Notes from Your Farmer
From the Farmer Note Classics, last year about this time:
A little bit of lice is good for you!
Knowing me as the positive person I am, many of you might now think I have lice and am trying to come up with a silver lining on my way to have my head shaved…Which I would do (the shaving part), maybe….However, what I have learned about lice makes sense…why I learned it is a different story……
This time of year the pigs will get lice. A little lice is fine for the older pigs but the piglets get depressed. They really do. It is a bit overwhelming for them.
The internet cure for piglets is all about pesticides… lovely. The treatment most recommended for you and your children is also a pesticide and highly toxic. It is the ingredient Permethrin. It is a synthetic chemical pesticide that works as a neurotoxin. It kills the insect and in quantity can kill brain cells. It is bad stuff to put on your head. It doesn’t work much anymore because it doesn’t kill the eggs of the adult lice. The stronger of those that hatch build a resistance and hence the Permethrin only kills the weaker of the pesky things. Leaving a stronger strain to deal with while you poison yourself…isn’t that special. But there is something that actually kills not only the adult lice but the eggs too. Natural and non toxic to humans - Tea Tree, Neem and Karanja Oil. The eggs are killed and the lice are gone. The best mix out there we found is by Access Nutraceuticals Inc. (you can Google licekiller.com).
Not willing to wait for an order to be delivered I took the Tea Tree oil off my shelf and mixed it with an organic shampoo. Armed with a bucket and brush I walked out to the piglets. Now piglets are not excited about cold water in winter and they do not wish to be bathed in a tub. But sometimes mom’s gotta to do what mom’s gotta do. Just like holding the dog in the tub, we put the piglets in one by one and gave them a Tea Tree oil bath. The sound that comes from a piglets mouth when it does not want a bath is something one should not put on a bucket list of experiences to have in ones lifetime. OMG. It is the worst screeching, high pitched nasty sound on the planet. If you didn’t know better you would think they were having a leg cut off and they don’t stop screeching until you put them back on the ground, at which time they just stop. Instant silence and they walk away. Just like a human baby, one of them had to poop and at the same time try to jump out, splashing poop water all over me and particularly in my face (I love my job, I love my job). After getting 9 or so cleaned up I took a break, staring at the little herd digging around the greens in their pasture. Half of them were so clean compared to the other half that were not bathed yet. The difference was striking. I remembered Wilbur and how he glistened when the farmer’s wife gave him a buttermilk bath. I also remember that he stood there enjoying it. Duped again. Covered in mud, pig poop and feeling good about the morning, I walked back toward the house that would offer a shower. What doesn’t kill you makes you stronger, even a little bit of lice (kicks in your immune system). I stopped to talk to one of our members walking with her young daughter. The sweet, cute little darling scrunched up her nose at me and whispered to her mom “she smells bad”. That I did.
Your Farmer, Tara Smith.