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Newbie Here! Question about Heifer calving ? moaning

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ginnkam

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I have a almost three year old hereford cross heifer bred to an easy calving angus hereford cross bull, she was due to calve on April 27, and for the last two days she will lie down and moan and grown, she seems very uncomfortable. She is very swollen on the back end, her udder is reasonably full, and she appears to have dropped (*there is a distinct hollowing around her hip bones (like she lost weight), and her tail is very distinct.) When she swishes her tail she is so loose that it actually jiggles and opens up. I am sorry if I am being too vivid (but this will be my first calf since we started cattle farming). When she lies down she seems to be straining, you can actually see the opening about 5 inches long and 1 inch open in width. There is no discharge that I can see. I guess my main concern is for her and her calves well being. I am very scared that the calf is malpresented and I don't know if I should attempt to check her for fear of making things worse. Any advice would be great. thanks
 

la4angus

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Call your vet. If this is your first experience with cattle, you need professional help.
 

Running Arrow Bill

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You might want to contact your Vet asap. With our cows, once they start pacing, circling, nosing their sides, etc., and bagged up, they'll probably calve within 24 hours. Once the water breaks and the first small water bag protrudes, calving is possibly not more than 4 hours away. Stage 2 of labor should probably not last more than 1 to 4 hours...if it does, contact Vet asap. Once front feet start to protrude, calving will probably happen within an hour or so. A first calf heifer tends to take longer than a "already done that" cow (who can enter Stage 2 labor and calve in 15 to 60 minutes).

The old rule applies: "If in doubt and if you think there is a real problem, get assistance from a knowledgeable cattle neighbor or your Vet".
 

TLCfromARK

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ginnkam":15qouj7e said:
I have a almost three year old hereford cross heifer bred to an easy calving angus hereford cross bull, she was due to calve on April 27, and for the last two days she will lie down and moan and grown, she seems very uncomfortable. She is very swollen on the back end, her udder is reasonably full, and she appears to have dropped (*there is a distinct hollowing around her hip bones (like she lost weight), and her tail is very distinct.) When she swishes her tail she is so loose that it actually jiggles and opens up. I am sorry if I am being too vivid (but this will be my first calf since we started cattle farming). When she lies down she seems to be straining, you can actually see the opening about 5 inches long and 1 inch open in width. There is no discharge that I can see. I guess my main concern is for her and her calves well being. I am very scared that the calf is malpresented and I don't know if I should attempt to check her for fear of making things worse. Any advice would be great. thanks

Here is a web site that someone posted here a short while back that might be helpful.
http://ianrpubs.unl.edu/beef/g539.htm

R.A.Bill & La4angus are correct, you need some assistance from someone, a vet or someone with more knowledge.
I lost a calf about a month ago, out of town when a cow ( 3rd. calf ) was due. Got back and found the cow, it appeared that she had been trying to have it for a couple of days, calf was backwards ( butt first ), got her to the vet. to pull the calf. It was dead but we saved the cow.

Good luck, ;-)
 
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ginnkam

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I am getting a friend out who is a lot more knowledgeable than me. I will see what she thinks. She has raised cows since she could walk! LOL
Anyway, the heifer seems much more comfortable now, so I am almost wondering if she was just a little bloated. I just hope it isn't a lost calf, that would break my heart! I will post when my friend comes by later. Thanks
Ginnett
 

Cattle Rack Rancher

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Everybody has to start somewhere. That's what this board id for is so newcomers can benefit from the experience of those of us who are a little more seasoned or have grown up in the trade. Without looking, ginnkam, I would guess that she may have lost the calf. I would never let them strain away for more than a few hours without checking them for a malpresentation. I lost one earlier this year with the head down and one foot back. By the time the vet made it out, it was too late and he said he wouldn't have been able to do a live delivery without a c-section. From a business point of view in Canada right now, its hard to justify paying a vet but if you can at least save the cow, that's worth something.
 

TLCfromARK

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ginnkam":2uublvkk said:
I am getting a friend out who is a lot more knowledgeable than me. I will see what she thinks. She has raised cows since she could walk! LOL
Anyway, the heifer seems much more comfortable now, so I am almost wondering if she was just a little bloated. I just hope it isn't a lost calf, that would break my heart! I will post when my friend comes by later. Thanks
Ginnett

You still need to have her checked out. When a calf isn't presented correctly the cow will stop contractions for awhile until the calf has rotted enought for her to pass it. If the calf is dead you should be able to tell by the smell.
;-)
 
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ginnkam

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She did just fine, she calved a healthy heifer calf on her own between our midnight and 3 am check. The calf was already nursing when we went out! All is well and both are doing fine! I guess she was just a complainer and didn't have any real difficulty. When my friend was out she said she seemed fine and at most she was maybe carrying twins. Only one calf and the pair are fine! Thanks for your help!
Ginnett
 

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