Frostbite?

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TCRanch

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I've been watching one of my cows the past couple days because she has a noticeable droopy ear. Eyes clear, no snotty nose, no coughing, great appetite, no signs of pneumonia. Felt around yesterday to see if she has a burr stuck in the fur - nope. Not shaking her head & doesn't stink so doubt it's an ear infection. Took her temp this morning and it was 99.4 (keeping in mind the wind chill was 36).

With the epic snow & cold we had, do you think it's possible she has frostbite? Anyone else have something similar since the storm(s)? I certainly don't want to pump her full of antibiotics for no apparent reason (plus the hassle & subsequent drama of getting her to the barn & in the chute).
 

Silver

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Interesting. I have a cow that has developed one droopy ear the last few days. I don't know why. She had got on her back awhile back and I wondered if she bashed her head while thrashing around but then I realized she was on the other side.
But even if it was frostbite it wouldn't droop. The only time I've ever seen a cow get a frozen ear was when it was -60F for an extended period one time. Even then no droop to the ears, they just eventually ended up a little shorter.
 
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TCRanch

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@Silver, good to know it's probably not frostbite; definitely didn't get -60. Or, one day I'll notice the ear is significantly smaller;).

@kenny thomas, I don't know if cows can get them either. Stuck my finger in her ear & dug around a bit but they're so darn fluffy, I couldn't feel or see anything.
 
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TCRanch

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I took a couple this afternoon but it's kind of hard to tell. 1st pic, she's facing the sun with 35 mph wind gusts - but the droop is more prominent in that one. 2nd pic, she's just hanging & chewing her cud. IMG_20210228_145148128_HDR.jpgIMG_20210228_155521337_HDR.jpg
 

RDFF

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Can't tell much from a still photo, but I'd agree that the ear does look like it might have some kind of discharge going on, and on the photo, it looks like the left eye isn't quite matching the look of the right........... something I just thought of that I've never heard of in cattle, but can't imagine why it COULDN'T ever happen........ really mild stroke? I'm smiling about the suggestion as I write it, but I AM serious... it's "possible" I suppose. And it COULD have been brought on by the stress of the last couple of weeks potentially........... It occurred to me because my Mom is currently recovering from a stroke... and of course, that does affect "one side". Look at her face on the photo....... that ear is drooping, and that side of her face actually does seem to be a little out of balance with the other, including her mouth, and the "tilting of her head" slightly........... but that all could just be when the image was snapped too.

Like I said though... I've never heard of it in cattle... probably because any that had one ended up dead pretty quickly. And any that had just a very mild one probably ended up as hamburger for "poor performance", without a diagnosis. Just an interesting thought............ She looks like she's in great condition though!
 

Silver

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Can't tell much from a still photo, but I'd agree that the ear does look like it might have some kind of discharge going on, and on the photo, it looks like the left eye isn't quite matching the look of the right........... something I just thought of that I've never heard of in cattle, but can't imagine why it COULDN'T ever happen........ really mild stroke? I'm smiling about the suggestion as I write it, but I AM serious... it's "possible" I suppose. And it COULD have been brought on by the stress of the last couple of weeks potentially........... It occurred to me because my Mom is currently recovering from a stroke... and of course, that does affect "one side". Look at her face on the photo....... that ear is drooping, and that side of her face actually does seem to be a little out of balance with the other, including her mouth, and the "tilting of her head" slightly........... but that all could just be when the image was snapped too.

Like I said though... I've never heard of it in cattle... probably because any that had one ended up dead pretty quickly. And any that had just a very mild one probably ended up as hamburger for "poor performance", without a diagnosis. Just an interesting thought............ She looks like she's in great condition though!
The exact same thoughts went through my mind as well. And I also thought her face looked out of balance, especially the eye. I can't help but think it's related to her recent near death experience on her back. Never know, it could have been a mild stroke that caused her to be on her back in the first place?
 
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TCRanch

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I always figure if they are chewing their cud, they are doing ok, and nothing to worry about. Right or wrong I've always been relieved if I see them stretch or chewing their cud.
That's the thing! She's otherwise acting perfectly normal. But I see my cattle every day - multiple times during calving - and the droopy ear is new.

As Dun would say, benign neglect for now?
 

gcreekrch

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Cattle freeze ears here after a wet snow and then temperatures drop and a wind. If they are wet it doesn’t have to be real cold. More so in younger cattle but cows too.
 

Lee VanRoss

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I agree with Ky hills Other than that, have you noticed her shaking her head as if she were trying to dislodge pressure or a foreign object?
As long as she is eating OK and chewing her cud she will hopefully be fine.. Good Luck
 
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TCRanch

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I agree with Ky hills Other than that, have you noticed her shaking her head as if she were trying to dislodge pressure or a foreign object?
As long as she is eating OK and chewing her cud she will hopefully be fine.. Good Luck
No head shaking. I kept watching for that initially, thinking she had an ear infection. She's still just chewing her cud - with her droopy ear. She's a trooper and let me take her temp & dig around in her ear in the pasture, but a more thorough exam &/or antibiotics would require getting her to the barn with the chute.

Thanks for the good luck!
 

farmerjan

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If she lets you "dig around in her ear" then take a long q-tip.... the kind they use for crafts, and stick it in her ear a bit and see if you come up with and kind of crud or anything. But she doesn't look like she has any discharge like the one in silver's pic.
Yeah, benign neglect if all other signs are normal.
 

Buck Randall

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Looks like an injury to the facial nerve where it runs over the zygomatic arch (see no. 9 in the picture). Probably hit it on something. Strokes and heart attacks are exceptionally rare in cattle.
1614735323779.png
 
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TCRanch

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That's what she looks/acts like, @Buck Randall!! Close to calving, raging hormones, lot of fighting.

Back to benign neglect, because I don't suppose there's anything I can do for her. Other than Round 2 with a long Q-tip, which I can do to rule out any debris in her ear.
 

JKCattle

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Could possibly be a latent IBR infection in the trigeminal nerve. That’s getting down in the weeds, but I have seen it. It happens around the time of a serious stress. Benign neglect is only treatment
 
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Seriously???!!! Same thing with one of my bulls. Temp is normal, no symptoms whatsoever of, well, anything. Except fighting. Daily. Side note: he's the one that had the enormous hematoma 6 months ago on the other side of his head. Still looks a little big in the pic, but party because of the angle.

IMG_20210316_154346517.jpg
 

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