Rough hair on some calves.

Cattle problems.
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Ky hills
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Rough hair on some calves.

Post by Ky hills » Sat Jun 08, 2019 4:46 pm

Most of our older calves born back in January and February that are out of an Angus bull, have long rough reddish hair coats. The Hereford calves which are a bit younger and the later born black calves don’t have rough hair and the black calves have been jet black since birth. The first black calves were born with the brownish coats that have gotten rougher with time but I know they will eventually turn black. But wondering if they will shed that off eventually and be smoother or if they will remain rough? I wonder if it had to do with the time of year they were born?



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Re: Rough hair on some calves.

Post by Ebenezer » Sat Jun 08, 2019 5:52 pm

Merely opinion: either genetics or minerals. Maybe a difference in the mineral or nutritional status for the dams?

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Re: Rough hair on some calves.

Post by ALACOWMAN » Sat Jun 08, 2019 6:01 pm

I have a few the same way..around here our fescue don't do em any favors.. Knowing my cattle I'm leaning toward minerals...
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Re: Rough hair on some calves.

Post by TCRanch » Sat Jun 08, 2019 6:22 pm

Similar situation. Angus bulls with Angus, Angus/Hereford and a couple Angus/Simm. When we were getting ready to work them in May, Cydectin was recommended as a wormer because it would "slick them right up". I have yet to notice a significant difference other than normal shedding. I suspect it's because they were born earlier when they needed a heavy coat and just takes longer to shed. Some of my cattle (including calves) are slick as snot and others are still in the ugly stage. They all get the same mineral, protein tubs, cubes, etc.

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Re: Rough hair on some calves.

Post by Ebenezer » Sun Jun 09, 2019 4:42 pm

https://i.postimg.cc/7YHdG7sc/chart.jpg

You can zoom in on this wheel type bred/calving date calculator to see details of gestational programming. The hair issue could merely be that the development occurred under different conditions for the bred cow.

There was some sheep research some years back that said that if nutrients were limited during the muscle development time of gestation some long muscle tissue was not created within the fetus and no amount of feeding or nutrition after birth could cause the lambs to regain, regrow or express that genetic potential. I'm guessing that it would be true in cattle also and similarly it could affect any part if the deficiency occurred during that portion of gestation.

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Re: Rough hair on some calves.

Post by Ky hills » Sun Jun 09, 2019 6:45 pm

Ebenezer wrote:
Sun Jun 09, 2019 4:42 pm
https://i.postimg.cc/7YHdG7sc/chart.jpg

You can zoom in on this wheel type bred/calving date calculator to see details of gestational programming. The hair issue could merely be that the development occurred under different conditions for the bred cow.

There was some sheep research some years back that said that if nutrients were limited during the muscle development time of gestation some long muscle tissue was not created within the fetus and no amount of feeding or nutrition after birth could cause the lambs to regain, regrow or express that genetic potential. I'm guessing that it would be true in cattle also and similarly it could affect any part if the deficiency occurred during that portion of gestation.
Thank you Ebemezer, that is a very informative chart. It could very well be that it is a mineral issue. We were feeding a mineral that should have been more than sufficient however in thinking about it their were circumstances that were a bit different last year in which they may have not consumed enough to benefit. We have always had trouble with mineral feeders getting torn up, so had a now deceased friend build some. I placed them close by in and around our barn lots. The thinking being I could more easily keep them in mineral. Last year was extremely wet and grass was unusually available so they stayed in the back 40 literally a lot more than normal. So the ones that calved later could have had more mineral consumption when coming to feed in winter, whereas the ones that calved in early winter did not get what they needed.

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Re: Rough hair on some calves.

Post by Ky hills » Mon Jun 10, 2019 8:48 am

Here is an example two calves one Born late January from a cow and one in April from a first calf heifer.
Image

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Re: Rough hair on some calves.

Post by DCA farm » Mon Jun 10, 2019 8:52 am

I bought some rough haired pairs in poor shape all I did was put them on grass and mineral they slicked up

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Re: Rough hair on some calves.

Post by Jeanne - Simme Valley » Mon Jun 10, 2019 9:06 am

It's just baby fuzz. All my calves are born in dead of winter and they ALL have that hair coat. It will shed, but takes a while.
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Re: Rough hair on some calves.

Post by Little Cow » Tue Jun 11, 2019 7:11 am

This is interesting. I've heard about minerals being the cause before. Hard to tell if the minerals help after you put them out, or if the calves just slicked up because they shed out.

Similarly, has anyone noticed a different coat type depending on color? If your breed produces different colors, do the browns or tans tend to have curly hairs and the blacks have straighter hairs? It seems to be that way in Dexters. Duns have a scruffiness that is really just a curl to their coat hair. They are healthy, fat, and look the same going in the freezer. The Dexter red seems to be straight and slick, like the black. Weird.

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Re: Rough hair on some calves.

Post by JParrott » Tue Jun 11, 2019 12:01 pm

We've got some yearlings we bought this winter from Tennessee and one of the neighbors calves that decided he liked our herd better that have yet to slick up. The runaway I understand because he didn't get doctored and hasn't been on the same grass, salt, and mineral tubs the rest of the herd has. All the others are as slick and as fat as hogs - bulls, cows, and calves.

I'm leaning towards mineral and diet while in utero and afterwards both.

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Re: Rough hair on some calves.

Post by Little Cow » Tue Jun 11, 2019 3:32 pm

I can't remember the brand of chelated minerals we gave the cows to get ready for AI. Does anyone know any good brands? Did wonders for their coats, too.

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Re: Rough hair on some calves.

Post by elkwc » Tue Jun 11, 2019 5:20 pm

I see it on fall born and early winter calves every year. Bought a Hereford 2 y/o last year and he had a rough coat. We keep out good minerals and also give the bulls multi min 90 twice a year. This year he has slicked off. I believe environment, weather conditions and mineral/feed deficiencies all play a factor in it. I've heard the lack of muscle development early will have an effect their whole life. I've seen cases where I wondered if maybe it had an influence then the next one I've watched developed as expected.

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Re: Rough hair on some calves.

Post by SPH » Tue Jun 11, 2019 9:45 pm

elkwc touched on some good points. Environment and nutrition play a big part in shedding hair. This article is nearly 5 years old but it is an interesting read: https://www.drovers.com/article/genetic ... r-shedding There are several other studies out there too regarding hair shedding if you do a search.

The fescue part especially I can attest plays big factor. Our summer pasture was mostly fesuce and combined with a hot and humid Iowa summer the cows really had to tough it out and it was no surprise to find cows standing in the creek or hiding out in the trees to seek relief. Will be interesting to see how our weaning weights this year compare to other years as we cut the lease on that summer pasture and the pasture we have on the owned acres is much better quality and not overgrown with fescue.

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Re: Rough hair on some calves.

Post by gcreekrch » Tue Jun 11, 2019 10:27 pm

That reddish tinge and long fuzz is usually attributed to a shortage of copper, or possibly very high molybdenum which copper offsets. Do some feed samples, we feed copper that is about 5 points away from being toxic to offset the moly here. All health related issues are much better than before we started feeding our own mineral.
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