Big Calf taking its good ol time to nurse

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mhill

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We pulled a huge calf the other day. Problem is he won't nurse consistently. We had to tube him after birth and tryed to teach him the next day, but fed with a bottle. He starts to latch on then puts so much pressure into the udder that it slips out of his mouth. He is not nursing when no one is around because his mommas udder is full. I heard somewhere that big calves can sometime be real stupid and stubborn. Anybody had an experience with this. He is a real nice calf but I'm growing a bit tired of sitting and holding his mouth on the udder. Should I just leave him alone till he gets hungry enough and he'll eventually figure it out?
 

hillbilly

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Big calves are slow because of what they had to "go through" to get here.
Somtimes there brain gets starved for o2 in the process. Some get over it, some don't. I'm not going to discourage you from doing all you can for your calf, If he makes it he might be a good'n. Make sure you cut him.
Mountain William
 

jt

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mhill":2db2ff9w said:
We pulled a huge calf the other day. Problem is he won't nurse consistently. We had to tube him after birth and tryed to teach him the next day, but fed with a bottle. He starts to latch on then puts so much pressure into the udder that it slips out of his mouth. He is not nursing when no one is around because his mommas udder is full. I heard somewhere that big calves can sometime be real stupid and stubborn. Anybody had an experience with this. He is a real nice calf but I'm growing a bit tired of sitting and holding his mouth on the udder. Should I just leave him alone till he gets hungry enough and he'll eventually figure it out?

i have had the same problem in the past.. it does seem that the bigger calves are slower to catch on sometimes. also, calves that go thru a hard birth (breach, head turned back, etc. are sometimes slow too) my process is this.. i tube them and do whatever it takes to give them a chance.. sometimes it means tubing them for 3-4 days until they get their strength.. once they have their strength, i leave them alone and watch them... if they arent nursing you will know it in a couple of days.. they will start going down, but usually i have had good luck and they take off on their own.

i have had to start tubing again for a couple of days, but not usually.

good luck

jt
 

TheBullLady

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Funny.. we pulled a calf Monday night.. the first big one we've had for a long time. We fed him colostrum the first feeding, and ended up feeding him for another day on a bottle before we could get him to stand up well enough to reach mom. After another day of helping him get on the cow, he's now nursing well on his own. I also gave him dexamethasone as soon as he was born.. it's invaluable when you have a calf that's had a hard birth.

They are definately a little slower than a normal birth. You have to baby them along to get them going sometimes, but in my opinion, worth the work!

You might want to milk the cow and feed that until he can nurse on his own. That way you don't risk the cow drying up, and he's getting all the nutrients he needs.

Good luck!
 

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