Question for Vicky the Vet or whomever

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Anonymous

Yesterday Morning had a first time heifer, calf. I found her in the morning with calves feet still about 8 inches in her and the calf dead. She apparently didn't get up after she calved to check things out. That is just a note of interest. Yesterday afternoon another first time heifer, who had been trying to calf for the better part of the afternoon, we ended up pulling ( breech position). She walked away for about ten minutes or so after we got the calf out, then came back and started licking and cleaning it. It was born about 4:00 pm. We watched the pair for an hour or so and the calf didn't get up but was trying with no success. Around 7:00pm we moved them to a stall, I got the little guy up and just kinda stood behind him for support till he got used to his legs. Then I left him go and he stood for 15 minutes or so not walking more than peep-peep steps. My husband checked them at 1:00 am and got him on his feet awhile when he came home from work and said all was well, but we don't know if he ate. If he didn't eat by morning we were going to supplement him with artificial stuff. I found him dead this morning around 6:00am. Now my question after all that rambling. My father in law says he starved to death. Is it possible to starve to death in 10 hrs? We've had others go more toward 24hrs and had to supplement, so I don't think this is true? What do you think!

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OP
A

Anonymous

The calf didnt starve to death. it may have just been a weak calf. breech calves are prone to drowning during delivery and if it inhaled anything into its lungs,that could make it susceptible to pneumonia and such. you have to be careful when and if you bottle feed for the same reason, the healthiest calf could be dead the next morning if you get it down the wrong pipe. as far as the other calf same thing (more of less) goes -it could have suffocated if he wasnt cleaned off around the head or probably had already suffocated during a difficult delivery (i gathered it was difficult since she didnt get up pretty quick). otherwise sounds like the two cases are unrelated. just a run of bad luck, it comes in streaks like that you know. the only advice i have is to use low birth weight epd bulls on your heifers and keep a close watch on them. hope your luck improves..
 
OP
A

Anonymous

> The calf didnt starve to death. it
> may have just been a weak calf.
> breech calves are prone to
> drowning during delivery and if it
> inhaled anything into its
> lungs,that could make it
> susceptible to pneumonia and such.
> you have to be careful when and if
> you bottle feed for the same
> reason, the healthiest calf could
> be dead the next morning if you
> get it down the wrong pipe. as far
> as the other calf same thing (more
> of less) goes -it could have
> suffocated if he wasnt cleaned off
> around the head or probably had
> already suffocated during a
> difficult delivery (i gathered it
> was difficult since she didnt get
> up pretty quick). otherwise sounds
> like the two cases are unrelated.
> just a run of bad luck, it comes
> in streaks like that you know. the
> only advice i have is to use low
> birth weight epd bulls on your
> heifers and keep a close watch on
> them. hope your luck improves..

My husband did say he thought he heard a little raspy sound from the calf when he checked him at 1:00, your probably right. We have a small herd, so each one lost hurts in the wallet. How long would you say the max is for a calf not to nurse before intervention, I know some just have to be hungry enough. Thanks for your response

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OP
A

Anonymous

The calf may have become hypoglycemic from not eating and become hypothermic and died if it was very cold--it was below freezing here last night. It could not have starved to death in that time frame. With two heifers having dead calves in 24 hours, I'd start wondering if you have adequate mineral getting into these animals--is that a problem? Ask away if I'm not clear in my answer... V
 
OP
A

Anonymous

> The calf may have become
> hypoglycemic from not eating and
> become hypothermic and died if it
> was very cold--it was below
> freezing here last night. It could
> not have starved to death in that
> time frame. With two heifers
> having dead calves in 24 hours,
> I'd start wondering if you have
> adequate mineral getting into
> these animals--is that a problem?
> Ask away if I'm not clear in my
> answer... V

We've been at this for five years now and have never had a calf die. Never had to pull either. It was in the 50's last night, so it couldn't have been temperature. They have several mineral blocks sitting around, if that's what you meant by minerals. We are small timers here, not a big operation.I wonder if she could have layed on him or something, of course he's The one we pulled, was alive and looked okay, and found dead this morning. They were both first timer mommas .Though as I wrote Beefy, my husband did say he heard a raspy sound from the calf this morning,I don't know if the other one was alive at birth or not,or if it suffocated like beefy said, from her not cleaning it up and stuff. We have three more mommas due within a week or so with their fourth calves, so if this happens again, I should definitely call a vet in to investigate. And if they are fine, should I just assume these ones died due to neglect from the mother and the other something about his birth? My main question was the one about starving, my father in law said it was cause he didn't get his milk right away, I just can't see this happening in 10 hrs. I know i ramble to much, but I like to know all possiblilities for future knowledge when something like this happens.



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OP
A

Anonymous

The animals don't necessarily take the mineral from the block, and heifers in with mature cattle may not have the access needed to get enough. Also, the main mineral I was thinking of is Selenium, and most blocks only provide minimal amounts of that for the amount they consume. Also, too much selenium is toxic, so don't just whup the selenium to them....a blood test will detect selenium levels and tell you if they are receiving adequate levels.

> We've been at this for five years
> now and have never had a calf die.
> Never had to pull either. It was
> in the 50's last night, so it
> couldn't have been temperature.
> They have several mineral blocks
> sitting around, if that's what you
> meant by minerals. We are small
> timers here, not a big operation.I
> wonder if she could have layed on
> him or something, of course he's
> The one we pulled, was alive and
> looked okay, and found dead this
> morning. They were both first
> timer mommas .Though as I wrote
> Beefy, my husband did say he heard
> a raspy sound from the calf this
> morning,I don't know if the other
> one was alive at birth or not,or
> if it suffocated like beefy said,
> from her not cleaning it up and
> stuff. We have three more mommas
> due within a week or so with their
> fourth calves, so if this happens
> again, I should definitely call a
> vet in to investigate. And if they
> are fine, should I just assume
> these ones died due to neglect
> from the mother and the other
> something about his birth? My main
> question was the one about
> starving, my father in law said it
> was cause he didn't get his milk
> right away, I just can't see this
> happening in 10 hrs. I know i
> ramble to much, but I like to know
> all possiblilities for future
> knowledge when something like this
> happens.
 
OP
A

Anonymous

I read in your post to Vicky hthat youve never had to pull a calf in 5 years. So I'm wondering, when you pulled the calf did you clean out his mouth and nostrils? its a good idea to always do that when you pull a calf as well as remove the sac from its head. Since the calf was breech it likely had some stuff in its nose and mouth b/c like i said breech calves are prone to drowning/suffocating (whatever) b/c the placenta will break during birth and the calf will have to try to breath inside the cow when its oxygen supply is cut off. and if it inhales that fluid, or milk later, it will be susceptible to pneumonia (raspyness suggests that). Same thing goes about suffocation during a normal presentation, the placenta may break and if the calf is stuck at the hips it could suffocate b/c its lungs would not be able to expand enough (very possible this happened to the other calf). I also thought perhaps the pulled calf may have died of hypothermia but i think you said it was in a barn so i decided probably not. Selenium deficiency also crossed my mind but since it sounded like the first heifer had a difficult birth(b/c you said she didnt get up immediately and clean) due to a large calf and/or lack of dilation (not uncommon for a heifer)and the other had a breech calf which is out of your and her control i think the two instances are most likely unrelated. But it certainly wouldnt hurt to get some minerals with selenium if yours don't have it just in case. Like V said, not too much though!

As far as getting the milk goes the sooner the better. if they arent dummies they will usually nurse soon after they first get up. i try to watch them so i'll know for sure, otherwise it can be hard to tell if a cow with a large udder has been nursed. I think V's recommendation is like preferably within 12 hours, 24 is good and definitely within 36 or something..you need to ask her about that. I cant afford to watch them all the time so if i;m not there to watch them when they first try to nurse i give them the benefit of the doubt and hope i can catch them nursing or tell they ahve been the next day. My absolute max would be 48 hours however last year i rescued a heifer that was going on 72 hours without having nursed and she in great health today but this is NOT recommended. the longer you wait the less immunoglobins they get and more susceptible they are to sickness. hope this helped.
 
OP
A

Anonymous

> I read in your post to Vicky hthat
> youve never had to pull a calf in
> 5 years. So I'm wondering, when
> you pulled the calf did you clean
> out his mouth and nostrils? its a
> good idea to always do that when
> you pull a calf as well as remove
> the sac from its head. Since the
> calf was breech it likely had some
> stuff in its nose and mouth b/c
> like i said breech calves are
> prone to drowning/suffocating
> (whatever) b/c the placenta will
> break during birth and the calf
> will have to try to breath inside
> the cow when its oxygen supply is
> cut off. and if it inhales that
> fluid, or milk later, it will be
> susceptible to pneumonia
> (raspyness suggests that). Same
> thing goes about suffocation
> during a normal presentation, the
> placenta may break and if the calf
> is stuck at the hips it could
> suffocate b/c its lungs would not
> be able to expand enough (very
> possible this happened to the
> other calf). I also thought
> perhaps the pulled calf may have
> died of hypothermia but i think
> you said it was in a barn so i
> decided probably not. Selenium
> deficiency also crossed my mind
> but since it sounded like the
> first heifer had a difficult
> birth(b/c you said she didnt get
> up immediately and clean) due to a
> large calf and/or lack of dilation
> (not uncommon for a heifer)and the
> other had a breech calf which is
> out of your and her control i
> think the two instances are most
> likely unrelated. But it certainly
> wouldnt hurt to get some minerals
> with selenium if yours don't have
> it just in case. Like V said, not
> too much though!

> As far as getting the milk goes
> the sooner the better. if they
> arent dummies they will usually
> nurse soon after they first get
> up. i try to watch them so i'll
> know for sure, otherwise it can be
> hard to tell if a cow with a large
> udder has been nursed. I think V's
> recommendation is like preferably
> within 12 hours, 24 is good and
> definitely within 36 or
> something..you need to ask her
> about that. I cant afford to watch
> them all the time so if i;m not
> there to watch them when they
> first try to nurse i give them the
> benefit of the doubt and hope i
> can catch them nursing or tell
> they ahve been the next day. My
> absolute max would be 48 hours
> however last year i rescued a
> heifer that was going on 72 hours
> without having nursed and she in
> great health today but this is NOT
> recommended. the longer you wait
> the less immunoglobins they get
> and more susceptible they are to
> sickness. hope this helped.

I cleaned off the calfs head,mouth and nose the best i could, he really was never a lively little thing at all, comparing now to our newest addition yesterday, who seems to be fine and dandy. But I think you're right about fluid getting in his lungs and such during his birth, all kinda makes since. It was in the high 40's/low 50's that evening so i'm totally ruling out hypothermia. The minerals your talking about, is that something you add to the feed. We're just a little family operation, freezer beef mostly and sell some bulls here and there. We do the best we can on our budget, so we don't go whole hog on things that aren't a must. Not that I think there not necessary, just cut where yah can and still be okay kinda deal. It was my first pull, more less by myself & my son. So I'm assuming I did it right my husband was a work. But hey thank very much for your responses, it's nice to be able to come in here and get some help when yah need it.



[email protected]
 
OP
A

Anonymous

> Yesterday Morning had a first time
> heifer, calf. I found her in the
> morning with calves feet still
> about 8 inches in her and the calf
> dead. She apparently didn't get up
> after she calved to check things
> out. That is just a note of
> interest. Yesterday afternoon
> another first time heifer, who had
> been trying to calf for the better
> part of the afternoon, we ended up
> pulling ( breech position). She
> walked away for about ten minutes
> or so after we got the calf out,
> then came back and started licking
> and cleaning it. It was born about
> 4:00 pm. We watched the pair for
> an hour or so and the calf didn't
> get up but was trying with no
> success. Around 7:00pm we moved
> them to a stall, I got the little
> guy up and just kinda stood behind
> him for support till he got used
> to his legs. Then I left him go
> and he stood for 15 minutes or so
> not walking more than peep-peep
> steps. My husband checked them at
> 1:00 am and got him on his feet
> awhile when he came home from work
> and said all was well, but we
> don't know if he ate. If he didn't
> eat by morning we were going to
> supplement him with artificial
> stuff. I found him dead this
> morning around 6:00am. Now my
> question after all that rambling.
> My father in law says he starved
> to death. Is it possible to starve
> to death in 10 hrs? We've had
> others go more toward 24hrs and
> had to supplement, so I don't
> think this is true? What do you
> think!

Just wanted to share. Two of our seasoned cows gave birth in the last couple days, their calves are fine and healthy.



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