No day off for local farmers working through severe weather

DODGEVILLE, Wis (WMTV) - While many people worked from home or took the day off to avoid the polar vortex outside, local farmers were out working even harder than normal.

Krista Dolan, the co-owner of Dolan Farms in Dodgeville, said the negative 25 degree temperature could not stop them from carrying out their normal chores and then some.

“I keep myself moving at a faster pace just to keep warm and get it done faster,” Dolan said.

She said owning a farm comes with a long list of daily chores, and when the temperature drops, the list only gets longer. She said she is in charge of the calves from newborns on up. She said she has had to go beyond the normal feeding routine.

“Because it is so cold I am giving them a bottle of electrolytes. It will just help keep their body warm,” Dolan said.

Dolan said the cold brings challenges to the work flow.

“We did have a couple milker units that were froze up this morning, but we put a heater on them and it quickly thawed. We have to keep our milk compressor going to keep our milk cool,” she said.

She said their priorities during extreme cold spells include shelter, putting jackets on the calves and making sure the water does not freeze by doing hourly checks.

Dolan said it is all worth it, if it means the more than 400 cows under their care are happy.

“I just love the new challenges that come with every day, even when it’s this cold,” she said.

Dolan said a concern looking ahead to the weekend is warming temperatures. She said when there is a big temperature change, the cows can get sick.