Heifer in labor >8 hours - Help

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Dana Kopp
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Post by Dana Kopp » Tue Mar 14, 2006 11:21 am

The best thing you can do is to learn from your mistake. Do absolutely everything you can to learn about every stage of labor, what is normal and what is not, what you can do and if you are unsure call the vet. Most are more than willing to share knowledge. Know your cows - keep notes from year to year on what their bags do before calving, what their tail set is like, even their attitude toward the rest of the herd and you. The more you know about what is "supposed" to happen and what is "normal" for your cows then the easier it will be to determine that something isn't right. And follow your gut...if your gut feelings are red flags then get the vet out!!

When you think you know everything - look around - I guarantee someone will have something you have never seen before.

There are lots of resources out there - just google "calving AND cow" and see what you get. Almost every Extension office will have something on calving, check out the closest University with an Ag program often they have short courses on managment or books/binders that you can order that detail common diseases, management, feeding, calving, weaning etc for your general area.

There is also a couple books by an English Vet, Eddie Straiton - Calving the Cow and Care of the Calf and Cattle Ailments: Recognition and Treatment (this covers diseases not calving) - both have LOTS of pictures (rather graphic). He uses a dead calf to demonstrate the dystocia positions and how to resolve them and when to get help.

Best of luck!


Dana Kopp
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Jeanne - Simme Valley
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Post by Jeanne - Simme Valley » Tue Mar 14, 2006 3:21 pm

Thank you for letting us know what happened. To those of us who have had breech calves, we know the signs. Now you're an expert on full breech. This is a "fixable" problem. But you have to be careful to cup your hand over the calves hooves as you pull them around. Tricky - but do-able. Like others said, don't be afraid to get some AI gloves & check what's going on. Easier to make a decision as to whether a vet is needed.
Sorry for your loss.
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Post by CattleAnnie » Tue Mar 14, 2006 6:36 pm

Ljv,

Just a quick note:
If you have any neighbours that have cattle, remember that they'll be a wealth of information - and I haven't met too many old hands with stock that weren't willing to share their knowledge over a cup of coffee or even lend a hand to folks who are new to owning livestock and wanting to learn.

If you find yourself in doubt about the stock, and can't get a hold of a vet, maybe give one of the neighbour's a quick call - most people are more than happy to help when there's trouble afoot.



Take care and keep your chin up.
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Post by Caustic Burno » Tue Mar 14, 2006 7:24 pm

ljV wrote:Vet came - tail first, dead. Vet told us it was a very weird presentation and hard to detect to someone new to calving. Learned from our mistake. Yes, thought it was stage 1 when it was actually stage 2. Shame on us, but I came here for advise, not ridicule.


Your gettin advice you are dang lucky you are not putting a bullet in that heifers head as well, some breechs can't be pulled.
If there is one thing I can not stand is people letting cattle suffer for no reason.
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Post by buckaroo_bif » Tue Mar 14, 2006 8:44 pm

Caustic Burno wrote:If there is one thing I can not stand is people letting cattle suffer for no reason.


and That is what I been talking about!!!

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Post by lakading » Tue Mar 14, 2006 10:32 pm

Caustic Burno wrote:
ljV wrote:Vet came - tail first, dead. Vet told us it was a very weird presentation and hard to detect to someone new to calving. Learned from our mistake. Yes, thought it was stage 1 when it was actually stage 2. Shame on us, but I came here for advise, not ridicule.


Your gettin advice you are dang lucky you are not putting a bullet in that heifers head as well, some breechs can't be pulled.
If there is one thing I can not stand is people letting cattle suffer for no reason.


Yes, but at least it seems they're willing to learn from their mistakes and are not the type who will continually mistreat animals.
Enjoy the journey!!!

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Post by Bama » Tue Mar 14, 2006 10:52 pm

ljV wrote:Vet came - tail first, dead. Vet told us it was a very weird presentation and hard to detect to someone new to calving. Learned from our mistake. Yes, thought it was stage 1 when it was actually stage 2. Shame on us, but I came here for advise, not ridicule.


From my experience when one comes this way you usually wind up cutting it up to get it out. They can be turned but its a lot of effort. If the calf is already dead its easier to cut it out with a chain saw. ( no, not a homelite )
Culling solves 75% of your problems.

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Post by Jeanne - Simme Valley » Wed Mar 15, 2006 5:55 am

We have had a few breech (mostly just backwards which isn't a big problem). But full breech - if caught fairly early - can be taken care of. Hubby makes cow stand & pushes calf back in. He cups the hoof in his hand & with the other hand somehow twists the hock & pulls the hoof back. Then does the other one. Thing is you need lots of lube. We have a little Central Tractor pump, and I pump while he holds the tube inside the cow & lubes all over. Works slick for any hard calving.
Oh, knock on wood - we only have 5 left - and we haven't palpated one cow to date. Generall there is something malpresented or twins tangles or something requiring assistance.
Thing is, this board member observed his cows enough to see that she was pushing & not progressing. Now he knows this was NOT Stage 1, and HE WON'T LET A COW GO THAT LONG AGAIN. If no progress in 1 hour - they need checking.
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Post by dun » Wed Mar 15, 2006 8:40 am

When reaching into a cow I never used to sleeve up, just bare hands. I noticed the vet the other day sleeved up before going into a cow so I asked him about it. He said that if he's only going to have to go in one time he just goes bare handed, but if he thinks he'll have to go in multiple times he sleeves. He maintanes that the hair on your hands and arms will irritate the insdie of the cow and cause swelling if you keep going in and out bare handed but the don;t swell as bad if you use sleeves. I had alwasy thought the swelling was just a natural thing. This wek-end I got to put the saleeving deal into practice. Lo and behold, even though I was in and out of the cow probably a dozen or more times, no swelling.

dun

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Post by lakading » Wed Mar 15, 2006 10:35 am

dun wrote:When reaching into a cow I never used to sleeve up, just bare hands. I noticed the vet the other day sleeved up before going into a cow so I asked him about it. He said that if he's only going to have to go in one time he just goes bare handed, but if he thinks he'll have to go in multiple times he sleeves. He maintanes that the hair on your hands and arms will irritate the insdie of the cow and cause swelling if you keep going in and out bare handed but the don;t swell as bad if you use sleeves. I had alwasy thought the swelling was just a natural thing. This wek-end I got to put the saleeving deal into practice. Lo and behold, even though I was in and out of the cow probably a dozen or more times, no swelling.

dun


Great tip. Thanks for sharing.
Enjoy the journey!!!

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Post by msscamp » Wed Mar 15, 2006 12:11 pm

dun wrote:When reaching into a cow I never used to sleeve up, just bare hands. I noticed the vet the other day sleeved up before going into a cow so I asked him about it. He said that if he's only going to have to go in one time he just goes bare handed, but if he thinks he'll have to go in multiple times he sleeves. He maintanes that the hair on your hands and arms will irritate the insdie of the cow and cause swelling if you keep going in and out bare handed but the don;t swell as bad if you use sleeves. I had alwasy thought the swelling was just a natural thing. This wek-end I got to put the saleeving deal into practice. Lo and behold, even though I was in and out of the cow probably a dozen or more times, no swelling.

dun


Thanks for sharing that, Dun.
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Post by WagaAgeyv » Wed Mar 15, 2006 12:21 pm

ljV wrote:Vet came - tail first, dead. Vet told us it was a very weird presentation and hard to detect to someone new to calving. Learned from our mistake. Yes, thought it was stage 1 when it was actually stage 2. Shame on us, but I came here for advise, not ridicule.


Ok this is my opinion! You guys did not have to be so ruff and ljv if you have been on here you can see they get ruff and opinionated at times. Just remember they started out once as well and they have probably forgotten that. It took guts to ask these guys a few things since you see how they answer others.

Keep coming back and maybe you as well as I and others can learn from all of our mistakes.

Good Luck on your next one!
Waga------Cow
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Post by Jeanne - Simme Valley » Thu Mar 16, 2006 6:57 am

But, Dun, don't you ever worry about disease?? We were always told to sleeve up for your own health safety, especially on a premie - possible abortion due to disease.
Ken NEVER green-arm's it.
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Post by Caustic Burno » Thu Mar 16, 2006 6:59 am

WagaAgeyv wrote:
ljV wrote:Vet came - tail first, dead. Vet told us it was a very weird presentation and hard to detect to someone new to calving. Learned from our mistake. Yes, thought it was stage 1 when it was actually stage 2. Shame on us, but I came here for advise, not ridicule.


Ok this is my opinion! You guys did not have to be so ruff and ljv if you have been on here you can see they get ruff and opinionated at times. Just remember they started out once as well and they have probably forgotten that. It took guts to ask these guys a few things since you see how they answer others.

Keep coming back and maybe you as well as I and others can learn from all of our mistakes.

Good Luck on your next one!


Opinon's are just like buttholes everyone has one and they all stink.
This is a rough business and if you want to survive toughen up,
I bet old IV doesn't make that mistake again They have no one to blame but themselves have to learn to be responsible for your actions and outcomes 600 dollar lesson is a good teacher. Time to move on that calf is worm or coyote food now.
Money doesn’t buy happiness, but the lack does buy misery.

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Post by dun » Thu Mar 16, 2006 7:17 am

Jeanne - Simme Valley wrote:But, Dun, don't you ever worry about disease?? We were always told to sleeve up for your own health safety, especially on a premie - possible abortion due to disease.
Ken NEVER green-arm's it.


Normally if your arm is green you need to reach just a bit lower. Never tried pulling a calf through there so don;t know but I'ld probably sleeve up for that. As for contracting anything from the birth canal, I rely on 2 things, well maybe 3. Soap, hot water and luck. I learned the first 2 uses as a youngin and the third I've relied on all my life.

dun

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