Thursday, December 16, 2010

Frost on the Brow of the Ox

The official temperature was -26 degrees F (-32.2 degrees C). Scout the Ox was happy to be in the barn out of the wind, in a well bedded pen (He's free to choose sleeping inside or outside; the gate is always open unless the night's weather is expected to be severe --- in which case closing it helps to break the wind.)
Scout the Ox has just had his morning feeding of about three pounds of an all-stock ground grain mix. Some of the grain stuck to his nose. He gets a second feeding of about three pounds in the evening. I feed his hay outside to help keep his pen clean of manure. I'd rather he not be inside unless he's sleeping, eating his grain in the wee hours of the morning, or drinking his water.

Harry the Dog is peeking under the fence from his bed while Scout the Ox  washes down his breakfast with a fresh bucket of water. I carry Scout and Harry's water in the blue buckets of which I have two. I exchange the buckets twice a day. The one in the barn is sitting inside a discarded rubber tire and has bedding stuffed around it to slow freezing of the water.

I bring the second bucket in the house so it can thaw out before I refill it. This prevents banging on frozen buckets and breaking them. One of our house cats, Squeak, likes to play in the frozen buckets.
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Amy said...

This last picture of Squeak in the bucket startled me for a moment (what kind of neglect or abuse is happening?!) Then I read the text - he sure is an interesting little fella.

LTD said...

Yes he is!

As you see the bucket is empty of water with just a crust of ice at the top --- giving him a secret hiding place.

The door is the hole Scout the Ox melts with his nose to get a drink of the water underneath the ice.