TAYLOR — Heritage Park Petting Farm’s longtime Jersey Dairy Cow, “Gracie,” is under medical care for what appears to be age-related weight-loss issues, park staff said.
Gracie is an 11-year-old Jersey Dairy Cow who was rescued from a dairy farm. She is a “freemartin,” which means she cannot have babies, so she was of no use to a dairy farmer. Gracie has lived her entire life at the Petting Farm and in the past year, has started losing weight.
Medical experts say she is at life expectancy, which is between 10 to 15 years in a setting like a petting farm — and usually much less. Veterinarians check on her bi-weekly. They have done several tests to find out why she is losing weight, but those tests did not find anything specific to treat.
Gracie is still eating and acting like her normal self. She is offered unlimited hay, given grain and her favorite treats daily. She is on electrolyte treatments every couple days for gastrointestinal issues. The staff at the farm is trying to let Gracie live out her time as natural as possible doing all her favorite things.
The weight-loss has stopped, but the way Jersey dairy cows are built, their ribs and hip bones show prominently so visitors often question her appearance.
“Gracie is the face of the farm and is adored by all,” Petting Farm Manager Melanie Shihadeh said. “The farm staff works tirelessly to manage her symptoms, and is truly dedicated to giving her and all the animals at the farm the best life possible”