Had to cull the heifer.

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dimka1980

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Hi guys, I wanted to ask the question about the meat of cull heifer of hereford breed. So, I had to cull the downed heifer, she was very late in pregnancy maybe 2-3 weeks from calving. I could not get it up and made a decision to cull it. Now, when inspecting the meat, I see lots of jelo-like slime or whatever it might be, it makes the meat very slick, and also some fluids seems like in the meat. Can you let me know and share what it might me, and how to avoid it in the future? Thanks
 

Lucky_P

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It's either... 1. Serous atrophy of fat - she'd exhausted all her body fat stores, and you end up with that yellow, jello-like consistency tissue in what should be fat deposits.
or, 2. Edema just from her being down - impaired circulation and pressure necrosis.
How to avoid it in the future? 1) Supply sufficient energy in the ration to prevent them having to catabolize body fat/muscle stores and 'going down' in the first place; or, 2) re-think butchering downer animals.
 
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dimka1980

dimka1980

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Thanks for your reply. Yeah, I don't know all the nuances, and learning. I just don't want to loose the animal and don't anything. I posted a quick link to video and wanted to know what do you think about the condition of the animals. Video is in other thread
 

moses388

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Just wondering... Did you save the baby calf? Should have been a viable pregnancy being 2-3 weeks from the calving due date.
 

moses388

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With Veterinary assistance you would induce labor or perform a cesarean section.
 

Ky hills

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Good to see a field of Herefords. From what I could tell even though the video was moving pretty fast to really analyze many of the animals. I did notice the top lines on the first ones were very visible, ideally those backs would be pretty well flat. Herefords tend to be pretty wooly in winter so with those being that pronounced I would say it’s a condition issue. We feed lower quality hay as it’s what we can get, and I supplement with some feed daily as well in the winter months. I also keep out a good mineral year round. We like to keep our heifers separate from the cows through that first calving and until they get on decent pasture in the spring after the calves are born. Heifers are growing themselves and the calf inside, and just need a little extra and then if they are running with cows they tend to get pushed out of whatever hay or feed is available. As far as a calf being saved from a situation like the one described, if it is a body condition issue, then very likely the calf has been affected too, and would not likely survive either. If it did it would probably be very weak.
 

Stocker Steve

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Vets are happy to cut a calf out, if you do not want to do it.

Downer animals are not great burger producers. Been there. Your local butcher has a lot of experience, and can help you make a good decision.
 

SBMF 2015

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With Veterinary assistance you would induce labor or perform a cesarean section.
If you have a really good butcher they can do a C-section pretty quick. Shoot, C-section, then cut their throat. Live calf, dead hfr, no drug hold. Our old butcher was pure magic with a knife. I guess fifty years of butchering will have that effect.
 

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