How to know if your mama cow is milking calf good

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This is our very first calf and we have no history on mama cow, we got her at such a good price were' now a bit suspicious that something isn't going to work right w/her(wont milk, not a good mother etc).
Calf born Tues in super mild weather and things seemed to look ok when I got there within 1hr of birth.
Thing is calf is 65mi away at my moms place, my mother whose 73 doesn't think the cows bag has filled up enough to give the baby adequate milk. I told mom i had seen baby nurse after born and maybe the baby had just nursed and that every animals bags are diff. But my mom is driving us crazy w/worry and constant calls(bless her :heart: ) so were going to try to go load both fri (will see how that goes couldnt' load mama before she gave birth so this outta be fun). We dont' have catch pen built yet so its a trailer and cattle panels kind of cluster.. .UGH! Shes bucket trained but doesn't like putting back feet in trailer.

Anyway "Whats a good way to tell all is well on the milking dept"? if the baby has milk around its mouth? If not milking good baby may be gone by the time we get there friday.
Wasnt able to tell if boy/girl yet....
Thanks in advance all really appreciate all your feedback.
 

Rafter S

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I can't tell from the picture, but look at the calf's flank (the space between the ribs and hip). If it looks full then the calf is doing fine. If it looks sunk in or hollow then it may not be getting enough milk. You can also tell by the calf's behavior, but it's a little more difficult. If it nurses for a while and then goes and lays down or runs around playing it's probably okay. When nursing if it's constantly going from one teat to the other and still acting hungry then the cow may not have enough milk. It's probably okay. Very few cows don't have enough milk for a calf, but it does happen.
 
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Huntet02
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Rafter S
THank you for your reply so calf born last tues and today is sunday so not a full week old yet so here's my latest: I was ready to pull heifer calf home and bottle fed her without her mamma yest after mamma left her hidden in pasture for many hrs and calf couldn't even walk after I awakened her. Since we cannot, after 3 weekends of trying, get mama loaded in trailer, after me and hubby agreeing i was just gonna grab calf put in my car and head home, however my mom chewed me out telling me that calf runs around playing every morning and i was a fool, so i stayed the night and decided to check it out.
I had decided to pull her home after spending many hrs sitting 5 ft away watching baby nurse, she goes from teat to teat, not getting much of anything, her flanks are sunken, no visible milk residue on cows teats, nor calfs mouth AND cows bag looks like nothing much is really there--all that said i however do digress and believe 1 teat must be giving her a tiny amount after seeing quite a show this am.
At 7:30 i watched lil calf head butting other calf whose 3mos older, running like the wind back and forth zipping around: i was thrilled. This is our first calf born to us so we know little on how things are supposed to be BUT if a calf was starving i don't think it could be running like this right? :shock:

I know many ranchers would laugh at us caring on so much for 1 little baby but this heifer is worth a lot of $ and 4H shows for us....Yours thoughts??
 

kucala5

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It sounds like the calf is OK. I tend to micromanage so I understand your concern. Good luck to you, keep us posted. You can try supplementing with a bottle if you think the calf is still hungry after nursing.
 

Rafter S

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I agree with kucala. If the calf is running around and playing it's almost certainly doing okay. If you're worried about the quantity of milk it's getting you might consider additional feeding, but I certainly wouldn't take it away from it's mother.
 

Waterway65

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Is the calf spend to much time trying to nurse or does it nurse and go lay down? Looks like a good enough cow from the pics. Breeders of all breeds have selected for sound snug udders like she appears to have.
 

BRYANT

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just my :2cents: I bet the calf is fine just needs to be left along. could give the cow some feed to help her along.
Huntet02":107hhvrm said:
after mamma left her hidden in pasture for many hrs and calf couldn't even walk after I awakened her.
normal, cow doing what cows do.
 

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