nursing problem

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Anonymous

Once again I need to ask for some help from those more experienced. My latest problem - I've got a 2-day old calf that hasn't nursed yet. The cow's teats are swollen and he can't suck them. I was able to milk some of the milk out this afternoon and feed it to the calf so at least it got some of mom's first milk. My fear is that she may not let him suck when I finally get some of the swelling down and the teats back to a more normal size. I plan to continue using mom's milk and have some milk replacer on hand if the original plan falls through. The cow still is showing interest and concern for her baby - is acting protective and all but walks away when he gets close to try to nurse. Any suggestions on how to get her and baby back on nature's course?

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Anonymous

I'm asuming that you have a way to restrain the cow since you said that you milked her. Either a squeeze chute or halter and tying to a post in a corner. The next time when the calf is hungry enough to suck put some in the bottle again, just enogh to let him suck a little, the place up to the cow and help him by placing cows nipple. depending on the cow and how gentle she is you should either be able to just talk to her to stop kicking or you may need to tie a foot, or put a kicker on that they use for problem first time dairy cows. Some calves are quicker than others. Takes alot of patience to get a problem calf started.

I read that the calf is 2 days old and just today got its first colostrum. You may have problems yet to come with this calf. It is important to try and make sure that calves have goten up and sucked in the first four hours. After that the lining in the stomache looses the ability to completly absorbe the antibodies. I believe after 12 hours that any benifit is lost. After 4 hours you loose about 50% and it rapidly depletes from there on.
> Once again I need to ask for some
> help from those more experienced.
> My latest problem - I've got a
> 2-day old calf that hasn't nursed
> yet. The cow's teats are swollen
> and he can't suck them. I was able
> to milk some of the milk out this
> afternoon and feed it to the calf
> so at least it got some of mom's
> first milk. My fear is that she
> may not let him suck when I
> finally get some of the swelling
> down and the teats back to a more
> normal size. I plan to continue
> using mom's milk and have some
> milk replacer on hand if the
> original plan falls through. The
> cow still is showing interest and
> concern for her baby - is acting
> protective and all but walks away
> when he gets close to try to
> nurse. Any suggestions on how to
> get her and baby back on nature's
> course?

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A

Anonymous

> I'm asuming that you have a way to
> restrain the cow since you said
> that you milked her. Either a
> squeeze chute or halter and tying
> to a post in a corner. The next
> time when the calf is hungry
> enough to suck put some in the
> bottle again, just enogh to let
> him suck a little, the place up to
> the cow and help him by placing
> cows nipple. depending on the cow
> and how gentle she is you should
> either be able to just talk to her
> to stop kicking or you may need to
> tie a foot, or put a kicker on
> that they use for problem first
> time dairy cows. Some calves are
> quicker than others. Takes alot of
> patience to get a problem calf
> started.

> I read that the calf is 2 days old
> and just today got its first
> colostrum. You may have problems
> yet to come with this calf. It is
> important to try and make sure
> that calves have goten up and
> sucked in the first four hours.
> After that the lining in the
> stomache looses the ability to
> completly absorbe the antibodies.
> I believe after 12 hours that any
> benifit is lost. After 4 hours you
> loose about 50% and it rapidly
> depletes from there on. Thanks for the tip. My husband and I tried it and he went to town. We noticed though that he looks like he may be blind. I've watched him for several hours and though he can get up - he doesn't seem to want to. Guess it could be lack of energy. I gave him some more of mom's milk (didn't have much left from milking her this morning) and mixed it with some milk replacer. I could only get about a cup or so down him. He shows no interest. The cow's bag still looks empty. Do you suppose he's nursed when I wasn't looking?

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Anonymous

Yes it is quite possible that he is sucking when your not around. As long as his mouth remains warm, and he doesn't look dehydrated he probly is sucking. Try to gauge how full the cows utters get and watch to see if they seem to go down. Sometimes hard to catch that new calf sucking when your not sure. You can usually get a good guess if they seem alert and full of energy that they're doing fine.

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Anonymous

If I'm unsure if a calf has sucked. I mix up a dairy teat dip (it's blue & thick) with food color to make it dark blue. Then I dip each tit. They stay blue until the calf sucks it! Works great. You could probably use milk colored with food blue - or any color that will show up on the color cow you have. I bought a gallon of teat dip & have been using it for several years. Also bought a regular dairy dip cup. Really handy cup. I have one for dipping the naval with iodine. And, getting the colostrum in a calf the first 4 hours is EXTREMELY critical. Watch this calf closely for two months for sickness. His immune system will not be able to handle any challenges IF he really didn't suck. Jeanne
> Yes it is quite possible that he
> is sucking when your not around.
> As long as his mouth remains warm,
> and he doesn't look dehydrated he
> probly is sucking. Try to gauge
> how full the cows utters get and
> watch to see if they seem to go
> down. Sometimes hard to catch that
> new calf sucking when your not
> sure. You can usually get a good
> guess if they seem alert and full
> of energy that they're doing fine.

Simme Valley in NY
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Anonymous

> If I'm unsure if a calf has
> sucked. I mix up a dairy teat dip
> (it's blue & thick) with food
> color to make it dark blue. Then I
> dip each tit. They stay blue until
> the calf sucks it! Works great.
> You could probably use milk
> colored with food blue - or any
> color that will show up on the
> color cow you have. I bought a
> gallon of teat dip & have been
> using it for several years. Also
> bought a regular dairy dip cup.
> Really handy cup. I have one for
> dipping the naval with iodine.
> And, getting the colostrum in a
> calf the first 4 hours is
> EXTREMELY critical. Watch this
> calf closely for two months for
> sickness. His immune system will
> not be able to handle any
> challenges IF he really didn't
> suck. Jeanne Thought I'd let ya'll know how the calf is doing - well, I tried tubing the calf several times when it showed absolutely no interest in sucking. I used mom's own milk, the milk replacer, and my mixture. No interest in any of it! Matter of fact, seemed like he was too "stupid" to know he had to eat to live. Having to work daily and not being able to tend to him all day or frequently, I decided to just let him get with mom and let the chips fall where they may. Surprise, surprise, surprise, they're both getting along much better without any interference from me. Who'd of thought it - she seemed not to pay any attention to him - he seemed not to want to eat. Guess things aren't always what they seem to be. So thanks for all of the help. I'm sure I'll be back again before long with some new issue to explore. Bye!

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