Following on from the signs I put up urging walkers to keep their dogs on leads and a social media post on my Kent Shepherd Facebook page, I received a barrage of abuse from vegans; my first trolls.
The post had 1,533 shares so it must have gone far and wide.
The haters claimed I could not possibly care for my animals because I sent ’their babies’ to slaughter and continued a long thread of the usual derogatory, poorly thought-out remarks.
I did not respond to any of those comments and the vegans must have got bored and found someone else to pick on. It is sad to see so much antagonism between farmers and any other group, least of all over the issue of animal welfare.
These most vocal individuals are trying to damage our reputation, so farmers must continue to maintain the highest standards in everything we do while telling the real story to whoever will listen, to give us a more powerful voice.
A healthy month away from lambing means the flock has had a clostridia vaccine and are looking well in their groups.
The singles have been finding something to eat even though you might need a magnifying glass to find it; testament to the hardiness of the Romneys.
I am waiting on a forage analysis for the hay I am feeding my twins to work out how much cake they need over the coming weeks.
I have a few jobs like dagging and shearing to do for other people, and will need to shift my ewe lambs so they have a bit of grass in front of them.
The house and the lambing caravan both need mucking out before I am up to my own navel in iodine in month or so.
I have my usual keen helper coming for an Easter holiday which nicely coincides with lambing. Before then my parents are off to North Wales, a place they are becoming increasingly attached to, which I can understand.
I once read the advice to ’leave the farm once-a-day, the village once-a-week, the county once-a-month and the country once-a-year’, which seems a fairly healthy attitude, although arguably unrealistic.
The importance of our mental and physical health is paramount and it is heartening to see more awareness-raising campaigns to stamp out stigma surrounding the issue, encouraging farmers to seek help when required.