SDS Week 12 – Final

My SDS is the monitoring and caring for my 4-H steer Buddha and my heifer Rose. I spent 12 weeks feeding and training the 4-H animals. I have learned a lot about nutrition and how important it is for the animals to have a balanced diet, I also learned about how delicate and important it is to make sure your heifer get bred. These past few weeks have really been a learning experience and I am excited for our year end in Weyburn this summer!

Week 1 was when it we were really just getting started, we had began getting ready to head to Yorkton and began putting them on heavier feed. This post is all about the introductions of Buddha and what I will be doing with him for the next few months. I also mentioned that he was a purebred Hereford meaning that both his dam (mother) and sire (father) are also purebred Herefords.

Week 2 was all about Artificially Insemination and what factors were to be considered when you AI your heifer and the steps that are needed to take it. Buddha also weighed 1080lbs as of February 27th. I would also like to add that even though I was originally thinking about breeding my heifer Gelbvieh, we headed up putting her out with our 5Z Hereford bull because we did have a hard time catching heats.


This diagram demonstrates the process of Artificial Insemination.

Week 3 was focused on the nutritional aspects of the animals and I learnt about the balanced diet they should be getting. They now (and always have) have a self feed bale feeder which we keep full always, they are feed twice a day a ration of oats, corn, barley, calcium supplements, show ration and supplement. This week was also the week of Buddha’s Birthday (March 13th) and he turned 1 year old. Fun Fact: Cows have 4 “stomachs” meaning 4 large chambers in their stomachs.

buddha 1

This is Buddha!

Week 4 was when I explained the purpose and reason I have Buddha. Buddha is a market steer and will be sold for slaughter in the beginning of July. Before he is sold, he will be shown a few times, at the end of June we have our club achievement day where I will complete with Buddha against other kids and their steers in our club. Once that is over and done with, we will compete in our regional against kids in other clubs in the surrounding areas and at the end of that Buddha and the rest of the steers from the club will be sold.


Week 5 was after Buddha and I attended the Yorkton Spring Steer and Heifer show. We placed 2nd in grooming and 5th in class which think is a success! We was looking pretty handsome all clipped and groomed up. Click here to see the pictures from the show!

Week 6 was a bit of boring week, because of the crazy busy weekend we let our steers rest and just continued to feed them twice a day everyday. At this point, we still hadn’t started the heifers on feed because we don’t want them to gain the way the steers will. This was the week we also got entered in the Kennedy Jackpot Show on June 4th.


Week 7 again with this week not much was done with the steers. Our main focus was the heifers and watching for heats which is when they present their cycle every 3 weeks, they have to Artificially Inseminated within 12 hours of presenting heat or you will have to wait 3 weeks for the next cycle. Heats can be detected usually by other heifers riding and gathering together, they can also be in a restless state.

Week 8 was a little more productive, we got the steers tied up and even took them for a long way in the yard because of the beautiful day. We also treated our heifers with a vaccine called estermate. Estermate is designed to synchronize the heifer’s heats and make it easier to detect track their cycling from now on.

Week 9 was fairly uneventful, the heifers were put out with a bull because the estermate didn’t work and our main priority is getting them caught. As our achievement day is approaching, we need to be working with our calves more than ever but the heifers have to be bred first or they won’t be considered a “bred heifer” which is what we show them as. We have continued to increase the steers feed and they have continued to grow in size!

Week 10 was not a very exciting week we continued to increase the steers food and the heifers are still with the bulls. I know we are hoping that they are or will be bred soon so we can get them back on some feed and get them show ready. Just as a note, the feed we feed the heifers is much different than what we feed the steers, it is much less dense and smaller amount in size, they are on a oats and corn diet.

Week 11 we did lots of work with the steers and heifers over the long weekend, lots of work with their hair and halter breaking. The heifers are back on their own from the bull and are back on feed. Buddha now weighs 1260lbs and he will be even bigger by the time fair rolls around.

My 12th and final post was the busiest week regarding the steers and heifers, on Sunday May 29th we have our 4-H clipping and hoof trimming day. We loaded all the calves up into the trailer and headed over to Beck’s for the day. We have guys come out and do a clipping demo, once that was  over we all clipped our animals under the guidance of others, we also did a showmanship and judging demo. I clipped Buddha to get him all ready for next weekend in Kennedy. We brought the heifers too but didn’t clip them for time purposes. Both the steers and heifers got their hooves trimmed which is basically like a pedicure for cows. At the end of the day we packed up and headed home and washed the steers before it began to rain that evening. It was a very eventful weekend for the steers and heifers!

clipping 1       clipping 2       clipping 3

Helping Kalla clip her steer Murray.                                                                                     Clipping Buddha’s topline



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