From the Ground Up - The Calf Lady

Today, it’s not hard to find a child who doesn’t have any roots in agriculture; no grandparents with a farm, with no exposure to what life on a farm or ranch is life.

Nothing could be further from the truth for Betty Andrews of North Zulch. She’s been a rancher her entire life.

“The boys found them a way out, they thought, and they never came back. So that left sister, and I was at home so I went with Daddy and we checked the cows, and we did this and we did that. ”

Betty Andrews continued to help her father ranch, even after she had married. She began rescuing orphan calves in 1985.

“I had cattle before that. My father had cattle before that, but my health got bad and I had to cut back and do what I could do.”

Andrews is known around North Zulch as the “calf lady”.

“They want me to raise them for them or their cow has died or something has happened. They bring the calf here and I raise it. I go to the sale barn. I buy calves there.”

Newcomers are immediately vaccinated and given a shot of minerals.

“The older ones will go right on a cow. Now the younger ones that are in really, really, bad condition, I will probably bottle them for maybe a week or two. That way I can control what they eat. I can give them that much extra vitamins, nutrients that they might not get otherwise.”

When you’re not physically big, it helps to work smart.

“You catch them by the tail, this is their steering wheel as I call it. You turn them and they go back that way. You learn how to manage them. If you don’t they’ll kill you. They’ll step all over you.”

Betty Andrews enjoys her work.

“It’s not what they are or where they came from, they lived, and that’s very, very important to me, trying to get one, and get him up, and watch him go out across there with his tail stuck up in the air just racing around the trap, and know, God did that, and I helped.”

I’m Kailey Carey, looking at Brazos Valley agriculture, From The Ground Up.

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