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bottle calves and drinking water

A

Anonymous

Guest
I am new to raising bottle calves. I have had some for a month now and they seem to be growing well, eating grain and hay, but I have never seen them drink their fresh water. I change it often but it never has traces of anyone drinking it. I tried to show them it was there by dipping their noses in it.They weren't impressed. Will they learn to drink eventually without a mom, will they not drink water while on the bottle? They see the older cows drinking, but don't seem interested?

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A

Anonymous

Guest
When they want/need it they'll drink. If it has a very strong chlorine smell that may be putting them off a bit, you could disolve a little orange cool-aid in it, but basically they will get around to it in due time

dunmovin farms

> I am new to raising bottle calves.
> I have had some for a month now
> and they seem to be growing well,
> eating grain and hay, but I have
> never seen them drink their fresh
> water. I change it often but it
> never has traces of anyone
> drinking it. I tried to show them
> it was there by dipping their
> noses in it.They weren't
> impressed. Will they learn to
> drink eventually without a mom,
> will they not drink water while on
> the bottle? They see the older
> cows drinking, but don't seem
> interested?
 
A

Anonymous

Guest
dunmovin farms Thanks so much, I guess I was looking for something to worry about. We have no idea how to wean them, and I was thinking I could never wean them if they didn't learn how to drink water. Could you tell me 'when' and 'how' to go about weaning them someday. I am sure they would be happy to never be weaned, they are quite fond of the milk. One is a beautiful white faced semintel heifer, the other is a gangly tall boy holstein who thinks I AM his mommy.

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A

Anonymous

Guest
There are almost as many opinions on how ans when to wean as there are people raising bottle calves. Most people wean at 8 to 10 weeks if the calf is eating at least 2 lbs of good calf starter grain a day. We used to keep them on longer only because we had a surplus of milk, if you're feeding milk replacer, one with the primary ingredients derived from milk and not soy, 8 to 10 weeks will work fine. If you haven't cut/banded/whatever the young gentleman makes plans to do so. Make sure they are vaccinated for whatever your local large animal vet recommends, also worm them. If they aren't polled, unless you are going to use them as oxen make plans for dehorning/disbudding depending on their age. I'm sure there is more, but I can't think of ot right now

dunmovin farms

> dunmovin farms Thanks so much, I
> guess I was looking for something
> to worry about. We have no idea
> how to wean them, and I was
> thinking I could never wean them
> if they didn't learn how to drink
> water. Could you tell me 'when'
> and 'how' to go about weaning them
> someday. I am sure they would be
> happy to never be weaned, they are
> quite fond of the milk. One is a
> beautiful white faced semintel
> heifer, the other is a gangly tall
> boy holstein who thinks I AM his
> mommy.
 
A

Anonymous

Guest
Cut out the morning bottle, give full bottle at night, (it seems to settle them down for the night) after about a week, just cut that one out also. I know people think it's cute, but don't let them suck you fingers aftyer the bottle stops..

dunmovin farms

> Should I gradually reduce the milk
> or go cold turkey?
 
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