#hangintreecowdogs #TammysCowdogs #RockOnRanching

2015 Collage.jpg

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FB Post…
Sunday, August 16, 2015, 2:12 PM
~~ Dogfood Dilemma is Over ~~
Since 2002, I have primarily been a PMI Exclusive dog food user. One winter, the Purina staff came out and wanted to reformulate their PMI dog food line and I had an ideal set-up plus had been asking about including probiotics or protein/carbohydrate digesting enhancers in their top of the line dog food. All was good until the contract for the manufacturing of the dry food was changed to a different company/set of companies. Some of the sourcing of the ingredient suppliers changed as well. ADM had approached me to help them with a redo of their top of line dog food. I helped them too. Used their product until I began to notice issues with the dog poo, the dog eating habits, the lack of desire to eat. Turns out the company had made a change in the manufacturing entity and that entity was sourcing ingredients which while labeled “the same” were definitely “not the same”. The animals used in the dog food commodity were eating different rations/diets than the previous sources of dog food commodity ingredient suppliers. The end result was the poultry industry diets were different therefore the dog food industry products were now performing differently. That old saying, “You are what you eat” was letting the cat out of the sack. After several months of pleading, a ton of better dog food and then back to terrible dog food…I made a change. I spoke with a friend who raises sled dogs and runs in the circles of some of the winning teams and breeders for the Iditarod racing and other sled dog races. I contacted a company called “Redpaw”. Roots of this company were in Iowa, then moved many years ago to Wisconsin, and a company that did not start as a corporation but as a person with dog sled breeding and racing roots. I placed an order for the three products in these photos and got 3 ton of product in. Nearly 50 days later, I am completely sold on how the cowdogs are turning it around. Improved appetite and excited to be fed. They eat less. Their poop is spot-on healthy. Hair coat shows more sheen. But the greatest benefit so far in the regular working crew is their condition, stamina, heat tolerance and overall attitude change of being out traveling and working in the heat and humidity. All that said, I know that I am excited to see how the winter performance is going to be. A big shout-out to the company owner for his visits with me. A thank you to the distributor for Redpaw for setting my account up and for the excellent delivery service. What a relief to have a product line-up to test and to be happy with!

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Here on my blog, I am sharing some of my working ranch Facebook (FB) posts from Tammy’s Cowdogs FB Timeline. To view all of the photos, you can click on the blog story title or click on the FB icon. You may need to login to FB. The “Like” counts and the comments will not automatically update from FB back to my blog posts. So, if you want to see and read the current comments from folks you will probably have to login to FB and look up Tammy’s Cowdogs Timeline. The second FB site for Tammy’s Cowdogs is “Tammy’s Cowdogs Page”. Tammy’s Cowdogs Page is held for posting of cowdog sale information and it was created because my FB Timeline of Tammy’s Cowdogs is max’d out at the 5,000 Friends level. You should be able to still “Follow” my FB Timeline though.

The goal in sharing the FB posts back to my blog is to give more folks the opportunity to follow along on the daily ranch posts that I share on FB. I do not have all the bugs ironed out of the sharing between FB and my blog software so things may seem a bit redundant. It is a work in progress. The “Share” process should go from FB Tammy’s Cowdogs Timeline -> blog -> FB Tammy’s Cowdogs Page …lol…but the last “Share” step is not always happening. Technical glitch.

I give credit to my cowdog Mr. Bert for giving me a cattle & ranch life that was filled with joy and lots of good times processing cattle. And, I thank the Lord for his gift of a great cowdog that I found with my little puppy Mr. Bert. I wish each and every day that I still had Bert’s larger than life presence with me…walking around with me. But he is gone and I have learned to cope the last 4 and a 1/2 years to get things done with Bert & Hawk’s sons & daughters.

The 3-tier DNA testing of a bunch of purchased cowdogs, the research studies with advancing better dry dog food products, the pharmaceutical research studies involving internal and external parasite control…have all led to setting in place a cowdog breeding program that is based on “known” factors and genetics. Genetic profiles, nutritional standards and health management practices have been tested and allowed for no more guessing about what I might get from litter to litter. I am the same way with my retained ownership cattle program…19 years into a genetic program that creates high performance cattle raised on the pastures of central Missouri. Toss in years of below moisture and drought and you really get a feel for how your genetic strategies will or won’t work. No matter what you do with cattle…you still need air, water and grass to raise beef.

Thank you to all the folks that have visited and purchased cowdogs and pups from me during the last several years. I’ve met a lot of neat folks and been able to build a good base of repeat customers. The common goal for all the folks that I do business with is to have a good, dependable, reliable working cowdog. We are not about papering litters or cowdogs that can be used for trading or for creating litter after litter of pups to sell on the internet. We want a closed cowdog breeding program so that we can continue on with a known gene pool with solid results.

The training information which can be purchased via my website is still the book and DVD that was a part of my purchase of Charlie Trayer’s Trayers’ Cowdogs business (January 08, 2008). You can read more about that purchase here on my blog category of “Trayers’ Cowdogs”. If Mother Nature cooperates and there is good rainfall and pasture conditions in 2015, there may be time to update the book and the video. In the big picture, I own and operate a cow/calf operation and the daily work of the ranch uses the majority of my time.

Thank you for visiting my website, the blog and my FB sites. ~Tammy & the Cowdogs

#hangintreecowdogs #tammyscowdogs

Bert...Tribute to Bert...on my website Home/Welcome Page describes what my cowdog standards are for my working cowdogs.

Bert…Tribute to Bert…on my website Home/Welcome Page describes what my cowdog standards are for my working cowdogs.

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I know many of you have noticed that I stopped posting my new litters of puppies on my website “Blog” and my two Facebook sites…Tammy’s Cowdogs and my Tammy’s Cowdogs Page. I’ve posted before in all these locations about some of the reasons why I have stopped or limited my puppy postings. I have had a long waiting list for puppies over the last several years. I have let folks get on a waiting list with a deposit. My deposit policy is that I do not use a deposit “until” the person selects a puppy. The deposit simply stays on file after a receipt has been sent to the person who sent in the deposit. I have never seen a need to use a person’s deposit until they have selected a puppy. And that policy has not changed since 2007.

I really tightened up my cowdog breeding program after I purchased over a dozen outside cowdogs in Jan. 2008. The majority of those outside cowdogs did not pass my standards for breeding purposes. If they had genetic flaws, disposition flaws, temperament flaws, conformation flaws, attitude flaws, mental flaws, recessive gene flaws, basically any flaw, then those cowdogs just were of no value or use to me. The verification of those cowdogs’ relationships, sires, dams, brothers, sisters, etc. was put through a series of DNA tests to create and verify relationships and profiles. A few years ago, I stopped sending my litter information to sources outside of my own cowdog breeding program. And, through a lot of processes of elimination I have really narrowed up my gene pool and focused on matings that create a cowdog product that I like and want to use here on my cow/calf operation.

Having a closed cowdog breeding program has been very successful. And not sharing my pedigree information has nearly eliminated the use of my pedigree information for so-called registration purposes. As of September and October 2014, the internal squabbles and unrest of the registration services continues to be an issue and to be a part of the problems of those groups is not for me or my breeding program.

In 2013, I made a decision to not take anymore puppy deposits until I got my current waiting list folks taken care of. I am nearly caught up with my waiting list folks. And I really do appreciate all the folks that have wanted and waited for cowdogs and puppies from my program. I have to turn away a lot of folks simply because the list has been too long. It takes 4-6 litters per year to keep up with requests for puppies. And, I do not breed any female more than once per year. It simply is too hard on the females to put them through back-to-back pregnancies. I don’t treat them as puppy milling sisters. They are working cowdogs too and they cannot maintain peak body condition if they are always pregnant, nursing or raising puppies. Raising puppies requires a lot of time to manage things properly. And, I do not believe in having other folks raise the litters and ship the litters to me so that I always have puppies on hand to sell. Brokering, trading, swapping, milling is just not for me. I do not operate my retained ownership cowherd in that manner and I’m sure not going to pick up those practices for my cowdogs.

When I get my current waiting list folks taken care of, I am going to raise a few litters of pups out of my 3rd and 4th generation cowdogs and take in some new customers. In other words, I am not going to use my deposit process. The pups will be 1st come, 1st serve when I have litters available. I’ll see how that works for the beginning of 2015. I’ve got some pups that I have kept so that I could watch them grow and mature here. I’ll be starting these young cowdogs later on this winter after I get my AI work done in November and December. And, fingers crossed that we don’t have another winter of weeks and weeks of “Polar Vortex” weather. That darn weather sure puts a kink into time, the short winter days and the ability to train cowdogs when it is below zero. It is kind of like the amount of training that occurs when the temperatures are over 90F in the summer months. I don’t keep sheep or goats around for round pen training so when the weather is too cold, too hot, too dusty, too whatever…well, we don’t train during those extreme weather conditions.

First and foremost, this place is a cow/calf operation. The cowdog training takes place when we work cattle on cattle working days. I work alone and my help is my cowdog crews. I still give private training sessions to folks when time allows. Giving private lesson sessions seems to work really well because folks are more relaxed and at ease if other folks are not watching. The personal one-on-one time seems to work really well and allows for more questions and practice.

I post some sort of working cowdog or ranch work story every day on Facebook…just look for Tammy’s Cowdogs. My Tammy’s Cowdogs Page on Facebook is where my website Blog stories or posting will automatically post to. Well, sometimes it works and sometimes it does not. It is really easy to follow the daily postings, pictures or videos on Facebook and I have the site set up so that the postings are public to anyone and you do not have to have a “Friend” status. I am max’d out at the 5,000 Friends level but you can select to “Follow” the postings. Give it a try. Some folks don’t like Facebook but be like me and just use Facebook for things you are interested in and skip all the other stuff that is of no interest. That makes Facebook tolerable!

Thank you very much for following my website blog and give some thought to setting up a Facebook account. The cowdogs & I would love to have you along for our daily working ranch activities.

#hangintreecowdogs #tammyscowdogs

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I recently shipped two puppies via a commercial transportation service.  In the days following the puppies arrival at their new homes they began to go from extremely playful and eating very well to getting thin (dehydrated), not playful but just poking around and not eating their food as they had been the first several days they were at their new home.  One customer called me to let me know his pup was sick.  I asked him to call me as soon as he had the vet give him an indication of the pup’s problem. I called the second customer to alert them to the litter mate pup that had become ill.  I asked that he take the pup to his vet to have the pup checked for parvo or any other intestinal virus that they could sample for.  The second pup came back negative to anything so the person took his pup on home.  After a few days though, the pup began to show the same symptoms as pup #1.  I had taken my 4 littermates to the vet and had them tested for parvo and they were also negative.  The 5th pup at another location was doing fine…just like the 4 littermates at my place.

My pups receive 3 vaccinations for parvo before they leave here at 10 weeks of age.  Included in the last vaccination is the coronavirus.  I mention all this to you – my readers, customers and potential customers (and fellow breeders that read my blog to keep tabs on me!)  – so that you are aware of issues that pup’s face when they are commercially transported.  While the/some transportation services do/may/or don’t perform practices to keep viruses in check…this incident with my pups reminds us all that pups need to be watched closely when they arrive at their new homes.  A good practice is to keep your facilities/pens/kennels/water buckets/feed pans, etc. in constant “cleanliness mode” with soap and Clorox.  Coronavirus in all species of animals is generally not fatal…HOWEVER…it all depends on the tip-top health of the animals and whether or not they exhibit the clinical signs, or weaken to the point of death, or weaken to the point that an additional virus – such as parvo – is able to generate itself during the time of stress.  Coronavirus in cattle is generally not a life threatening experience…BUT…it sure can become rampant if left unattended and allowed to continually multiply itself from one calving season to another.  One thing to also remember in dogs.  A dog can pick up the virus by simply licking or sniffing another infected animal. 

Here is a bit of information about canine coronavirus that I have copied from a website.  For best measures, visit with your veterinarian.  Veterinarians do not all share the same opinions about diseases, detection, treatment and prevention.  SO…it is best to do what your local vet(s) recommend.

FYI…Info from a web source:

Canine coronavirus (CCoV) is a highly contagious disease in dogs that causes inflammation in a dog’s intestinal tract (called enteritis). The disease is spread when a healthy dog’s mouth comes in contact with an infected dog’s feces.  An infected dog can spread the virus for 6 to 9 days, although puppies have been shown to spread the disease for as long as 6 months, even when they no longer show any disease symptoms. The virus affects dogs of every age, with puppies being more susceptible to the infection. Clinical symptoms are seen 18 to 72 hours after being infected, with the most common symptoms being diarrhea, vomiting, feces that has a strong smell, and blood streaks/mucous in the feces. Puppies show additional canine coronavirus symptoms such as anorexia (loss of appetite), depression and dehydration. In cases of dehydration, fluid therapy is used. Most dogs recover completely from the virus, with recovery starting on the seventh day of the disease.”

Canine Coronavirus is a highly contagious virus caused by dog feces that are ingested (licked, inhaled or eaten) by your dog. There are several ways for a dog to catch the virus including direct contact with another dog. This occurs when dogs smell each other, licking the ground, or touching infected feces.

An infected adult dog sheds the virus for several days after they originally catch the disease (even when no longer showing symptoms). Puppies can shed the virus for as long as 6 months after recovery. You tend to see outbreaks of the illness in places where dogs gather such as dog runs, dog shows, pet stores, or at a kennel. The infection is very difficult to control and eliminate, since even when using a disinfectant to clean a kennel, contact between dogs can still spread the disease. In terms of disinfectants, a 3% hypochlorite solution will kill the virus.

Any age dog can catch the illness, although dogs with a weakened immune system, younger dogs, or dogs that have not been vaccinated are most susceptible.

Coronavirus puppy survival is dependent on early diagnosis and treatment. The virus can be a very serious problem for puppies between the age of 6 and 16 weeks.

Duration of Coronavirus in Dogs.  The virus usually lasts from 2 to 10 days.

What to expect at the Veterinarian’s Office.  The veterinarian has to determine if your dog has Coronavirus and the symptoms of canine coronavirus infection or the similar and more severe parvovirus, or a digestive problem.

Since Parvovirus is more problematic than coronavirus, they will often test for parvo, test the blood, examine the stool, abdomen and often take x-rays.

If your pet has severe symptoms, the dog may need to stay at an Animal Hospital for a 24-hour period.  Fluids will be provided if a dog is dehydrated.

Prevention of Coronavirus in Dogs.  Beyond avoiding exposure to an infected dog, there is a vaccine available for this virus.  However, the 2003 AAHA Vaccine Guidelines Task Force does not recommend the use of currently available CCoV vaccines. The vaccine doesn’t provide complete protection against the disease.

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If you have a call in, a note sent or a post with a question…rest assured I will get back to you.  It may take a day or 2 or a few days!

Gathering, sorting, hauling cattle for sale due to the drought has been the priority lately.  We weaned a couple hundred October calves along the way.  Looking after cowdogs and new litters is mixed in there.  Add to that getting hay trucks in and now dealing with the several inches of sleet/snow/freezing rain…I am a tad behind on correspondence.  You can call my cell phone if you’d like.  I will tell you in advance that I travel a lot of areas where I don’t have service.  Yes, we send folks to outer space and they communicate with clear signals back to Earth, but, for various reasons a hill or a building or a low area will drop an earthling out of communication range!

My cell is (573) 659-5971.  Have a good day!

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I get a lot of questions about, “What do you do when?” Here are a few general health management things I use.  To learn more, just Google the product name or consult your veterinarian.  The things listed below are just for “general information” and are not recommendations/endorsements or implied guarantees as to their safety or effectiveness in your cowdog operation and/or program.  There are other items that can be used that are less expensive. But for those asking, “What do you use?”, then here are a few items I keep on hand.

  2. Deramaxx – for pain, injury, arthritis.
  3. Neo-Par – puppy vaccine that can be used at an early age of a pup’s life.
  4. 7 or 8-way parvo/distemper/lepto/corona virus vaccine – annual booster vaccine for adult dogs.
  5. Kennel cough vaccine for pups.
  6. Ultra-Cal or Nutra-Cal – a calorie rich supplement for times of convalescing/dog illness recovery.
  7. Cephalexin – antibiotic in powder form in capsules. Brood dogs after whelping.  Stud dogs after servicing.
  8. Methagel supplement – for dogs that are prone to urinary pH irregularity.
  9. Co-Flex wrap – injury stabilization to a leg, foot.
  10. Electrolyte powder – have on hand for times when a dog overheats or dehydrates.
  11. Lactated Ringers – have on hand for times when a dog overheats or dehydrates.  Or if you get a pup that becomes a little dehydrated and needs a hydrating boost.
  12. Propylene Glycol – can be used to supplement depleted blood sugar levels. I keep this on hand for cows that may go down during times extreme cold stress and they are near calving.  I’ve had to use this once in the last 5 years for a cow that chilled out during a blizzard and she was carrying twins.  I also use it for calves that get sick with respiratory in extreme heat or cold temperatures.
  13. Stainless steel large toe nail clipper – tail docking.
  14. Betadine iodine concentrate – keep nail clippers in this when docking tails. Wash dirt-filled eyes or eyes that get packed with grass seed heads in the late spring.
  15. Gauze squares – use to gently massage or clean a wound.
  16. Visine Allergy Relief – for eyes in times of extreme dust/dirt.
  17. Nitrofurazone Eye Puffer – eye infection prevention or mix with betadine for wound cleansing.
  18. Cloverdale Country apple cider vinegar style – wound cleanser.
  19. Pyrantel pamoate – puppy, bred female, lactating female general dewormer.
  20. Valbazen – cattle dewormer…not labeled for dogs, but I use it diluted in a rotational deworming schedule.  Same can be said for SafeGuard which is also in the “bendazole family of dewormers”.  Do your research as to the active ingredients in canine products and then apply the math to dilute the cattle products down to the safe levels for canine use.
  21. Interceptor – general dewormer, heartworm prevention.
  22. Ivermectin based dewormers – I’ve genetic tested a few dogs to see if they can tolerate ivermectin based dewormers  which tend to be more cost-effective/less expensive.  I’ve used ivermectin based pour-ons for tick/flea control.  I HAVE NOT TESTED ALL MY DOGS AT THIS POINT TO DETERMINE THEIR TOLERANCE FOR IVERMECTIN-TYPE PRODUCTS.  You can Google the vet schools for more information or references as to securing these testing services…ex. Univ. of Washington.  NOTE:  Any type of pour-on product may impact different dogs in a different way.  For example, some dogs may be allergic to oil-based pour-ons or alcohol based pour-ons.  Weather temperatures can also impact skin reactions to pour-on products…same thing that you will observe in cattle of various ages or weight classifications.  Use caution regardless of what you do.

NOTE:  Here is a bit of reference text from the Univ. of Washington’s Vet School.  For all the vet school’s details, just go to their website. 

IMPORTANT NOTICE – The discovery of the mutation of the multi-drug resistant gene (mdr1), establishment of testing procedures, and development of all reagents was made by Washington State University. It is also a patent protected diagnostic test offered exclusively by Washington State University that has not been licensed to any other entity in the United States. It is licensed in Australia and Europe. Any unlicensed use or marketing of the patented test is a violation of federal statute under 35 u.s.c. 271. Unless testing is conducted by Washington State University’s Veterinary Clinical Pharmacology Laboratory, Washington State University cannot control quality and accuracy and consumers may risk receiving inaccurate results.

Prices $70 US Dollars per test for 1-4 tests included in a single shipment.
$60 US Dollars per test for 5 or more tests included in a single shipment (a 15% discount).

You will be asked to include payment when you return the sample to our lab.  There is no charge for ordering a test kit. We accept checks, money orders, or  credit card (MasterCard or Visa). Please do not send cash.

Contact Us – Veterinary Clinical Pharmacology Laboratory PO Box 609 Pullman, WA 99163-0609 Phone: 509-335-3745 FAX: 509-335-6309 VCPL@vetmed.wsu.edu

Last Edited: Sep 17, 2012 11:00 AM

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