Not good news:
there’s been a further suspect case of FMD reported within the Surrey Protection Zone. All the cattle concerned, have been slaughtered. Meanwhile, our continued observation of Defra’s website has revealed further gaps in the information they’re providing: there is absolutely nothing, for example, about recognising the disease as it occurs in goats, camelids or deer; despite the fact that these species are widely kept in the UK (only pigs, sheep & cattle are mentioned). Also, the website repeatedly refers to ‘farmers’ with nothing said about smallholders; bizarrely, some of my hobby farm friends assume that all this cannot, therefore, relate to them. It’s just not funny.
Meanwhile we have been working hard to save Anthemis’s mastitic udder: bathing it regularly with warm cloths; milking the affected side; using the intermammary tubes; & completing her course of intra-muscular injections with a penicillin solution. Though the situation seems to be improving, I’m not entirely convinced as all we are getting when we milk her, is an unpleasant, muddy-brown liquid. All we can do is persevere; & hope she’s young enough – & that we’ve caught the problem, quickly enough – to have prevented any long-term damage. Luckily, she is fine in herself, having a good appetite & being bright & lively; that said, it always deeply upsets me when any one of the animals in our care, is unwell for any reason.