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Calves born dead?

outdoorjohn

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I have three cows that have had calves born dead in one month. The calves appear to be full term and the cows appear healthy, not thin at all. Any ideas on what is causing this?
 

outdoorjohn

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I have never used a fetal Vac. Should i be?

I have not talked to a vet yet. I want to carry the cows to him this weekend but I didnt know if he would test them or just vaccinate and hope we get it.
 

outdoorjohn

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Thanks! I hope there isnt anymore but if there are I will find out. I plan to start vaccinating right away.

I have purchased several cows this year from stockyards and brought them into the herd. If this is a disease, I figure that is where it came from.
 

rockridgecattle

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not to upset you further but you do know that vaccinating them now will probably do nothing for this years calf crop. So do not expect miraculous results with the rest of the unborn calf crop.
It takes near three weeks to start building antibodies, then you need boosters and yet still, in concern to the unborn calf, if it is disease, the damage is done already.

If you are worried that it is disease, talk to your vet about the best course of action for the here and now, and then talk about the best time to vaccinate the herd, and then talk about BVD testing the whole herd and getting rid of the infected. Include the bulls in this testing.
We pre breed vaccinate with a fetal protection vaccine 2-3 weeks prior to bull turn out.
 

hillsdown

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dun":1y9cii49 said:
This will help you figure out if they are born dead or die at birth
http://cattletoday.com/forum/viewtopic. ... 7&p=433533

Thanks for the link Dun. I was looking for this the other day as a neighbor had a calf born dead and was not sure if it died during labor or after it was delivered..

The one question I will ask John is ; are you there when they calve, and how bad is dystocia with your herd ??
 

Keren

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The procedure I was always taught was:

1. Open the calf/lamb/kid/foal check lungs. If they are a dark colour similar to the liver, the animal has not breathed and was most likely born dead. If they are a light pink the animal has breathed. If in doubt cut a piece and put it in water. The second will float. The first will not.

2. If the animal has breathed, next look at feet to get an indication of whether it has gotten to its feet. If it has walked around, the hoof caps will be off, but if it has been born and died before getting to its feet, the hoof caps should still be present. Depending on the breed and your own herd, you can tell how long it lived for - my kids are usually on their feet within half an hour.

3. If the animal breathed, and walked around, next look at the stomach to tell whether the animal suckled. Look for the presence of milk in the abomasum. You might have an animal that was born alive and got to its feet but didnt get a feed - either from abandonment of otherwise.

Also a new one I learned the other day from an old vet - if you have an animal stillborn, touch its eyes. If they are kinda squishy like the eyes of a live animal, then the baby died within the last two hours. If they are hard, the baby was dead longer than two hours. So you can hypothesize whether the baby was already dead (infection, congenital defect etc) or whether it died in the birth canal due to birthing complications (dystocia, weak umbilical, breech birth etc)
 

Caustic Burno

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This can be a real storm, your cows are fast becoming a welfare herd as they are not returning to the operation.
You have a management problem in your herd, need to post a calf at the Vet's or college like TAMU.
There is a pile of things to cause these issue's from feed to diesease, you need help that is not obtainable from a chat board.
 

mnmtranching

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The calves being full term is puzzling? Don't diseases cause aborts earlier in the pregnancy?
I think this case might take some Lab assistance.
 

outdoorjohn

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The cattle have no trouble calving. I have not seen the actual birthing but everything appeared normal except for a dead calf. I usually find the calves within 3-5 hours after birth. Just guessing.

hillsdown":h41kcm5h said:
dun":h41kcm5h said:
This will help you figure out if they are born dead or die at birth
viewtopic.php?f=19&t=39387&p=433533

Thanks for the link Dun. I was looking for this the other day as a neighbor had a calf born dead and was not sure if it died during labor or after it was delivered..

The one question I will ask John is ; are you there when they calve, and how bad is dystocia with your herd ??
 

Workinonit Farm

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Caustic Burno":3s6q44cm said:
There is a pile of things to cause these issue's from feed to diesease, you need help that is not obtainable from a chat board.


by mnmtranching on Tue Mar 10, 2009 7:42 am

I think this case might take some Lab assistance.


:nod: :nod: :nod:
Probably too late with the last dead one, but the next dead one should be posted/necropsied to get answers to what is going on. I have to admit, one dead one I would probably not 'panic' over, but 3? If they were mine, #3 would have been tested for anything and everything.

Katherine
 

outdoorjohn

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Should I get the Mama cows test or the dead calves?


Workinonit Farm":1m0zh3ln said:
Caustic Burno":1m0zh3ln said:
There is a pile of things to cause these issue's from feed to diesease, you need help that is not obtainable from a chat board.


by mnmtranching on Tue Mar 10, 2009 7:42 am

I think this case might take some Lab assistance.


:nod: :nod: :nod:
Probably too late with the last dead one, but the next dead one should be posted/necropsied to get answers to what is going on. I have to admit, one dead one I would probably not 'panic' over, but 3? If they were mine, #3 would have been tested for anything and everything.

Katherine
 

hillsdown

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John the first thing you need to do is get a hold of your vet and make a plan. If you do not have one you need to find one asap ...

Good luck and keep us posted; but I am thinking that you are having more problems with delivery than you think especially since you have yet to see one go into labor and actually watch them give birth..
 

angie1

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outdoorjohn":iindpx3r said:
Should I get the Mama cows test or the dead calves?
Just a calf for starters ~ you can move forward from there if you cannot find the answer, but you can expect to. When you find the next dead calf, put it somewhere cold but not freezing ~ if you freeze it you will ruin it. Get it to the vet as soon as possible. You will read posts on here about what nonsense and waste of money vet assistance is ~ but one post will pay for the calves you are losing.

Good Luck, and let us know what you find out.
 

msscamp

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mnmtranching":1mv5jb4o said:
The calves being full term is puzzling? Don't diseases cause aborts earlier in the pregnancy?

Some do, some don't. Q Fever causes late term abortions, as well as weak/dead calves or kids.


As a sidenote to outdoorjohn - if you have more dead calves, make sure you take the placenta to the vet along with the calf. Some diseases can be detected via testing the calf, but some can only be detected through testing the placenta. Cover all your bases, and good luck!
 

outdoorjohn

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Just an update here from the weekend and another question. I had several calves born this weekend and all were fine. I did talk to my vet and we plan on vaccinating starting this next weekend. He says I sould vaccinate one round asap and wait 6 weeks and do it again. He is assuming this is lepto but will vaccinate for several things.

Here is my question....Should I sell my bull immediatly? If so is it safe to bring in another Vaccinated bull into the herd right now? I don't want to not have a bull here in he beginning/middle of breeding season. The reason I ask this is because I was told the bull is a transporter of the disease. What do yall think?
 

grannysoo

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Caustic Burno":12vlhagm said:
This can be a real storm, your cows are fast becoming a welfare herd as they are not returning to the operation.
You have a management problem in your herd, need to post a calf at the Vet's or college like TAMU.
There is a pile of things to cause these issue's from feed to diesease, you need help that is not obtainable from a chat board.

I would have been jumping up and down by the time the 2nd one had been "born dead". It's time to get some professional assistance.

Good call CB.
 
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