Odd-ball Defect

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Workinonit Farm

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Full-term bull calf, born alive. Hairless (for all intents and purposes), missing an eye-ball and blind in the other eye. Other than the missing eye and hair, appears to be normal and fully formed. Mother claimed it, calf didn't stand and suck, but has/had the sucking reflex and would suck fingers. Calf was brought to the lab where it will be euthanized and tested. The calf is/was 100% Black Angus, out of 100% cow (non-registered) AI bred. At this time I do not know the sire but can and will find out. Not one of my animals.

Very interesting. I've not actually seen anything quite like this before.

Didn't have my camera, therefore I have no pictures. But, imagine one of those hairless cat or dog breeds, with one eye 'sealed' shut with no eye-ball behind it and the other eye all cloudy blue. Very odd.

Until the lab results become available, any ideas?

Katherine
 

dun

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We hada calf a couple of years ago that had no tail when it was born, not even what looked like a tail root. I'm surprised that with how complicated the whole fetal development thing is that there aren;t more defects.
 
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Workinonit Farm

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dun":2crbxznv said:
I'm surprised that with how complicated the whole fetal development thing is that there aren;t more defects.

I never thought about it that way.

When I worked at a Thoroughbred breeding farm, there were some odd deals with some of the foals. The most common ones I dealt with were bladder and urethra issues with colts (male foals). Burst bladders and urethras that went elsewhere rather than through/in the penis, yet there were penile openings :? . I know a similar defect happens in human male baies, the opening is elsewhere.

Katherine
 

jilleroo

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A few months ago we had a cow give birth to a strong and lively white charbray heifer calf, with hair. She had normal ears, a normal eye on the off-side, no eye on the nearside but a thick flap of skin with coarse hair where the eye would be. But she had two mouths! The face was foreshortened greatly - each mouth had a tongue but it was the smaller mouth on the eyeless side with which she was trying to suck the cow. That mouth was twisted out at an angle so she had no hope of getting the teat. Hubby shot her and wouldnt let me take photos - he said to go photograph one of the many good ones, not the crappy one! Fair enough.
 

Lucky_P

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Top rule-out on my list would be BVD.
Lupines catch a lot of blame - even in areas of the country where they don't even grow - like the entire Southeast.
Other potentially teratogenic plants are out there, and are common(Conium spp. most common in TN/KY), but in most cases, cows won't consume them unless there's not much else available - but, IF they ARE the problem, they were consumed during the first weeks of pregancy, and any residual/detectible toxic components are long gone; they exert their deformative effects early in fetal development, when limb buds/spine/cranial bones are first forming.
 
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Workinonit Farm

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Interesting replies. Thank you.

Jilleroo---too bad you couldn't get a pic of that calf.

As for lupine, none in the pastures. The herd this cow/calf are from have excellent grazing, good mineral program, vaccinations always up to date and dewormed regularly. The health program is a bit 'more' than most well run places.

When I hear from these folks about the lab results, I'll post what I find out.

Thank you again for all the replies so far.

Katherine
 

Caustic Burno

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Workinonit Farm":125cxwj8 said:
Full-term bull calf, born alive. Hairless (for all intents and purposes), missing an eye-ball and blind in the other eye. Other than the missing eye and hair, appears to be normal and fully formed. Mother claimed it, calf didn't stand and suck, but has/had the sucking reflex and would suck fingers. Calf was brought to the lab where it will be euthanized and tested. The calf is/was 100% Black Angus, out of 100% cow (non-registered) AI bred. At this time I do not know the sire but can and will find out. Not one of my animals.

Very interesting. I've not actually seen anything quite like this before.

Didn't have my camera, therefore I have no pictures. But, imagine one of those hairless cat or dog breeds, with one eye 'sealed' shut with no eye-ball behind it and the other eye all cloudy blue. Very odd.

Until the lab results become available, any ideas?

Katherine

Is it an English breed calf if so read up on snorters

http://www.iowabeefcenter.org/pdfs/bch/01900.pdf
 

Roadapple

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dun":1r7vg2bq said:
We hada calf a couple of years ago that had no tail when it was born, not even what looked like a tail root. I'm surprised that with how complicated the whole fetal development thing is that there aren;t more defects.
Had a similar calf a few yrs. back born with no tail, but also no anus. Just as smooth a rear end as you could get. Nice looking calf which I thought was a wek old and I had missed tagging as he was tearing around the lot leading about 6 more calves. Called vet and had him checked out, as vet said sometimes they can fix it, but not this one. Such a lively little guy I hated putting him down.
 

dun

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Roadapple":quykp5ex said:
dun":quykp5ex said:
We hada calf a couple of years ago that had no tail when it was born, not even what looked like a tail root. I'm surprised that with how complicated the whole fetal development thing is that there aren;t more defects.
Had a similar calf a few yrs. back born with no tail, but also no anus. Just as smooth a rear end as you could get. Nice looking calf which I thought was a wek old and I had missed tagging as he was tearing around the lot leading about 6 more calves. Called vet and had him checked out, as vet said sometimes they can fix it, but not this one. Such a lively little guy I hated putting him down.
The one we had ended up grading well on the rail, don;t think I even got docked for the lack of ox tail soup fixings.
 
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Workinonit Farm

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Roadapple, up where I work, we had one like that a few years ago. Nice looking bull calf, happy little fella. He too was put down.

Strange things do happen. I'm always interested in the what and hows of the causes.

Katherine
 

Jeanne - Simme Valley

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tncattle467":3gi6nmef said:
Lucky_P":3gi6nmef said:
Top rule-out on my list would be BVD.
Lupines catch a lot of blame - even in areas of the country where they don't even grow - like the entire Southeast.
Other potentially teratogenic plants are out there, and are common(Conium spp. most common in TN/KY), but in most cases, cows won't consume them unless there's not much else available - but, IF they ARE the problem, they were consumed during the first weeks of pregancy, and any residual/detectible toxic components are long gone; they exert their deformative effects early in fetal development, when limb buds/spine/cranial bones are first forming.


Actually according to the book Keeping Livestock Healthy you are incorrect in that it wont cause problems but I wont argue with you.
You might do a better job in READING what he posted. He never said Lupines aren't toxic.
 

Lucky_P

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Right. I never said that lupines weren't toxic, and they have been well-documented to cause arthrogryposis(curly calf) - but that's primarily in areas well west of the Mississippi.

My point was that lupines are not at all common anywhere in the Southeastern US - even folks who TRY to grow them here for ornamental purposes have a hard time getting them to make a go of it. With 50+ yrs in the cattle business and 25+ yrs veterinary experience - mostly in the Southeast, I've never knowingly even seen a lupine growing in a pasture, and have never really suspected lupines as a cause of congenital anomalies in this part of the country.

Lupines don't even make the lists of common 'poisonous' plants for the Southeastern US.
http://www.caf.wvu.edu/~forage/library/poisonous/
Since the original poster is in VA, I didn't feel that it was a stretch to discount the likelihood of lupines being the cause of their abnormal calf.
 

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