Category Archives: Cattle

Tis’ the Season for Homesteading and Giving Gifts

Homesteading Supplies make the best gifts for everyone!

The holidays are just around the corner and traditionally are a time for reflection and gratitude.  But it’s also a time when we have to figure out what gifts we will need to give.  We at Homesteader’s Supply appreciate your business especially knowing that many of you have experienced hard times this past year.

thanksgiving web pictureHomesteader’s Supply is a home-grown venture, offering friendly customer service just like an old-fashioned store. You deserve to be treated well when you spend your money!  We were just selected as a 2013 winner of the Talk of the Town Customer Service Awards with their top rating!

Our store always tries to provide the best prices on our quality products, all year round, not just Black Friday or Cyber Monday, so keep checking in for our special sales!

So read on and get an idea of some of our homesteading supply products and best sellers.  Because of what is happening in our economy today, it’s a great time to buy functional gifts for your family and friends… gifts that can actually used for a self-sustaining endeavor, no matter how big or how small. And best of all, this is a good time to pick up a good offer for your own homesteading venture.


  • Encouraging self sufficient, self sustainable living and homesteading of all varieties… family farm, urban homestead, country homestead, or even in NYC!
  • Environmentally friendly products, U.S.A. made and manufactured whenever possible
  • Dairy Milking equipment and supplies!
  • Livestock care.
  • Poultry, equine, bovine and even pet supplies!
  • Canning / Preserving / Processing of Fruit, Veggies and Meat!
  • Heirloom Gardening
  • Cultures and supplies for Cheese Making! Even our own kits!
  • Variety of items for the homestead kitchen and so much more!

Check out some of our current best sellers:

Our own in house designed and manufactured Ultimate Cheese Press, almost two years in the making and go strong with overwhelming great feedback. cheese press

Very easy to use, ergonomically designed, presses your cheese the same every time!


And we also carry all the cheesemaking supplies you need to make just about any favorite cheese.   You will find only our HS Cheese Kits such as our best selling  Best Basic Cheesemaking Kit  and our Supreme Cheesemaking Kit which are flying out the door!   We designed all of our kits to contain the same supplies professionals use, and only the supplies you will actually use.  supreme_kit_2







Interested in fermenting supplies?  We offer our own designed and manufactured Pickle-Pro Lids to fit both wide mouth and regular mouth sized canning jars.  Lacto-Ferment all your veggies and fruits into delicious foods which are better for your health.  We even offer fermenting cultures and the Polish Crocks!   PP05

4gal fermenting crock






What a great time to get a good deal on Meat Processing Supplies!  All of our smokers are on sale.  Homesteading folks and others just love the Country Smoker… smoker inside







And then another best seller is our Stainless Steel Manual Meat Grinder

10 SS meat grinder


And we have everything else you might need like jerky and sausage making supplies, meat tenderizers, meat mixers and patty makers, and more.  Don’t see what you are looking for, give us a call.. We carry the three main suppliers products… Weston Products, TSM, and LEM…  and we can probably get what you need.  Want to bargain for a better price or better shipping charge… you know website software is not always accurate and we want you to pay exactly what is charged to your home. So give us a call if you have any questions about a product you want.

Here is a great peek at some of our other best sellers for your homestead.  We have used many of these products on the HS homestead and put our stamp of approval on them.  How about the Squeezo Strainer and Sauce Maker  which we believe is the best strainer out there and will last a lifetime… hs squeezo4sm





The WonderMill Electric Grain mill wondermill






WonderMill Junior Manual Grain Mill  … the delux model has both burrs and stones and so it can do just about anything.  Dry and Wet grains… even your coffee beans!wondermill_junior_deluxe





Now would be the perfect time pea sheller newto get the Electric Mr Pea Sheller!  Most folks wait until their crop of beans come in and then need a sheller yesterday, Get prepared and be ready! This unit will last you a very long time.


And a few of our other best sellers….

wine press stainless Stainless Steel Wine Press… these go very fast!


Everyone needs a Stainless Steel Dehydrator! It’s the way to dry and preserve a good part of your bounty… veggies, fruit, jerky etc.  ss dehydrator






Not everyone needs one of these, cherry stonerbut it sure comes in handy if you have a large crop of cherries to pit.  This Cherry Stoner is all Stainless Steel and at a great value. Will last a lifetime!






And of course, let’s not forget our furry friends!  Eco-Naps-w-Dog luxury_cat_beds_greta Organic-Bumper-w-Dog-OttoWe now carry Pet Beds made here in the United States with natural materials.  We decided to carry these products because of the company standards in providing a great natural product to ensure our pets will be healthy and happy! And of course, a great way to support another American Small Business!








Well folks, we hope you have enjoyed our presentation of suggestions for gift giving this holiday season.  We wish everyone a time full of peace and happiness!

Have questions or concerns, or just want to say hey… give us a call.

From all of us at Homesteaders Supply, we wish you all a wonderful and safe holiday season! jerri HS_logoNewSm

When A Bull Comes to Visit…

We had to dry Cookie cow off for the move from Arizona to Wisconsin and now that we’re here… we are all going through milk withdrawal! Cookie has had over four months to acclimate and is doing very well. We decided it was time for her to have a friend come and visit. The man we bought hay from has a nice size herd of beef cattle and said he had a few too many bulls now that everyone has bred their cows. He offered to bring a young one over for a few months to visit Cookie in hopes that we’d keep him all winter.
As bulls go… he’s as sweet as can be! That being said… HE IS STILL A BULL! We are very mindful of where he is when we are feeding, mucking stalls and scooping poop in the pasture. We have two paddocks and a cross fence between the arena and the big pasture. If we are doing anything that requires focus… we lock up the bull first.

I wasn’t always so aware of bull behavior. About four years ago I had a bull come to visit the girls and one day when I let them in for milking, he darted in right with them. In the confusion of two hungry cows full of milk and a feisty bull, I was pinned up against a metal gate and couldn’t move out of the way. The bull had stepped on the toe of my boot and I was unable to move my foot at all, let alone get away from his head. Luckily he was naturally polled so he didn’t have the horns with which to skewer me, but he did pound me into that gate a few times before I was able to get a hold of a shovel and thump him in the head to back off! It took some time to heal my lower back from that pounding and I’m thankful it wasn’t a more serious injury. Bulls are necessary for those who choose not to go the artificial insemination route and an ounce of knowledge is worth it’s weight in gold!!!!
When it’s time to breed the cow, don’t be afraid of having a bull come to visit. Instead, I’d urge you to plan ahead. Have pens available to lock the bull into so you can spend time with your cow and clean up without having to have a ‘look out’. Being safe and planning ahead will make the process a fond experience. Now, it’s time for me to go and lock up our visiting bull and clean up some poop!!! Wishing you all a great Sunday.

Happy Homesteading !!!!

How Are Feed Prices in Your Area?

As I’ve said many times, I have a Jersey dairy cow named Cookie, a jersey calf and a gelding Quarter Horse named Dandy (he came named that way… I call him DoDa from the Yankee Doodle Dandy song) Anyway… I had two jersey cows up until a week ago when I took one, who was still in milk, into the butcher. (Another side note… I had to take her into the butcher – there was no way I could pull the trigger staring my Sally cow in the eyes)

Why did I take a pure bred Jersey cow who was still in milk to the butcher??? FEED PRICES!!! Sally had a detachment in her left rear quarter and it was a battle to milk that section. She stood statue still and was a great cow, I just had to hold up the bag and massage a lot to get the milk out. (Detachment is when the milk making part of the quarter detaches from up top and falls to the bottom of the bag) Sometimes the blood supply is cut off when this happens and the quarter dries up naturally. Unfortunately, that was not the case with Sally.

Now, back to our regular program…. So, I took Sally to the butcher, not because Cookie wouldn’t love to have her as a dry cow buddy, but because I couldn’t AFFORD to feed a dry cow buddy. You see a few years ago (2008 / 2009) when gas shot up to almost $5.00 a gallon, feed shot up. A three string bale of alfalfa (90 lbs or so) went from $8.99 to $14.99 per bale in a matter of weeks. (Remember, I live in Arizona where everything has to be trucked in) Corn, Oats and Barley also shot up as did Estrella alfalfa pellets and chicken crumble. Prices didn’t really drop too much until very late 2009 and the prices didn’t drop anywhere near where they started before gas skyrocketed… Then late 2010 gas prices started to skyrocket again… but went no where near as high as it had last time… peaked around $3.90 instead of $4.80 a gallon… FEED however went significantly higher than it had before. I am currently paying $16.99 for a light three string bale of Alfalfa, I’m paying $14.99 for a 50 # bag of corn, oats and barley with molasses and $11.99 for a 50# bag of Estralla alfalfa pellets… Before I took Sally to butcher – my feed bill was pushing $800.00 per month! I pay less than that for my house payment!

So, I’m curious, with the commodities market raking havoc on grain prices and gas prices jumping up, little down and then up more… how are you fairing with feed prices? Now you all see why I’m trying so hard to save up for land with pasture… mid west here I come!

Update on the contracted tendon calf

Last August we has a young heifer born with contracted tendons. She walked on her ankle joints of both front legs. I shared with you a trick my livestock vet talked to me about and wanted to give you an update.

Here is a picture of that same calf just 8 months old. As you can see the trick worked (it actually worked within two weeks, but I’ve been spread a bit thin)… She’s up and walking with no issues and has very strong hooves. So, if you find yourself with a calf who is born with contracted tendons, read the blog post before this one and rest assured that it works GREAT!

Correcting contracted tendons in new born calves

Our mix breed beef heifer was bred by our mini Jersey bull before he found a new home on a ranch breeding heifers for first calf size desires. Anyway, after 24 hours she still could not stand on her front two hooves. Come to find out the tendons were contracted and restricting the ability for her to extend her hooves and put weight on them.

I called our livestock vet (he’s another hero in my life) and talked to him about the issues. He explained that he’d seen this before and had an easy fix if dealt with right away. He advised us to take a magazine and tube it up as a splint, then use vet wrap to secure it to the front legs. Then, on his way home from another call, he stopped by and gave our new little girl an injection of Oxtetracycline, explaining that too much calcium in momma’s system created a build up of calcium on the tendon. The Oxtetracycline binds to the calcium attached onto the tendon and allows it to stretch out and become flexible again. Typically, it should only take the one injection to pull the excess calcium away from the tendons. If in three days her legs aren’t completely straight and she’s not standing on her hooves properly, then a second injection may be needed. The splints force her to put the weight on her hooves instead of her first joint. She got her injection last night and we used a Cabella’s magazine cut in half as splints, then vet wrapped them around her legs from just above the first joint down to the bottom of her hooves. So far, she’s putting weight on her hooves and with any luck will have the splints off tomorrow or the next day.

I did some reading and found out that this can also happen to foals, kids, and many other live stock varities. All seem to respond to the same treatment. The dosage of antibiotic varies on the breed and size of livestock so please consult your vet before guessing and injecting too much. A too large of injection can cause the heart to stop which is a sad outcome for all involved!

Best of luck to all of you homesteaders and wish us luck on our new baby girl!

Thelma and Louise – the characters!

I had two beef heifers named Thelma and Louise… Bet you’re wondering why I would name my beef cattle after movie characters and not food names… Well, living in Arizona… and knowing that they too will die in the end… the names just seemed appropriate! I just have to be sure to keep them away from the ol’ Thunderbird and the Grand Canyon so that I can enjoy their gift of meat!

Anyway… enough humor… on to more humor… Yesterday (Labor Day 2008) I was down doing morning chores when a friend stopped by to introduce us to her brother. We were side tracked, talking up a storm when I notice Louise, a Hereford cross, standing with her side to a section of the fence that I’d cut open in the past to let the cattle out into the back 2 acres to graze. I turned just in time to catch Thelma, a Black Angus cross, standing perpendicular to her and you could see the gears turning in her head… You see, just outside of that fence is a coyote fence… which consists of tee posts at 10′ on center running the length of the back pasture fence with six strands of electric fence giving it a height of about five feet. The hot fence runs parallel to the pasture fence but about 3′ outside the fence. This allows the coyote to run the wash out there and if they do become inspired to run and jump the electric fence they will come down between the electric fence and the 4′ field fence with barbed wire running 6″ above that. Coyote can’t jump 4 feet while standing still… they have to run at it to clear it… so once they clear the hot fence, they usually come down hitting their head into the field fence and then have to get back through the hot fence to get away… After a few zaps… they usually don’t return! Anyway… I digress…and apologize for doing so…

So, there stands Thelma with her eyes on the green grass out in the wash… Mind you we’re standing there yaking up a storm and haven’t yet fed the hay…. The next thing I know… Thelma is barreling towards Louise, head down like an experienced spanish bull… and PLOWS into Louise, lifting her off the ground and THROUGH the field fence as well as the six strands of Hot fence. Poor Louise landed out in the field bewildered as to what had just happened… Luckily, we had shut the hot fence off before starting chores or I fear we’d have had a whole lot more to fix then the six connections and the 10′ section of field fence…

Well, rather than chase Louise all around trying to get her back in and keep the others from getting out… we just let them all go out and graze until we tossed hay… then, of coarse, they all came running in… except Louise… who was too scared to go near the fence. After a little calling and a bit of herding we were able to get her in for breakfast… but it was a good lesson to feed the cows first and visit with the company after…

Hope you enjoyed the chuckle as much as we did… once the fencing was all fixed…

Have a great day…