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Cow can’t get up....

Posted: Mon Apr 15, 2019 6:14 pm
by scheff
Hi everyone, I have an 8YR old cow that I rotated to a new pasture yesterday... and this morning couldn’t get up. She’s not in great shape, lost a little mass over the winter, but not scrawny either. She also has a 3 month calf. Questions for the group are, after how long should I give up on her getting back up again... and probably a dumb question, but is it easier for them to get up on an incline upwards or downwards? Thanks in advance for your ideas.

Re: Cow can’t get up....

Posted: Mon Apr 15, 2019 6:50 pm
by Bright Raven
Considering she had a bad winter and has a calf taking more from her, you might try a mineral injection or the mineral tubes that go in a caulking gun like apprarutus (those are administered orally). Minerals like calcium, copper, magnesium, etc are essential for motor function and physiological function. I say that thinking she might have used up all her stored mineral nutrients and needs a supplement.

Re: Cow can’t get up....

Posted: Mon Apr 15, 2019 6:58 pm
by scheff
Thanks for the suggestion BR, I’ll try that in the morning. She’s eating sweet feed, and trying to get up occasionally, but so far hasn’t made it.

Re: Cow can’t get up....

Posted: Mon Apr 15, 2019 8:10 pm
by scheff
Follow up question on the 3 month old calf. Assuming this cow doesn’t get up, what are the calf’s chances?

Re: Cow can’t get up....

Posted: Mon Apr 15, 2019 8:19 pm
by ez14.
scheff wrote:
Mon Apr 15, 2019 8:10 pm
Follow up question on the 3 month old calf. Assuming this cow doesn’t get up, what are the calf’s chances?
Calf should be fine as long as you feed it a good calf feed away from the rest of the herd

Re: Cow can’t get up....

Posted: Mon Apr 15, 2019 8:33 pm
by scheff
Thanks EZ. It’s a nice looking bull calf, wish is was a nice replacement though. Any other thoughts out there on how to get her up, or how long I should give her? She’s been one of my best producers, so just don’t want to throw in the towel too soon.

Re: Cow can’t get up....

Posted: Tue Apr 16, 2019 1:26 am
by Dirt Farmer
Try borrowing a hip lifter from your vet to help get her up. As far as uphill or downhill, keep her on flat ground. She can suffocate under her own weight if pointed downhill.

When to put her down is a hard one to answer on the internet. You don’t want to put her down but also don’t want her to suffer needlessly. It’s more of a judgement call and more information about her condition could help us point you in the right direction.

One thing I will add is to not let her sit in the same position too long. Her weight needs to be shifted from side to side so her circulation doesn’t get cut off and cause permanent injury. You said she is trying to get up so hopefully she is moving enough on her own.

There are a lot of threads on this subject so you can search and find more info. Keep us updated and best of luck.

Re: Cow can’t get up....

Posted: Tue Apr 16, 2019 1:42 am
by Dirt Farmer
I have a question for the gurus that relates to this. What is the best way to give her energy/nutrition while down? I’m wondering if there is something fast acting to give a cow some strength short term to help her get up and also what are the best feeds to keep her from losing condition while down?

Re: Cow can’t get up....

Posted: Tue Apr 16, 2019 2:05 am
by Nesikep
There are dextrose IV's you can give, that would be a good short term boost.

You think she just laid down and couldn't get back up or could there be more to this? Yeah, kinda hard to tell if they have a leg injury without them standing to begin with.

When to give up? I usually say it's when the cow gives up... though my friend had some downer ewes and she took care of them for a month and they finally got up.. I'm patient but I don't think I'm that patient.
Last fall I had a 5 month old calf get stuck, dehydrated and hypoxic, I got him back to physical health but he was too dumb to eat or drink... I put him down when I ran out of milk replacer to feed him with.

Re: Cow can’t get up....

Posted: Tue Apr 16, 2019 6:27 am
by JMJ Farms
Long as she’s eating I feed her and keep trying. Dexamethasone and MultiMin wouldn’t hurt her.

Re: Cow can’t get up....

Posted: Tue Apr 16, 2019 7:08 am
by Lucky
I I had one stay down for 4 days this year. Gave her multimin, dex, and a dose of LA300 and just kept feed and water out for her. Didn’t figure she’d get up but she did. Good luck with her.

Re: Cow can’t get up....

Posted: Tue Apr 16, 2019 7:10 am
by ohiosteve
Nesikep wrote:
Tue Apr 16, 2019 2:05 am
There are dextrose IV's you can give, that would be a good short term boost.

You think she just laid down and couldn't get back up or could there be more to this? Yeah, kinda hard to tell if they have a leg injury without them standing to begin with.

When to give up? I usually say it's when the cow gives up... though my friend had some downer ewes and she took care of them for a month and they finally got up.. I'm patient but I don't think I'm that patient.
Last fall I had a 5 month old calf get stuck, dehydrated and hypoxic, I got him back to physical health but he was too dumb to eat or drink... I put him down when I ran out of milk replacer to feed him with.
I would give her 2 bottles of dextrose IV immediately. It is just an instant shot of energy I have seen this work numerous times on cows like this

Re: Cow can’t get up....

Posted: Tue Apr 23, 2019 7:31 pm
by backhoeboogie
She'd have gotten two full tubes of CMPK when I first discovered she was down.

Re: Cow can’t get up....

Posted: Wed Apr 24, 2019 12:40 pm
by Hippie Rancher
any luck? I have seen a week or more, but I usually give up at 2 weeks barring other circumstances. if she is trying that is good, get some other people to help tail her up or if you have equipment to lift, once on their feet they will usually make it.

Re: Cow can’t get up....

Posted: Wed Apr 24, 2019 8:14 pm
by JW IN VA
I would definitely ee she gets some Mag and Calcium.Probably calcium or energy is low.Spring grass make s them feel full but they aren't getting as much nutrition as we'd like.
Ran into that here with the flush of grass and hay from last season's abundant rains.Cows burnt a lot of fat this winter that they didn't have.Have been supplementing hay with a 16 to 17 per cent grain mix for the last month and cows are improving.
For a down cow here,one of the first things vets usually give is an IV of Calcium and Magnesium.