Backwards

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cypressfarms
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Backwards

Post by cypressfarms » Fri Mar 17, 2006 7:45 pm

Just thought I'd share an experience with the board.

So far this year, I've had 7 calves, three of which were born back feet first not making it out alive. I've never had this bad of luck before, and no one I've talked to can ever remember having three backwards calves in a row.

Talked to the vet yesterday, and he said short of having the cow in a chute beforehand, there's nothing that can be done. He said that he actually only saves about 25% of "backwards" calves. Once you know the calf is backwards,unless your there the minute the calf emerges, your chances seem slim.

One good note is that I haven't lost any of the cows, although I came close with the last one; she didn't want to let me pull the calf.

Anyone else had this sort of luck?


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Re: Backwards

Post by Caustic Burno » Fri Mar 17, 2006 7:52 pm

cypressfarms wrote:Just thought I'd share an experience with the board.

So far this year, I've had 7 calves, three of which were born back feet first not making it out alive. I've never had this bad of luck before, and no one I've talked to can ever remember having three backwards calves in a row.

Talked to the vet yesterday, and he said short of having the cow in a chute beforehand, there's nothing that can be done. He said that he actually only saves about 25% of "backwards" calves. Once you know the calf is backwards,unless your there the minute the calf emerges, your chances seem slim.

One good note is that I haven't lost any of the cows, although I came close with the last one; she didn't want to let me pull the calf.

Anyone else had this sort of luck?


This is where I start to have problems with the cow as cow calf cost have just went to 800 bucks a cow. Real problem is do you sell the cow and buy new and replacement cost are to the moon. Do you cull and just put the money in the pocket.
Last do you give them another chance.
I really have to evaluate the cow hard at this point.
This is probabally the hardest culling decision for me as I don't have a problem culling.
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Post by Beefy » Fri Mar 17, 2006 7:54 pm

are the cows all half sisters?
So this doe walks out of a forest...sez "I'm NEVER doing that for fifty bucks again!"

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Post by redfornow » Fri Mar 17, 2006 8:02 pm

Cypress,

What size where the calfs? It seems to me them backwards calfs are almost always the big ones.
Where they all teh same sire? or did you AI em?

Hope it gets better for you


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Post by Fred » Fri Mar 17, 2006 8:08 pm

I had a vet tell me that a lot of calves are born backwards without assistance and you just don't know about it because you weren"t there when they were born. Just a comment, don't really know.

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Post by Beefy » Fri Mar 17, 2006 8:12 pm

ive seen several born backwards with no problems.

if the cow pushes it right on out its fine but if she hesitates theres where you run into problems. the placenta detaches as the calf passes thru and the calf will drown.
So this doe walks out of a forest...sez "I'm NEVER doing that for fifty bucks again!"

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Post by MikeC » Fri Mar 17, 2006 8:17 pm

The real killer on a backwards calf is that it smothers. When the cow gets everything out but the nose, she quits pushing cause she thinks she's done.

No telling how many are born backwards if you ain't there to see them all.
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Re: Backwards

Post by aplusmnt » Fri Mar 17, 2006 9:50 pm

Caustic Burno wrote:
cypressfarms wrote:Just thought I'd share an experience with the board.

So far this year, I've had 7 calves, three of which were born back feet first not making it out alive. I've never had this bad of luck before, and no one I've talked to can ever remember having three backwards calves in a row.

Talked to the vet yesterday, and he said short of having the cow in a chute beforehand, there's nothing that can be done. He said that he actually only saves about 25% of "backwards" calves. Once you know the calf is backwards,unless your there the minute the calf emerges, your chances seem slim.

One good note is that I haven't lost any of the cows, although I came close with the last one; she didn't want to let me pull the calf.

Anyone else had this sort of luck?


This is where I start to have problems with the cow as cow calf cost have just went to 800 bucks a cow. Real problem is do you sell the cow and buy new and replacement cost are to the moon. Do you cull and just put the money in the pocket.
Last do you give them another chance.
I really have to evaluate the cow hard at this point.
This is probabally the hardest culling decision for me as I don't have a problem culling.


If a cow has a backwards calf is she more apt to have another one that way or many more?
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Post by cypressfarms » Fri Mar 17, 2006 10:07 pm

Sorry guys/gals,

Had to step out. #13 decided to calve, so now it's 3 out of 8 that were backwards.

All of these cows are having their 2nd calve, none of them are sisters, and 2 were sired by my dad's angus bull, one by my brangus bull.

One dead bull calf was huge, had to have been close to 100 lbs. 2nd one was a medium sized heifer calf, maybe 80 lbs. 3rd was a small sized bull calf, maybe 70 lbs. Third one was breech (one back leg sticking out when I got there), and had to pull it.

All had fine calves their first calve, as heifers, none needing any assistance. All are brangus.

Hard for me to cull them, as I've never seen any info to point torwards fetal presentation being repetitive.
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Post by Caustic Burno » Fri Mar 17, 2006 10:10 pm

I have found that problem pregnacys usually don't go away.
If a cow has problems more than once seems like they continue. I am not talking about loosing calfs cause over the years I have lost them to about everthing under the sun. Had one calved one time I looked for a couple of days for that calf she had it on the side of the stock tank I guess little ball of hamburger went in head first. Popped up in the tank a few days latter and riper.
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Post by cypressfarms » Fri Mar 17, 2006 10:17 pm

Caustic Burno wrote:I looked for a couple of days for that calf she had it on the side of the stock tank I guess little ball of hamburger went in head first. Popped up in the tank a few days latter and riper.


I bet that wasn't fun to clean up
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Post by Beefy » Fri Mar 17, 2006 10:18 pm

but all these cows were bred to the same bull right? i swear some malpresentations are the bulls fault. i should do a study on it.
So this doe walks out of a forest...sez "I'm NEVER doing that for fifty bucks again!"

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Post by cypressfarms » Fri Mar 17, 2006 10:29 pm

Beefy wrote:but all these cows were bred to the same bull right? i swear some malpresentations are the bulls fault. i should do a study on it.


Originally I thought they were all from my dad's angus, but went back and looked the dates up and one was from my brangus bull (the first dead one - 100 pounder). The angus that sired the last two calves was just sold, and at 5 years old, he never once sired a backwards calf. One wise person did mention to me about the possibility of it being the bulls "fault".
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Re: Backwards

Post by DiamondSCattleCo » Fri Mar 17, 2006 11:51 pm

cypressfarms wrote:Talked to the vet yesterday, and he said short of having the cow in a chute beforehand, there's nothing that can be done. He said that he actually only saves about 25% of "backwards" calves. Once you know the calf is backwards,unless your there the minute the calf emerges, your chances seem slim.


I spose once the vet gets to see the backwards calf, its likely too late, but I've never lost a backwards calf in 20 odd years.

As soon as you see the hooves coming backwards, that cow needs to be in the headgate. Make sure you have a bucket of COLD water. Once she's in the headgate, pulling a backwards calf isn't quite as time sensitive that everyone lets on it is, as long as you've been vigilant with the cow herd. Once the butt of the calf clears the pelvis, you need to pull hard and fast to prevent drowning. If you have a helper, get them to belt the cow on the nose whenever she pushes. Everytime the cow strains, she's pushing more fluid into the calf's lungs. Pull with the legs down and back. Once you can get your shoulder between the legs of the calf and the cow, do so, and wrap your arm around the calf like a sack of grain. Push off from the cow with your free hand. Doing this is a faster way to pull and less likely to damage the calf's pelvis.

Once the calf is out, keep it on your shoulder hanging upside side. Try not to put much pressure on its stomach, and have your helper run their hands from stomach, down the sides of the calf, along the throat and out to the nose. Doing this helps drain the fluid from the calf. If you don't have help, hang the back legs of the calf over your corral fence and do it yourself. Once the fluid has quit coming out of the mouth and nose, if the calf isn't breathin on its own yet, lay it down and splash the head with the cold water. Also grab a straw and blow into the calfs nose. This will sometimes kick start the calf into breathing.

Like you Cypress, I've never seen anything that indicates backwards calves are a genetic problem with an animal. Any of my cows that had backwards calves either delivered all normally after that, or had all delivered normally before. I have had years with alot of backwards calves, and culled the bull just in case.

Rod

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Re: Backwards

Post by randiliana » Sat Mar 18, 2006 2:33 pm

DiamondSCattleCo wrote:Like you Cypress, I've never seen anything that indicates backwards calves are a genetic problem with an animal. Any of my cows that had backwards calves either delivered all normally after that, or had all delivered normally before. I have had years with alot of backwards calves, and culled the bull just in case.

Rod


I would have to agree with you both on this too. We have never lost a backwards calf either, and my hubby watched one born backwards last year. We normally run them in at the first sign that they are backwards, but she had it almost born so he just watched, to make sure she got up right away. No problem at all. Also, any cows that we have had that had a backwards calves had either always had normally presented calves or went on to have normally presented calves.

We had the vet out yesterday, to do a BSE test. Since he was here and I happened to think about it :shock: , I asked his opinion on backwards (and upside down). His thoughts on backwards calves were that for the first several months the calf moves around quite a bit in the uterus, and that they eventually get too big to turn around so they are "stuck" being backwards(or forwards). He had no good reason for upside down ones tho....
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