How do I make the heifer let her calf nurse?

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Anonymous

I'm sure this has been asked before but I couldn't find it in the search page. I have a first time heifer that gave birth two days ago, she calved earlier than I thought she would and I didn't find the calf till today, when I checked cattle this morning I could hear it bawling and was running to different cows and other calves trying to suck. I tagged it and checked it and its mother never even paid attention, so I got both of them in the lot and seen that when it would try to nurse she would kick and butt it. My question is how do I make her be a mother and let it nurse? Will mother nature ever kick in and should I keep her around to try again next year? Also, I can't understand why it acted so healthy, would the other cows let it nurse? I was told angus make good mothers and this is my first heifer to calve out of 14 more I hope they all are not like this or I'm selling out and buying Alpaches, NOT!
 
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Anonymous

You may have to do this a couple of times till the calve gets the smell of the cow from her milk, but here is what we have done. Restrain the cow, a chute is ok but ussually restricts the ability of the calf to reach the tests, a head catch only is better, best is just a rope around her neck and snubbed to a tree or something solid fairly close to a fence so she can't waltz around and get away from the calf. Loop a rope around the cow as close to the hooks as possible and just in front of the udder, snug it up TIGHT. It's the same principle as dairies use on some kickers. Shove the calf under the cow and strip a few squirts from each quarter on it's nose around the mouth. If the little booger wants to nurse it will ussually catch on real quick. While you have the cow restrained check her udder and insure she doesn't have mastitis or some other problem. Frequently heifers will have so much milk and her udder will be very tender, when the calf tries to nurse, it hurts and she will kick or push it away. With our cows in 40 plus years we've had to do this exactly once. I've seen it in a number of other herds over the years but it isn't common. Sometimes if a calf is real eager and there is another cow in milk it will be able to sneak a meal. I'm surprised that it;s still alive and active itf it hadn't gotten something to eat in two days. If she still won't claim it and keeps acting agressive towards it, bottle feed the calf and have the cow grow wheels. There's no sense in feeding a freeloader for another year only to find out she'll do it again. If the maternal thing hasn't kicked in after a couple days of having the calf nurse it probably never will. Oh yah, after the calf has nursed some from each quarter and relieved some of the pressure, slack the flank rope a little and see how she reacts. The heifer we did it with just stood there and let the calf nurse. Within maybe ten minutes we had the flank rope off and turned her loose. No more problems. But it depends on how the cow behaves.

dun

> I'm sure this has been asked
> before but I couldn't find it in
> the search page. I have a first
> time heifer that gave birth two
> days ago, she calved earlier than
> I thought she would and I didn't
> find the calf till today, when I
> checked cattle this morning I
> could hear it bawling and was
> running to different cows and
> other calves trying to suck. I
> tagged it and checked it and its
> mother never even paid attention,
> so I got both of them in the lot
> and seen that when it would try to
> nurse she would kick and butt it.
> My question is how do I make her
> be a mother and let it nurse? Will
> mother nature ever kick in and
> should I keep her around to try
> again next year? Also, I can't
> understand why it acted so
> healthy, would the other cows let
> it nurse? I was told angus make
> good mothers and this is my first
> heifer to calve out of 14 more I
> hope they all are not like this or
> I'm selling out and buying
> Alpaches, NOT!
 
OP
A

Anonymous

> You may have to do this a couple
> of times till the calve gets the
> smell of the cow from her milk,
> but here is what we have done.
> Restrain the cow, a chute is ok
> but ussually restricts the ability
> of the calf to reach the tests, a
> head catch only is better, best is
> just a rope around her neck and
> snubbed to a tree or something
> solid fairly close to a fence so
> she can't waltz around and get
> away from the calf. Loop a rope
> around the cow as close to the
> hooks as possible and just in
> front of the udder, snug it up
> TIGHT. It's the same principle as
> dairies use on some kickers. Shove
> the calf under the cow and strip a
> few squirts from each quarter on
> it's nose around the mouth. If the
> little booger wants to nurse it
> will ussually catch on real quick.
> While you have the cow restrained
> check her udder and insure she
> doesn't have mastitis or some
> other problem. Frequently heifers
> will have so much milk and her
> udder will be very tender, when
> the calf tries to nurse, it hurts
> and she will kick or push it away.
> With our cows in 40 plus years
> we've had to do this exactly once.
> I've seen it in a number of other
> herds over the years but it isn't
> common. Sometimes if a calf is
> real eager and there is another
> cow in milk it will be able to
> sneak a meal. I'm surprised that
> it;s still alive and active itf it
> hadn't gotten something to eat in
> two days. If she still won't claim
> it and keeps acting agressive
> towards it, bottle feed the calf
> and have the cow grow wheels.
> There's no sense in feeding a
> freeloader for another year only
> to find out she'll do it again. If
> the maternal thing hasn't kicked
> in after a couple days of having
> the calf nurse it probably never
> will. Oh yah, after the calf has
> nursed some from each quarter and
> relieved some of the pressure,
> slack the flank rope a little and
> see how she reacts. The heifer we
> did it with just stood there and
> let the calf nurse. Within maybe
> ten minutes we had the flank rope
> off and turned her loose. No more
> problems. But it depends on how
> the cow behaves.

> dun

Some one wrote here before, and I tried it and it worked, that after you squirt some of the milk on the calf's nose and mouth to take the calf around and let the mother smell of its nose and mouth, thus letting her know it is her calf.

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Anonymous

Thanks for the info, this method has been working good so far. I am now able to use only the rope around the hooks with nothing around the head. When I turn her out of the chute she will jump a few yards then she will stand and let the calf nurse. But when I take the rope off she will go rite back to kicking it. She also seems to care less about the calf, I have restrained the calf to make it bawl and she doesnt seem to care, she wont even talk to it like a mother cow usually does. So I am able to get the calf nursed but how do I make a mother out of the cow? And when should I give up and start bottle feeding the calf? I noticed that it seems to bother her when the calf butts her bag. I have been checking her bag every day since last Sat. and the bag was really hard and it seems to get a little softer and loose everyday. About how long does it take for the tenderness go away? I do appriciate all responses.
 
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Anonymous

I my opinion the cow either has very severe edema or mastitis. Since the cow hasn't taken to the calf yet and you're spending as much time getting the cow to let it urse you'ld be just as well off to bottle feed the calf. If you haven't given the cow aythig that has a withdrawl period I'ld put wheels under her ad sell her as a killer.

dun

> Thanks for the info, this method
> has been working good so far. I am
> now able to use only the rope
> around the hooks with nothing
> around the head. When I turn her
> out of the chute she will jump a
> few yards then she will stand and
> let the calf nurse. But when I
> take the rope off she will go rite
> back to kicking it. She also seems
> to care less about the calf, I
> have restrained the calf to make
> it bawl and she doesnt seem to
> care, she wont even talk to it
> like a mother cow usually does. So
> I am able to get the calf nursed
> but how do I make a mother out of
> the cow? And when should I give up
> and start bottle feeding the calf?
> I noticed that it seems to bother
> her when the calf butts her bag. I
> have been checking her bag every
> day since last Sat. and the bag
> was really hard and it seems to
> get a little softer and loose
> everyday. About how long does it
> take for the tenderness go away? I
> do appriciate all responses.
 
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A

Anonymous

Dun, Thanks, I agree I went and bought milk replacer today. I do have another question if you dont mind, How long should I bottle feed this calf? And how soon can he start eating feed? It's a shame that I have a high bred angus cow that looks awsome and isn't a good mother. Anybody out there want to give me my $1000 back for her. Just kidding!

1 bottle nipple $1.99

1 bottle $4.99

1 bag of milk replacer $21.95

1 Goodlooking Angus cow that has

no trouble calving, has a calf

every year and that isn't CRAZY!

PRICELESS!!!
 
OP
A

Anonymous

Depends on how you ant to manage the calf. When we've had to supplement a calf we left it with the herd if possible and bottle fed it three times a day and set up an area so it could get grain by itself. I would question only 21.95 for milk replacer. You are going to need at least 50 lbs of high quality milk/milk by-product based milk replacer. The calf should be eating some grass or hasy aand grain by the time it;s a week to two weeks old. The reason to leave it with the herd is so it learns from the rest of the calves or from the cows. You may also be pleasently surprised that the little guy will become a sneaky snacker and get a little milk from the other cows. We picked up a lovely little Shorthorn orphan calf a couple of years ago and kept it in a pen by the house. When it was a week old we started feeding it a bottle and grain in her pen. When she finsihed most of her grain we put a halter on her and took her out and turned her loose with the cows. In the evening we went out and got her, brought her back to her pen and fed her a bottle and grain again and left fresh hay. She really turned out great except she became a milk snatcher. Even as a yearling she would nurse from the cows that had just calved. End3ed up selling her because we never could break her of it. They turned her out with a bunch of steers and raised her that way. She's bre now and due to calf in about 4 months, but even with cows that are with her that have calved she has never nursed. Back to the originwasl question. Feed it at least 8 weeks or at least one 50 lb sack of milk replacer. By then it should be well into pasture and grain.

dun

> Dun, Thanks, I agree I went and
> bought milk replacer today. I do
> have another question if you dont
> mind, How long should I bottle
> feed this calf? And how soon can
> he start eating feed? It's a shame
> that I have a high bred angus cow
> that looks awsome and isn't a good
> mother. Anybody out there want to
> give me my $1000 back for her.
> Just kidding!

> 1 bottle nipple $1.99

> 1 bottle $4.99

> 1 bag of milk replacer $21.95

> 1 Goodlooking Angus cow that has

> no trouble calving, has a calf

> every year and that isn't CRAZY!

> PRICELESS!!!
 
OP
A

Anonymous

I am using nurse trate mpf calf milk replacer from ADM Alliance Nutrition. $21.95 for 25lbs. Ever herd of it, is it a good one. If not what would you recomend? After the 8 weeks or 50 lbs you said pasture and grain, so I can turn him out with the rest and creep him? If so this would work great, I would rather let him grow with the other calves and sell in 6 mos. insted of taking $150 right now. Thanks for the help Dun.
 
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Anonymous

He needs the pasture or hay now, also the grain. Normally you wean them from the bottle when they are eating 2 lbs a day of "High Quality" calf starter grain. Never heard of that particular replacer, but there are hundreds of good ones out there. Look at the label of ingredients. It has to be some form of milk or milk by-product, not soy based. This time of year a minimum of 20% fat, 22% is better. He needs the milk replacer, but to get his guts working properly he needs access to clean water, fresh grain and after a week or so you can introduce a good quality hay. Or let him nibble around on the pasture/hay with the rest of the calves but give him his bottle and grain seperate.

dun

> I am using nurse trate mpf calf
> milk replacer from ADM Alliance
> Nutrition. $21.95 for 25lbs. Ever
> herd of it, is it a good one. If
> not what would you recomend? After
> the 8 weeks or 50 lbs you said
> pasture and grain, so I can turn
> him out with the rest and creep
> him? If so this would work great,
> I would rather let him grow with
> the other calves and sell in 6
> mos. insted of taking $150 right
> now. Thanks for the help Dun.
 
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A

Anonymous

How much hay and grain should he be eating right now at 1 1/2 weeks old? And what kind of feed? Also what do you think about implanting and how soon it should be done? Sorry about all the questions, its nice to talk to someone who knows stuff.
 
OP
A

Anonymous

He will just nibble a little at hay, but the important thing is the calf starter grain. He won't eat much but if you poke some in his mouth after his bottle and leave a small amount available in a clean container he will(should) start eating it fairly well. Now I would let him eat as much grain as he wants, follow the directions on the bag for the replacer, and there may be directions on the bag of calf starter grain also. You don;t want him filling up on hay, if he's hungry, give him grain. It's hard to be specific when you can't see the calf and how he acts and how growthy he is etc. Ah, implants. We don't do it until they get shipped off to the backgrounder and then we use Ralgro. For the one we keep as a gomer and to eat ourselves he never gets implanted. I've seen studies that indicate a possible degradation of the marbleing of implanted steers. Don't know for sure, but just never have been able to get fully behind the process. It isn't about hormones or synthetics or anything else. We never have and don;t plan to start. I know there will be those that will squak and say we're giving up weaning/yearling weights but to grow more they have to eat more. Our pastures with the drought have been so marginal I just don;t see the point. But that's strictly a personal thing.

dun

> How much hay and grain should he
> be eating right now at 1 1/2 weeks
> old? And what kind of feed? Also
> what do you think about implanting
> and how soon it should be done?
> Sorry about all the questions, its
> nice to talk to someone who knows
> stuff.
 
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