Women of the ranching, farming, and livestock world should pat themselves on the back for the work they do. Men have always been the main focus in these areas but who works beside them or without them? Ranching women have always been doing the work right next to their male partners. No matter what that entailed. Women have been running tractors, bailers, roping, branding, lambing, feeding, and getting up all night to check on expectant mothers.
I’ve noticed over the last few years that more single women are in the ranching world. I have several women friends who are either single and working their ranches or are married but their other half works off the place. In other words, they are running it themselves.
My sister and I ran a herd of goats and a herd of sheep together until I got married. She still has her sheep and I have my goats and now also some sheep. My husband is one of those that works off the place. He does do a lot to help me when he is home.
We all keep in touch, help each other when needed, and share our stories. We get together to do chores that need more than one person or more “umpf” than one can do. Fencing, shearing, castrating, lambing, or kidding can sometimes require more bodies. We all get down and dirty, sweat till we’re soaked, and have band-aids and bruises in more places than necessary.
Some of us are young and some of us are not so young. This is one career that has no retirement age or pension as long as you can get out of bed. There are those days though, that I wonder. At 68 I still do fencing, pull lambs and kids, chase ewes, clean pens, and all the rest of what needs doing. I love it and would never want to do anything else. Visit my other blogs for more of my great adventures. https://dustsweatboots.com/livestock-hard-knocks/
None of these ranches are very large, anywhere from 10 acres to 40 to a couple of hundred. But they are ours and we work them with everything we have. I know there are more women out there doing this work and love what they do. It would be wonderful to hear your stories about how you get things done.
We all trade our wares with each other, either with farming products, livestock, or work. Eggs for giving shots, a turkey for skeins of handspun yarn, kid goats for sheep breeding, we love the barter system. Life would be so much simpler if we all went by the barter system. We all look out for each other as well as our other neighbors. Check out my neighbor’s blog here: http://thislittlepiggystayedhome.com/farm-life/
I know there are those women who work larger ranches and spend their days in tractors, on horseback or keeping the books to keep what they love going. They run these places with their families and they do the hard work right next to their husbands. It’s a wonderful way of life and gives us the opportunities to be with and work with our families. We all provide something for this country to exist and grow on.
For all the women who have contributed their bodies and souls by themselves to keeping this country eating, I wanted to bring attention to all the dirty, hard, and dangerous work that you do ranching.