calf will not eat calf starter

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strick75

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I need help. I have a calf that was born on Aug. 13th, 2008. She drank from her
mom only a couple of days and then we don't know what happened but she was found almost dead. I force feed her a few days until she finally started drinking.
She now drinks about 3 quarts twice a day. My problem is that she will not have anything to do with the calf starter. She does nibble on grass. I have tried mixing the calf starter with milk in a pan but she does not want it.Is it possible to mix the
food in a bottle and cut the nipple larger? I have never raised a calf in my life.
We want to take her back to the pasture but we are not sure if she is strong enough. Any help would be appreciated.

Sheila
 

randiliana

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strick75":2o6r0p5x said:
I need help. I have a calf that was born on Aug. 13th, 2008. She drank from her
mom only a couple of days and then we don't know what happened but she was found almost dead. I force feed her a few days until she finally started drinking.
She now drinks about 3 quarts twice a day. My problem is that she will not have anything to do with the calf starter. She does nibble on grass. I have tried mixing the calf starter with milk in a pan but she does not want it.Is it possible to mix the
food in a bottle and cut the nipple larger? I have never raised a calf in my life.
We want to take her back to the pasture but we are not sure if she is strong enough. Any help would be appreciated.

Sheila

To get her on calf starter, after you bottle feed her, put a handful in her mouth. She should almost suck it out of your hand. After a few days she should start nibbling it on her own.

You could put her back out in the pasture, but you will need to continue feeding her. And giving her calf starter if you want her to keep growing. A month old is pretty young to just kick her out. They are just developing their rumen at this time and cannot really digest grass and hay well enough to get much food value out of it.
 

shorty

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I usually take a little feed in my hand and put it in their mouth and after a few days they will eat it out of the bucket , about a month ago I had a heifer born whose mom had problems and I had to start bottle feeding her , a few years ago someone gave me a grain bottle for calves , I had never tried it before but I hung it on her gate and she took to it right away , the nipple is made that when they bite on it the grain comes out , it saves time fooling around with the calf. I took it away the other day and she eats out of bucket now . The name on the bottles says Braden Industries , Sulphur Springs Texas. I have 3 holstien bull calves with her but those I got going by hand . The bottle does work but I don't know what they cost .
 

buckwheat

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I'll tell you what I've seen work, and it's easy. Get a few apples and slice them in small pieces and when feeding the bottle, put a small piece in the calf's mouth, it will seem to suck on it, and try to chew. It will want the apple pieces and after a few days of this put a few pieces in a bucket with pellets and the calf will try to get the apple pieces out of the bucket, next thing it's eating the pellets. Apples are cheap, not much time. Good luck.

Buckwheat
 
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strick75

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Thanks for the ideas. I had been thinking about trying apples but I was not sure if it would hurt her or not.
I will get some tomorrow & try this.
 

larryshoat

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She just needs more time . She will start to eat more soon, that's enough milk that she will grow good if you just let her come up on feed . When she eats about 2 lbs a day you can cut out 1 of the milk feedings and when she is eating 4 pounds a day you can wean her . I like to take the milk away gradually, kind of tease them along and then stop the milk .

Larry
 
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strick75

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Thanks so much Larry, I never thought that saying a baby calf would change my life so much.
We have her at the pasture now & I go twice a day to feed her. I also go 2 or 3 more times to check on her. Maybe she will learn from the other calves.

Sheila
 

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