"foundered" cow

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Anonymous

I need some advice. I don't know a whole lot about cows and their ailments so I'd appreciate any help provided. My problem: Tuesday night, I found one of our heifers (about 600 lbs. -10 mths. old) down and unable to get up. She has been latched up in a lot so as to keep her away from the bull until she gets older. She has been given cotten seeds, hay, and water. We tried to get her up but couldn't. The best we could do was to roll her to the other side. I then messaged her legs and belly thinking that her circulation may be gone. Finally, we got her to kind of rest upright with her legs folded under her instead of being on her side with her legs straight out. We called a vet. He told me to give her a shot of Baytril incase there was some bacterial problems that may get started because of her stressed condition. He also said to give her 100 cc. of milk of magnesia. In the morning, she still wasn't up. He then said to feed her some all-grain and give her fresh water from the hydrant - not the creek. We did. Thurs. morning, she still wasn't able to get up so we rigged up a sling. By the afternoon, she had wallered so, that she was almost standing on her head. We took her down from the sling. She still can't get up but continues to show interest in eating the all-grain and hay. She now has a knot in her stomach. A neighbor said we may as well shoot her, but my old father-in-law once told me, as long as an animal will eat, there's a chance. He's no longer living so I can't go to him for advice. Can anyone out there offer any? Thanks for your time. I'll be watching for a response.

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Anonymous

Ok, depending on where you're living, selenium deficiency could be a problem. It will drop the animals and they'll keep eating until they die. Other mineral deficiencies ie phosphorus also come to mind. My personal view is that before you shoot the animal, you actually force the vet to come out and do a physical exam and possibly take some blood for diagnostics. She could have a broken pelvis, broken back, mineral problem...certain diseases will do this as well but they tend not to eat. (Actually my first thought was to shoot the vet, but they are a collegue so I backed off that thought....)

Good Luck V
 
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Anonymous

> Ok, depending on where you're
> living, selenium deficiency could
> be a problem. It will drop the
> animals and they'll keep eating
> until they die. Other mineral
> deficiencies ie phosphorus also
> come to mind. My personal view is
> that before you shoot the animal,
> you actually force the vet to come
> out and do a physical exam and
> possibly take some blood for
> diagnostics. She could have a
> broken pelvis, broken back,
> mineral problem...certain diseases
> will do this as well but they tend
> not to eat. (Actually my first
> thought was to shoot the vet, but
> they are a collegue so I backed
> off that thought....)

> Good Luck V Thanks for the response. The heifer is still down but continues to eat. She looks to be alert, has a lot of strenght in her back legs, and appears to have nothing broken. She just can't stand up. I'll get some minerals for her first thing in the morning and mix it with her feed. I am assuming that the minerals will be a mixture of those that a cow would need and have the selenium and phosphorus you mentioned in the mix. Does it matter how much I give her a day? Will it give me an amount on the bag? Oh, we live in North Louisiana if that is of any help. We have her kind of laying "up" with her legs up under her. We have some square bales of hay on each side to kind of support her and encourage her to maintain this position. Any more hints from those who know what they are doing would be greatly appreciated as I know I have much to learn. Thanks again.

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Anonymous

She should be rolled every 4 hours or so as well. Ensure she's clean and dry also. Selenium deficiency is regional and is treated by INJECTION. Prevention is oral (ie minerals) Phosphorus is also treated by injection, but you want to be sure this is the problem with either one. Personally, I'm still recommending a vet check and bloodwork. I can get phosphorus levels back in about 1 hour (lab equiptment in office) and selenium within 1-2days max. (they usually do an enzyme test here called glutathion peroxidase since every one is considered deficient) but there is a direct selenium test.
 

cowkeeper

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Vicki the Vet, a friend of mine has a cow who has some "clicking" when she moves, seems sore in the back end and cant lift back feet properly. Could it be broken pelvis and could it heal in a six-year-old animal, or a mineral problem? Just happened this week. Thanks.
 

Jeanne - Simme Valley

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V the V - good to hear from you. Hope all is well with you.
I was thinking the same:
(Actually my first thought was to shoot the vet, but they are a collegue so I backed off that thought....)
As Vicki has said, there are too many possibilities to give you much advice - you need tests run.
It could be as simple as malnutrition - cattle can starve to death knee deep in hay, if the hay doesn't have any nutritional value. Maybe the vet has seen your operation and knows they need more feed that's why he suggested the grain.
I'm not trying to insult you, it's just that some "newbies" don't realize that some hay just won't keep an animal alive. Although, 600# at 10 months isn't really a bad weight, but you may not be good at judging weight. What breed of animal, and can you see the backbone?
 

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