Having a farm full of varied animals is a dream for many a farmer. Of course, being a farmer in itself is exceptionally hard work. It goes without saying that the more animals you have, the more work you will have on your plate. However, with many different types of livestock, your day will always be interesting. After all, they say that variety is the spice of life! Plus, having a wide range of livestock can open your farm up to many more opportunities – whether you are selling produce or opening your farm up to the public. Here are some things you’ll need to consider if you’re thinking of adding to your brood.
Think about your farm and what you want to get out of it. If you are running your farm purely for produce, it’s best to stick to a few select animals you know how to farm correctly. This will stop you from getting overburdened and ending up with low quality produce. If you are running a public farm, the more variety you can have the better! Families in particular will be interested to see many different types of animals. Make sure you and your staff are educated in each type and that you have plenty of information boards up for visitors to read. Go for a mix of low cost to high cost animals – for example, guinea pigs are cheap and make a great petting zoo. Whereas horses are very expensive, so only have two if you’re on a budget.
Make sure you are prepared
You will need to ensure that your farmland is prepared for you expanding your current farm. The ground will need to be grassy and stable to host animals such as cows and sheep. However, if you are planning on owning some pigs, an enclosure more prone to mud would be perfect for them. Be aware of the amount of space you have and how much room each animal needs. It is always better for them to have more space than is necessary than not enough. You will also need to anticipate that your farm may fall victim to the elements at some point, so investing in good shelter for your animals is vital. There are plenty of high quality stables for sale which you will be able to get installed.
Learn about the animals
If you have more than a couple types of animal on your farm, you will have a lot to learn. Aside from what they eat and their behaviours, make sure you are fully clued up about each animal’s health. Learn common ailments and symptoms and look out for these in your livestock every week or so. The medical treatment of farm animals can prove extremely expensive, so it is better to catch any illnesses as early as possible. Also visit your local veterinary surgery before bringing any livestock home. Talk to your vet and make sure that there is someone in the practice who will be able to deal with each animal you have on your site. If not, you may be facing a long journey with your animal to get it the help it needs.