Carlotta tries to stay cool.
We live in the Ozarks where it’s humid and hot.
Heat indices have been in the hundreds already for weeks. Here are some of the things Mom does to keep us cool.
If you spray an animal, start at his feet and work up the legs, then do his neck and shoulders saving the back and butt for last; that way he can get used to the cold more gradually. If he has long hair like the llamas do, be sure to saturate his coat all the way down to the skin; otherwise the wet outer layer traps body heat and makes the llama hotter instead of cooling him down.
Don’t spray water in his face unless he likes it (our horse Imbir’ does) and even then, don’t spray it into his ears.
Sheep and long-haired goats and llamas and alpacas are especially prone to heat stress and they should be shorn before hot weather sets in.
Mom also keeps plenty of ice cubes in the freezer to help cool down anyone who overheats. To do that, Mom and Dad pack ice cubes underneath the overheated animal, especially in the armpits and groin. Then they hose him down with cold, cold water until he feels okay again.
Small creatures like chickens go in the house where it’s air conditioned, into a dog crate with a fan trained on it. Once they’re cool, they stay inside to recuperate a bit before rejoining their friends outside.
It’s important for humans to stay cool too, otherwise who will chill our water, feed us and scratch our chins? That’s what I’ll talk about next week: what humans on a hobby farm can do to stay cool.