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Discussion Starter #1
I have a two year old Hereford heifer who has always been very round. I gave up a long time ago on the idea that there was a calf in there, but this last week she has developed a nice looking udder.

So my question is, would a Hereford heifer at this age be developing a nice udder if she was not bred, or is this a good sign that she is? If one of my goats looked like she does, I'd be expecting offspring soon, but I have no experience with calvings.

Her backside looks floppy to me, but not so much as my Dad seems to be telling me it should be. What else should I be looking for?

The latest she could calve, from when the little bull went to the locker, would be some time in August, so I guess I'll know one way or the other in a matter of weeks. I'm just nervous because we have issues with the black-headed vultures, which will actually kill a calf at birthing. We are keeping a close eye, just in case.

thanks for opinions

mary
 

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My goats will start to develop poochy little udders about 6 weeks prior to kidding; not sure about cattle.
 

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Bovine and Range Nerd
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Well, from my limited knowledge from reading and all, if she's getting to be looking like a big barrel on legs, and her udder is starting to fill up, it sounds like she'd be getting close to calving, maybe in a couple weeks. That's about all I can tell you, I'll let other cow-savvy folks fill in on that.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
Thanks, Ladies. If she was a goat, I'd be expecting offspring soon.
But I just don't have experience with cattle, and am hoping someone here knows specifically about Herefords, and whether or not this breed would show udder like this if not expecting. :)

This is what I'm talking about:



 

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www.BilriteFarms.com
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Looks pretty likely to me but as you said, without knowing for sure - time will tell :) It might have been worth it to preg. check her. Our vet is very good at guessing the age of the calf to give us an idea when to expect it.

I don't know if anyone else does this but since it sounds like you are familiar with goats... we've used the tail ligament test to know when our Jersey is close to calving. It is a bit trickier than with the goats but so far it has helped us know when go to on calf watch. LOL we don't try that with our Angus though but most of the time, especially with 1st calf heifers they show a lot of signs of calving before the calf arrives.
 

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I just asked a similar question about my jersey...but lemme tell you yours looks more like calving soon than mine...my jersey's udders are hard and filling up too...and she does have milk....but her backside isn't even close to yours(yet?)but your heifer looks more like she's gonna have something than mine!! good luck to you and her as well!!!
 

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Discussion Starter #10
Thanks for the replies. I didn't know if I was just wishful thinking.
She's been spending a lot of time just laying around under the trees, and we are keeping a close eye on her.
I saw a rather large flock of those black-headed vultures flying around overhead a day or so ago, so that is my biggest concern. They killed a newborn calf that belonged to the man leasing our bigger pasture.

The little bull was nothing special, just something we picked up at auction as a bottle/meat animal. By the looks of him as he grew, he had some dairy something in him. We bought him as a steer, but he wasn't.

mary
 

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Yup, Mary, I'd bet on a calf soon, too! By the way, how many teats does that heifer have? Looks like two extra ones from the poochy butt picture! I'm very envious, by the way! Jan in Co
 

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Discussion Starter #13
Jan in CO said:
Yup, Mary, I'd bet on a calf soon, too! By the way, how many teats does that heifer have? Looks like two extra ones from the poochy butt picture! I'm very envious, by the way! Jan in Co
At least six, maybe seven. Only four seem to be developing, though.
She sure is making me fret waiting and watching her.
mary
 

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Retired farmer-rancher
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Yes,,,,she will calve anytime now, but , can fool you for a few days. I would watch her closely, if the bull was a dairy breed, its possible she may have trouble calving due to the size of the calf. If she labors for a couple of hours without obvious progress, I would call a vet or neighbor who is familiar with calving. She might need an assist.
The extra supernumary teats will not develope in all likelyhood.
 

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Herefords are usually easy calvers but I always bred 1'st calf heiffers to a small birth weight bull to avoid any problems. In your case where the genetics or history of the bull is not known, its a guessing game. I have seen heiffers that labor for a while and give up. Watch for the water bag, once it bursts , don't wait more than an hour or so to see progress. You should see feet and a nose before long, if you see feet and no more progress, get help quickly , unless you are experienced in pulling calves. If this were my heiffer, I would check on her before I go to bed and maybe again in the middle of the night, and early morning.
Feel free to PM me if I can offer any advice, for what it's worth. I calved a lot of cows over the years, but its always an adventure.
 
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