dead cow question

Discussion in 'Cattle' started by Heavenlyangels, Dec 25, 2004.

  1. Hi, My neibor has a cow they aqired about a year ago. My husband thinks they do not feed enough hay & the pasture is bare. This cow calved a few weeks ago and today she is dead. She had a small stream of blood coming from her rectum & some discharge from her vagina. Probably from when she calved. Any one have any ideas of what could have happened? My husband thinks she was not getting enough hay & water. Oh yea she had very little milk. We took care of this cow for about 4 months so it is bothering me what could have been wrong with her. She was a VERY sweet girl!! Thanks for letting me get that off my chest. WHAT COULD HAVE HAPPENED??????????? PS How much milk should a calf get (2 weeks old)
     
  2. Valmai

    Valmai Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    363
    Joined:
    Sep 29, 2004
    Location:
    Land of the Long White Cloud
    Did this cow have a difficult calving? Perhaps some internal damage or retained afterbirth(although she would have had to be in a bad way to die of retained afterbirth that quickly)
    Are you feeding the calf? Most important is to not over feed the calf while it adjusts to something other than mums milk. What are you using CMR or whole milk? Either follow the directions on the CMR bag, or about 1 1/2 to 2 ltrs oof whole milk 2 to 3 times a day to start with. Keep a close eye on it to make sure it doesn't scour. If the back end stays clean you can gradually change to one feed of 5 ltrs a day. If the cow was sick from the start the calf may not have gained full benefit of the colostrum so a chat with your vet would be a good idea.
     

  3. largeanivet

    largeanivet Member

    Messages:
    10
    Joined:
    Jan 16, 2005
    Ok the cow is dead if shes not getting enough food and water and not in good health sounds like she just had her last push in her to get the calf out.. just the hart gave up.. But now do you have the calf ?? If so It MUST HAVE COLOSTRUM NOW at birth or she will SCOUR. the calf should get 4qt of colosturm at birth there is an antibody in that they need and must have. You can go to the farm supply and get powder colostrum feed that fast for at least a week. Then start on calf milk replacer with vit. Also to answer your question about how much to feed a calf Two qt in the morn Then two qt afternoon

    you can Email me if you want scottmir381@aol.com

    Thanks Scott DVM....
     
  4. dosthouhavemilk

    dosthouhavemilk Well-Known Member Supporter

    Messages:
    2,174
    Joined:
    Oct 28, 2004
    Location:
    SE Ohio
    What breed is the calf? If you have access to clean (from a Johne's free cow)cow's milk that is best of course. You can also go with calf milk replacer. Most milk replacers, unless geared towards a breed (like Cow's Match) is generally listed in accordance to what you would feed a Holstein. If the calf is a Jersey you need to be fairly cautious with how much you give it at first. We usually give the calves less than what it suggests on the bags and have found a fairly stable amount for our Jerseys and Jersey/Norwegian Red crosses. Our calves get mother's colostrum (though they really need it within the first 12 hours, 24 on the outside, for it to be beneficial to them)for the first week and then are switched to milk replacer.

    So I guess, to help you we need to know the breed of the calf (gender would be nice as well), how much you have been feeding, whether they received their colostrum (though it sounds like the calf did, right?), how they are doing manure wise on what they are receiving, or was the calf left on the mother until she passed? Is the manure stiff? Runny? Color?


    As far as the mother goes, how long had they had her before she came to you? Was the birth difficult? Was she extremely underweight and underconditioned at birth? What breed was she? How was her appetite after calving? If she wasn't eating well she may have had a twisted stomach which wouldn't necesarrilly show strong outward signs but could kill a cow if left untreated. Was she wobbly? Were her eyes clear? My first instinct was milk fever but at two weeks postpartum and with not much production I am not as inclined to think that.

    Sorry to hear about your loss. It can be frustratint to do all you can for an animal and it not be enough in the end.
     
  5. JeffNY

    JeffNY Seeking Type

    Messages:
    2,102
    Joined:
    Dec 13, 2004
    Location:
    New York
    A cow that is weak, due to improper feeding, an animal that had complications could all result in death. If the cow was not helped, and strained etc, it died calving. We have had issues, but our animals are fed well, they are strong. We also catch them calving, if any problems we try to make it as quick as possible for the animal, then emphasize on getting her up as quick as possible. The more they lay down, the chances of her not getting up increase. But the blood, etc. If this cow died calving, or died shortly after, obviously she was weak already.



    Jeff
     
  6. dosthouhavemilk

    dosthouhavemilk Well-Known Member Supporter

    Messages:
    2,174
    Joined:
    Oct 28, 2004
    Location:
    SE Ohio
    It sounds, from the original post, like the cow calved a few weeks ago which is what has me confused. Is two weeks shortly thereafter? I've never dealt with an animal that was too weak to calve, so I have no clue how long it make take them to die after going through a delivery if they were weak to begin with.
     
  7. wr

    wr Moderator Staff Member Supporter

    Messages:
    16,486
    Joined:
    Aug 10, 2003
    Location:
    Alberta, Canada
    There's a thousand possabilities for the cause of death. Do you happen to know her age? She could still be in calf but old. Calving problems come to mind (breach birth, calf's head tipped back or a leg caught) but then again a retained pacenta can kill a cow if it's left to rot inside her. I don't think I'd pass judgement on a neighbor till I was sure I had all the facts. Perhaps you could simply ask, in conversation what caused the cow to die. I lost a really old cow (28 years old) and before I could have anything done with her carcass, the neighbors had called the SPCA and they had called me demanding the carcass be held until they could look at her. She wasn't thin but because they couldn't see her feeding/water area, they assumed I wasn't bothering.
     
  8. tsdave

    tsdave Grand Marshal

    Messages:
    231
    Joined:
    Nov 3, 2002
    Did you keep if for them to examine ? Does the SPCA have any authority to do that ? What state are you in ? :confused:
     
  9. Jena

    Jena Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    2,489
    Joined:
    Aug 13, 2003
    Why would someone feed a calf colostrum for a week when the gut closes in 24 hours? There might be some small chance of getting a benefit from colostrum for maybe a couple days, but a week??? That stuff is expensive too. Waste of money and time.

    Jena
     
  10. wr

    wr Moderator Staff Member Supporter

    Messages:
    16,486
    Joined:
    Aug 10, 2003
    Location:
    Alberta, Canada
    Jena, so right you are, if they don't have their colostrum within 24 hours, they might as well pour it over the calf's head for all the good it will do.