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Wobbly calf that gains strength as she stands

dburkhart

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We had a calf born a little over a week ago. Fought a temp and administered meds -- vet thought it was pneumonia and meds seemed to work. However, the calf seems to have trouble gaining its balance when it gets up from laying down. She wobbles and has trouble getting her balance. After she "walks the stiffness off", she is better--running, kicking, jumping with no apparent problems. We dipped the navel as soon as we saw she was born but didn't actually see her born so don't know if the birth was normal. Any ideas?
 

msscamp

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Keep her moving around. Make her get up on a regular basis - every couple of hours if possible. Support her if needed, but keep her moving around. Watch her and make sure she is nursing on a regular basis, as well. The more she nurses and moves around, the stronger she will be.
 

S&WSigma40VEShooter

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dburkhart":1cd8by6z said:
We had a calf born a little over a week ago. Fought a temp and administered meds -- vet thought it was pneumonia and meds seemed to work. However, the calf seems to have trouble gaining its balance when it gets up from laying down. She wobbles and has trouble getting her balance. After she "walks the stiffness off", she is better--running, kicking, jumping with no apparent problems. We dipped the navel as soon as we saw she was born but didn't actually see her born so don't know if the birth was normal. Any ideas?


Had one like that here recently I saved. Hit it hard with antibiotics. For three days I tubed it with electrolytes two times a day. After that it was strong enough to run around and nurse by itself. It hasnt looked back since and is fat as can be now. At the time I found it it was laying around, had maggots all over it even in its eyes. I put fly spray all over it and flushed his eye with saline solution. He has been fine since but that feller had a rough start for sure. I say give that calf some electrolytes that should help it gets its strength up as this feller wobbled around and fell down alot until I got the electrolytes in him.
 

RICHARDL

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When you are talking about electrlytes? what type or kind are you talking about. I'd like to keep some on hand ? :cowboy:
 

dburkhart

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Thanks for the help. When she was running such a high temp, we gave electrolytes. But I didn't think about giving her more once she started nursing again. I'll give it a try. I was worried she may have joint disease or some genetic defect. It's a relief that it could just be that she needs a little more nutrients.
 

hillsdown

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Electrolytes is a good idea and give her some B12 and vitamin a&d alos; her PH balance more than likely is off because her being sick before. I would do 2-3 feedings a day of electrolytes until she is feeling perkier and more stable while moving.

The B12 and A&D can be mixed in her electrolytes, tube her if she will not drink any.

Don't forget some probiotics a couple of tables spoons of yogurt will do if you cannot find any and that can be mixed in the electrolytes as well..
 

S&WSigma40VEShooter

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RICHARDL":1f5qgotw said:
When you are talking about electrlytes? what type or kind are you talking about. I'd like to keep some on hand ? :cowboy:


Dont remember honestly. I got em from the neighbor that runs a dairy. She mixed em and gave em to me to tube feed. I could find out though.
 

RICHARDL

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AH NEVER MIND I LOOKED IT UP ALREADY. planning to get some to keep on hand. I lost a calf a few weeks back. we tried milk & milk replacer. but we didn't try electolytes the vet didn't mention it at least. we had it up on its feet for a few days but she went down on the 4Th day and could never reagain her strength again.
 

S&WSigma40VEShooter

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RICHARDL":3b57pt3g said:
AH NEVER MIND I LOOKED IT UP ALREADY. planning to get some to keep on hand. I lost a calf a few weeks back. we tried milk & milk replacer. but we didn't try electolytes the vet didn't mention it at least. we had it up on its feet for a few days but she went down on the 4Th day and could never reagain her strength again.


Yeah this lady runs close to 50 bottle calves a year on their farm so she has all that mess. If I need it I just ask her for it.
 

rockridgecattle

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Like Hd said, electrolytes are needed. The PH is off balance and needs to be restored. We had this problem when calves would scour and not get over it quickly or they got quite sick. A fever, or scours can dehydrate the body real fast and it is difficult to replace the essentials with just water and then the calves act drunk or tipsy.
Amazing what a drench bag of water and vitamins and minerals will do.
 

msscamp

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dburkhart":1ov09rgf said:
It's a relief that it could just be that she needs a little more nutrients.

Electrolytes are not nutrients - they are basic elements such as potassium, salt, etc., that are designed to offset dehydration and keep the calfs system in balance. If she is nursing, and drinking water she does not need electrolytes, and they will simply fill her up and cause her to not want to nurse because she is full.
 

Jeanne - Simme Valley

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msscamp":2tt4n5ow said:
dburkhart":2tt4n5ow said:
It's a relief that it could just be that she needs a little more nutrients.

Electrolytes are not nutrients - they are basic elements such as potassium, salt, etc., that are designed to offset dehydration and keep the calfs system in balance. If she is nursing, and drinking water she does not need electrolytes, and they will simply fill her up and cause her to not want to nurse because she is full.
Kinda what I was thinking. Electrolytes are excellent when a calf is dehydrated. It is not nutrients. She is nursing & getting all the nutrients she should need.
I'm not familiar with your area as far as Selenium deficiency. If there is any chance your area is deficient, she might need a shot of BoSe (Se) But, I know some areas out west are HIGH in SE. You have to get SE from a vet, so they will know what's norm for your area. Before cattlemen knew about SE deficiency (White Muscle Disease), there would be reports of a "healthy" calf getting turned out & it would run to play - and drop dead. WMD affects the large muscles, heart, lungs, leg muscles, tongue, etc.
 

hillsdown

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You guys need to talk to your vet just what exactly electrolytes are used for. It is not just dehydration. It gets the calf's PH balance back in sync..

If your calf is week or unable to stand after an illnes that usually was acompanied by scouring you still need to give electrolyes.. NO it is not getting everything from the milk. There are vitamins and minerals that it's little body cannot or has not been able to absorb becasue of the illness, thus electrloytes are the only way to get them back to normal.
 

msscamp

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hillsdown":1brx1zfw said:
You guys need to talk to your vet just what exactly electrolytes are used for. It is not just dehydration. It gets the calf's PH balance back in sync..

If your calf is week or unable to stand after an illnes that usually was acompanied by scouring you still need to give electrolyes.. NO it is not getting everything from the milk. There are vitamins and minerals that it's little body cannot or has not been able to absorb becasue of the illness, thus electrloytes are the only way to get them back to normal.

Whatever you think. I know what electrolytes are used for, as well as what they cannot provide.
 

mnmtranching

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Electrolytes sure wouldn't hurt. There are good over the counter inexpensive products to supplement young calves. I always have plenty of this stuff on hand during calving. Vitamins, mineral, protein in packets that make 2 quarts. And I also always have colostrum replacement on hand. Any sign of any problem the calf is given supplements. Works. I hardly ever have to treat a sick calf.
 

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