Bottle calf having a seizure??? Help!

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Nov 2, 2005
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Bastrop, Texas
I have a bottle calf, I have had him since he was a few hours old. He is now 3 months. Was doing greatuntill 2 days ago. I came out and he appeaed to be cast and struggleing but now with how he is acting i think it was a siezure or ? He is so weak wont get up, so you pick him up and his head jerks around to the side, and he will fall right over as soon as you let go. but very eager to eat his bottles. After he eats he is ok for a while. Then he lays flat out. He does get up and drink though out the day. But same thing now, but he is laying flat out and having spasmn like movements with his eyes rolled back in his head. Has food, water and hay 24/7. What do you think?

Also he has mucus that comes out of his ears, posted about it on here before. Before this started heathly normal calf.

I forgot to ad-- a goat eating the same milk bag that I got 3 days ago fell over dead. Nothing wrong with her last night, this morning go out and dead. Do you think its the milk?

Just went out and the calf is trying so hard to live...
Hi, Sorry to hear about your calf. II'd call the vet, quick. I'd read that label on the milk bag. What is it, a univeral type of milk replacer.?? Dun, Milkmaid, Msscamp and Alice to name a few are good. I would pm( private message) them.I don;t know if Milkmaid's computer is still broken, though. I wish I could help you more. Hope your calf gets better. Merry
AA I had one three weeks ago that was having seizures about every 45 seconds. It was heat. I soaked him down in cool water and put a fan on him and he recovered by the next morning. No more seizures, he's fine now. If it's really hot there you might want to cool down his pen and see if that doesn't help. It was about 102 when it happened. He was a week old at the time. I hope it get straightened out.
I see you live in's gotta be hotter'n hades there. I'm sure you've provided shade for the calf, right? Like ctlbaron said, mist him down. And, give him electrolytes...until you get him to the vet...then let the vet tell ya' what to do next.

It could be some sort of poisoning, it could be the heat, or a combination of both. If this were my calf, I believe I would take a multi-pronged approach - 1) Call the vet and talk to him/her about the problem. 2) Remove the calf from the milk replacer, substitute whole milk for a day or so and see if anything changes. The calf is 3 months old and is eating solid food - he could be weaned off the replacer, but I wouldn't do it now because it will add to the stress he is already experiencing. 3) If this calf does not already have shade, get him some immediately! I would also spray him down several times a day to make sure he is staying cool because over heating can lead to brain damage. I wouldn't expect heat to be as big a factor to a 3 month old calf as it would be to a week old calf, but why take the chance? 4) Go through the sheds/buildings where his food is stored to make sure there is nothing toxic that could get in his feed. Go through the hay to make sure there is nothing in it except grass or alfalfa. It does not sound like he has access to pasture, but if he does then I would check that, too. Check the pen he is in to see if he has been chewing on the panels, wood (if treated), etc to eliminate that as a possible source of poisoning. I hope this helps.
My advice first of all is to call the vet. However, from what your are describing it could possibly be an ear infection or at least fluid in his ear. Animals will tend to want to lay on the affected side, have trouble standing because their equilibrium is out of whack. Also the turning of the head when lifted and being up could be an indication as to the affected side. The jerky movement of the eyes is also an indicator of a possible infection.

If he is "paddling", moving his legs like he is trying to swim when he is lying down, it could be a strep infection. You need to call the vet ASAP.

We had a pig that had the same symptoms, we watered her from a hose and spoon fed her to keep her alive long enough for the antibiotics to work and get through the withdrawl time and she survived to go in our freezer. Vet said as long as she recovered she should be alright to eat. She was very tasty.

Also had a lamb with the same symptoms, but she developed a respiratory infection too and we couldn't save her.

It could be the heat too, hard to tell without a proper diagnosis from the vet. Good Luck with the little guy.
Is their any other animals penned with him ? What i'm getting at is , is it possable he could been "kicked" by another calf/cow etc.
One other thing it could be, the calf may have a hole in its heart. It's fairly common for cattle to have holes in their hearts and most go undetected. In severe cases calves can't supply their body with the blood they need as they grow. If this is the case your vet should be able to hear a swishy sound from the heart. If thats what it is there is nothing you can do.

I'd still take everyones advice on things to try because this is only a possibility. Call your vet.

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