Dr. Marybeth Feutz grew up in suburban New Jersey, and after living in urban Massachusetts for a few years through college and veterinary school, she landed in West Lafayette, Indiana. She completed a residency in Large Animal Internal Medicine at the Purdue University School of Veterinary Medicine, where she met her future husband, John. After John finished veterinary school, Marybeth stayed at Purdue to complete a PhD in equine respiratory disease. With John’s strong family (and family business) ties in southwestern Indiana, the eventual move to the farm was a no-brainer. In addition to the family veterinary practice, Marybeth and John also have a family cattle farm. Together with John’s parents, the couple has a cow-calf farm where they raise registered Angus and commercial beef cattle. They live on part of the farm with their four indoor cats, two barn cats, and two dogs.
Marybeth is very active in the Indiana Veterinary Medical Association (IVMA) and the Indiana Farm Bureau (IFB). She sits on the Continuing Education and Annual Meeting Committees for the IVMA and helps to organize speakers for their annual meeting. She is also on the State Women’s Leadership Committee for the IFB. She sees her involvement in these organizations as a way to be sure the veterinarians and the farmers in Indiana continue to talk to and work with each other, especially as delicate issues involving farm animals and animal welfare continue to be important.
Marybeth has had an interesting transition from city life to farm life, and talks about life on her farm at her blog, Alarm Clock Wars. Even though she is a board-certified specialist in Large Animal Internal Medicine, she still had a lot to learn about daily life on a cattle farm. In talking with friends and family with no experience in farming or farm animal care, she has heard all kinds of questions and misconceptions. Her favorite was when someone asked her if she was going to churn her own butter from the milk from their cattle. (They aren’t that kind of cattle.) Even with all her education and training, she still had a big learning curve to be able to participate in animal care on their farm, and to be able to hold her own in a conversation with many of their farmer friends. She knew that if she was having this kind of trouble understanding what farmers are talking about, people without an agriculture background must be having an even harder time!
AgriCultured is her solution to that problem. This website is the place to come to get any kind of agriculture question answered. Are you confused by all the labeling at the grocery store? “Antibiotic-free,” “organic,” “hormone-free” – what do these really mean, anyway? Do you wonder why pigs, chickens, and dairy cows live inside, while beef cows live outside? Do you know what the difference is between a dairy cow and a beef cow? Get these questions, and so many more, answered here. Marybeth has a unique perspective on agriculture. Because she did not grow up on a farm, she has learned many of these things on the way to being a farmwife, and has asked tons of questions – questions other people may be afraid to ask, or may not know to ask. She has a great way of taking farming information and translating it so people without that farm background can understand what is going on, and why.