Owners practice animal heat safety at county fairs
Written by Ally Crutcher, Multimedia Journalist - bio | email
INDEPENDENCE (KWWL) -
With county fairs all over Iowa facing the recent heat wave, people aren't the only ones that can suffer from the high temperatures.
Around 450 animals are at the Buchanan County Fair this year. The Buchanan County ISU Extension said staff members are assigned to each barn making sure the animals stay cool and hydrated.
"We just make sure that every barn has its fans going, plenty of water, they have whatever that species needs to keep cool, whether it's a spray system for the hogs or ice bottles for the chickens to sit on," said Roxanne Fuller with the ISU Extension.
Ryan Arend is showing a steer and a heifer at the fair in his fifth year of showing. He said he rinses off his cows with cool water every morning and runs misting foggers throughout the day.
The cows also get a five-gallon bucket of water about once every hour.
He said, as an animal owner, it's important to recognize signs of heat stress in his cows when it gets hot.
"Sides of the stomach will start bouncing in and out, their tongues will stick out if it gets really bad. You can tell they're distressed," Arend said.
The Buchanan County Fair Board said every barn has fans running and unlimited supplies of water. Volunteer veterinarians also check all animals before the fair making sure they are stable enough to be outside in the heat.
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