Author: Brenda Hastings

Farm Animal Treatment & the See It? Stop It! Program

A dairy farmer’s job is to take care of animals. Everything that happens on our farm is centered on doing what’s best to maintain comfortable, healthy and productive animals.

We are fortunate to have a great team at our farm who like taking care of animals. Each day they milk the cows, deliver feed to their pens, make sure the animals have clean water troughs filled with fresh water, clean manure out of the pens, bring in clean bedding, treat sick animals, and whatever else is necessary for the herd.

Josue with a favorite heifer, Penelope
Andres carefully prepares the cows to be milked
Gregorio mixing fresh feed to deliver to the cows
Marco brings buckets of milk to the calves
Dave fixing the barn door to keep the cold air out this winter
Taylor with one of his favorite girls, Lorena #6616

 It’s inconceivable to most people that anyone would intentionally hurt an animal. Especially when your job is to take care of them. Our cattle depend on us to do what’s right. It’s important for us, and everyone charged with caring for livestock, to take their responsibility seriously. 

Unfortunately, a negative video pops up every once in a while displaying poor treatment of livestock. These videos are disturbing and difficult to watch. They are used by some organizations to convince people that the abuse depicted is normal behavior by farmers. It’s not.
I recently attended a national dairy meeting where I learned that 30% of the millennial generation (about 80 million people born between 1980 and 1995) believe farm animals are mistreated. This statistic disturbs me. Why do such a large number of young people in this country believe we fall short when it comes to livestock care?
Could it be this generation, well versed in YouTube, Twitter, Instagram and other social media, have seen videos depicting poor livestock treatment? Do they think this is common behavior? It isn’t.
One way we display our commitment to good animal care, is implementing the See It? Stop It! Program on our farm. This program is based on the principle that giving caretaker’s responsibility to report animal abuse assures the best animal care. Everyone on our farm is committed to providing the best care possible for the animals.

Good animal care has been happening on farms for generations. Long before the See It! Stop It! Program was created. But in today’s world, people seem to want a written, tangible assurance that farmers are doing the right thing. Programs and paperwork are not a substitute for setting an example and making sure good people are part of our team.

The people at our farm create a great environment for the animals

Fall Harvest is Underway!

It’s extra busy at the farm this week because we’re harvesting corn for silage. The cows at our farm love corn silage, which is a fermented forage that includes the entire corn plant from stock to ear. The silage we put up in October, will be an ingred…

Fall Harvest is Underway!

It’s extra busy at the farm this week because we’re harvesting corn for silage. The cows at our farm love corn silage, which is a fermented forage that includes the entire corn plant from stock to ear. The silage we put up in October, will be an ingred…

Visit our Dairy Farm this Fall

Fall is a wonderful time to visit a farm! We have four events happening on our farm in September and October that are open to the public. Come on down to the farm to meet our cows and check out the progress of our new milk bottling plant.

Cow Tales Adventures
Dates: September 17 and October 2
Time: 10am – 12pm
Special Instructions: This event is specifically for children 5 & under with a caregiver. Plan to arrive by 10am and be at the farm until 12pm to take part in all of the activities. Includes a cheese snack.
Cost: $6/person (12 months & under are free)   
Dates: September 28 and October 12
Time: 1pm – 5pm
Description: This event is open to all ages. All the activities are going on the entire time we’re open. Come and go anytime.
Cost: $6/person (1 years-old & under are free)  
Cow Tales & Dairy Days include;
  • Guided tour of the milking parlor to watch the cows being milked
  • Visit to the calf area where you can pet and interact with calves
  • Wagon ride tour of the farm to see where the cows live
  • Rides for children on the Chugga Chugga Moo Moo train  
  • Time to play on the farm-themed outdoor playground, pedal tractors & corn box
  • Indoor Junior Dairyman play area with farm themed toys
  • Cow Craft activity
  • Great photo opportunities!
Some of these activities are outdoors and some are inside. The events will go on rain or shine, we recommend wearing boots or old shoes. Please be prepared to pay with cash or check, we are not able to process credit cards. No reservations required.

Our farm is also available for scheduled group tours or parties in September and October. For more information, check out the Hastings Dairy website.  

Here are some scenes from previous Cow Tales Adventures & Dairy Days events:
Kids love riding the Chugga Chugga Moo Moo train
Watching the cows milking from the observation balcony
Watching the cows in the milking parlor
Taking a wagon ride around the farm
A favorite activity; petting the calves
Playing in the corn box
Building a log barn in the Parlor room
Fun in the giant sandbox
Families enjoying a picnic on the playground
See our new milk bottling plant; we’ll be selling milk soon!

See you down on the farm!

Visit our Dairy Farm this Fall

Fall is a wonderful time to visit a farm! We have four events happening on our farm in September and October that are open to the public. Come on down to the farm to meet our cows and check out the progress of our new milk bottling plant.

Cow Tales Adventures
Dates: September 17 and October 2
Time: 10am – 12pm
Special Instructions: This event is specifically for children 5 & under with a caregiver. Plan to arrive by 10am and be at the farm until 12pm to take part in all of the activities. Includes a cheese snack.
Cost: $6/person (12 months & under are free)   
Dates: September 28 and October 12
Time: 1pm – 5pm
Description: This event is open to all ages. All the activities are going on the entire time we’re open. Come and go anytime.
Cost: $6/person (1 years-old & under are free)  
Cow Tales & Dairy Days include;
  • Guided tour of the milking parlor to watch the cows being milked
  • Visit to the calf area where you can pet and interact with calves
  • Wagon ride tour of the farm to see where the cows live
  • Rides for children on the Chugga Chugga Moo Moo train  
  • Time to play on the farm-themed outdoor playground, pedal tractors & corn box
  • Indoor Junior Dairyman play area with farm themed toys
  • Cow Craft activity
  • Great photo opportunities!
Some of these activities are outdoors and some are inside. The events will go on rain or shine, we recommend wearing boots or old shoes. Please be prepared to pay with cash or check, we are not able to process credit cards. No reservations required.

Our farm is also available for scheduled group tours or parties in September and October. For more information, check out the Hastings Dairy website.  

Here are some scenes from previous Cow Tales Adventures & Dairy Days events:
Kids love riding the Chugga Chugga Moo Moo train
Watching the cows milking from the observation balcony
Watching the cows in the milking parlor
Taking a wagon ride around the farm
A favorite activity; petting the calves
Playing in the corn box
Building a log barn in the Parlor room
Fun in the giant sandbox
Families enjoying a picnic on the playground
See our new milk bottling plant; we’ll be selling milk soon!

See you down on the farm!

The County Fair – Generations of Showing Cattle

This week is The Great Geauga County Fair. My sons will be exhibiting some dairy heifers at the fair. They look forward to the fair every year, just like I did when I was younger. It takes hard work to get the animals ready, but it’s all worth it to show them off and spend the week at the fair!

Our families have been showing dairy cattle at the county fair for generations. . . .
Me showing at the Tulare County Fair in 1982
My husband, Lad, at the Wayne County Fair
My mom, Carolyn, with Judy who was Jr Champion Guernsey at the Sacramento Co. Fair
My dad, Tony, (3rd from right) showing with Riverdale FFA
Lad’s mom, Pat, won 1st in Showmanship with Peppy in August 1962
Lad’s dad, Duane, with Comet who was Jr Champion at Wayne County Fair in 1954
My sons are carrying on the family tradition. Check back a week or two to see pictures and results from the fair.

The County Fair – Generations of Showing Cattle

This week is The Great Geauga County Fair. My sons will be exhibiting some dairy heifers at the fair. They look forward to the fair every year, just like I did when I was younger. It takes hard work to get the animals ready, but it’s all worth it to show them off and spend the week at the fair!

Our families have been showing dairy cattle at the county fair for generations. . . .
Me showing at the Tulare County Fair in 1982
My husband, Lad, at the Wayne County Fair
My mom, Carolyn, with Judy who was Jr Champion Guernsey at the Sacramento Co. Fair
My dad, Tony, (3rd from right) showing with Riverdale FFA
Lad’s mom, Pat, won 1st in Showmanship with Peppy in August 1962
Lad’s dad, Duane, with Comet who was Jr Champion at Wayne County Fair in 1954
My sons are carrying on the family tradition. Check back a week or two to see pictures and results from the fair.

Summertime on the Farm

My family is having an active summer. It’s been cooler than normal, which the cows like. My sons have been busy working with the animals they’ll show at the County Fair at the end of August. We’ve had lots of cows calving this summer, so the boys like …

Summertime on the Farm

My family is having an active summer. It’s been cooler than normal, which the cows like. My sons have been busy working with the animals they’ll show at the County Fair at the end of August. We’ve had lots of cows calving this summer, so the boys like …

Coming Soon. . . Rowdy Cow Creamery

Rowdy Cow Creamery, our new on-farm milk processing facility, is progressing. The equipment installation is almost complete and we’re excited to start bottling milk soon! We have a few more steps before we’re ready to go, but I wanted to give you a progress report.

Here’s a look at the recent happenings. . .
The bottle filler equipment was delivered and unloaded
Lad moves the bottle filler onto the porch
The bottle filler arrives in the Creamery
This equipment will fill bottles with our fresh milk
The pipeline transports fresh milk from our cows to the vat pasteurizer
The Creamery is almost ready to bottle milk!
The Rowdy Cow Creamery crates are ready to be filled with bottles of milk
Soon, I hope to be sharing photos of us bottling milk! Stay tuned. . . .