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I should have learned by now to trust my own judgment. I suppose I might trust the judgment part but my eyes sometimes play tricks on me.

I saw the cow in the chute the day we went through the fall calving bunch and she looked at me from one side that sorta looked swollen. Quickly turning her head, she looked fine and I let it go. She is a six-year-old AI out of a high-bred bull and has produced three big steer calves that were sure nice. The first calf was a keeper heifer. I like this old cow and it is hard on a beef producer to find problems with his raised herd. Sure, I know you can't keep them forever, but I sure don't like surprise sickness.

This morning I found her pretty easy, down by herself and with droopy ears. The swollen side was very noticeable. It looked like she had a grapefruit in her mouth.

By the time I finished haying and counting, it was time for lunch and I knew the offspring would show up to eat. We discussed the ordeal and decided to get her up and feel the mass. It might be just a big thorn and we could take care of that ourselves. Not a snake bite this time of year, I figured, and, of course, it might be cancer. It happens pretty often in cattle.

We got the old hides to move into the pens real easy and poured out a couple of sacks of cubes as they expected. I walked the cow out of the bunch and into the catch pen real easy. I sure like this cow, good all the way around. We got her in the chute and she stood easy as we all took a turn at guessing what the growth could be. It was solid, making me think it was much more serious than a thorn, and neither of the offspring could or would give an opinion. They are pretty savvy about vet medicine and I expected something out of them.

Both young men spent their time in pre-vet and managed top grades so, if they won't guess, I figured I'd best get the trailer hooked up and head to the vet clinic. The offspring did the work as I went in and cleaned up some. My close relative was invited to ride along, and she thanked me but had too much to take care of in the house. Don't ask me what she had to do; I do not know!

The clinic yard had three trailers ahead of me and they were all full of cattle. I knew I was in for a wait. I don't whine over that sort of luck. I just took myself up to the working area and visited with all who were there. I guess I was there two and a half hours before I could back into the hole and unload the cow.

The vet pried the cow's mouth open and peered into the area that was swollen. He said he sure was glad to see an abscessed tooth, and he pulled it with little effort. The cow got lots of medicine and orders to give her more in a week.

It is my opinion, and everyone has one, once in a while bad things turn out fairly good. I was pleased to know we had cured the root of a problem and, hopefully, all will be well. We can't always expect the answer we want when we have problems, but we can do all we are able and try to head off disasters.

A dead cow is a disaster to me and most of us beef producers. It is sorta like all things in life. If you are gonna do something, do it the very best you can and it sure helps to contact the Lord daily.

I am counting the weeks until tick and chigger weather!

Bill is the pen name used by the Gravette area author of this weekly column. Opinions expressed are those of the author.

Editorial on 02/06/2019

Print Headline: Once in a great while bad things turn out fairly good

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