lost a calf

Discussion in 'Cattle' started by vtfarma, Mar 30, 2005.

  1. vtfarma

    vtfarma Well-Known Member

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    We are so frustrated. We noticed crows out back circling an area of our property. DH went to investigate today and found what appears to be a full term bull calf tan with white face disembowelled by the birds.

    We were noticing that our momma cow that is actually due last of all our mommas was bagging (not due until 5/24/05 and is always late) She is still nursing casually her 11 month old who didn't seem to be too vigorous for a few days and momma's bag was definitely full - not as much as her usual milker bag when she is due but still getting larger. The last 2 pregnancies she has had such a huge bag it was hard for her to walk. Well she doesn't look as pregnant tonight. She is the one all the males are trying to jump. I know that they try when they are getting close, I know they try after but I am just heart broken thinking that she lost one. I was commenting yesterday that she is starting to look close (within 2 weeks - close)-we had better watch her - her tail is starting to move to the side but not disappearing into the pelvic area. I cannot believe that she had it and lost it. I am just heartbroken. I feel so guilty - we usually know if they pass gas or scratch their backs. None of our animals should be due before 4/17 and Reba was 5/25. We do have a neighbor with one heifer that was pregnant - due around the time ours are. Maybe it was from them and it got dragged by the coydogs. They have lost every calf that this poor thing has had and a bull to lightening.

    All the rest of the pregos are looking very pregnant, comfortable and not being chased. She went into heat on 8/12/04 and is usually 292 days.

    Oh well just looking for input - not really anything we can do now.

    The other thing that is bugging me is that their is no afterbirth or anything coming out of any of them.
     
  2. wr

    wr Moderator Staff Member Supporter

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    I'm curious why you would allow her previous calf to still be hanging on her. He should have been weaned long before now to allow her time to build herself back up to have a calf and start the milking process all over again. Perhaps she wasn't as healthy as you assumed or perhaps there are other reasons contributing to the loss of the calf. What vaccinations has she had, how is her feed quality? You do realize that the calf should have been weaned or you were setting yourself up to watch the new calf starve to death or you'd end up with a bottle baby? The stronger calf will push the younger out of the way to feed.
     

  3. vtfarma

    vtfarma Well-Known Member

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    Vegas nurses only a little in the am and rarely in the pm. It is more of a comfort thing. We have always let them do that. They actually will usually use the yearling to nurse to stimulate their contractions.

    Feed is as usual, hay and a serving of coarse 16 in the evening. Plenty of fresh water. No illnesses, she is our powerhouse - her and her first daughter that is.

    It just doesn't fit timing wise or size wise.-
     
  4. vtfarma

    vtfarma Well-Known Member

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    sorry - posted to quick. The nursing thing, as I said, we have always allowed. They are not nursing alot. Not a single yearling has nursed after the calf is born. We have had them calling their yearlings when they are in labor to come nurse. Seems to have helped in the long labors to get things rolling.
     
  5. wr

    wr Moderator Staff Member Supporter

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    I'm sorry I have no idea what number 16 is. Could you hay be mouldy? What vaccinations does she have, there are silent diseases that cause cattle to miscarry. I'm also in disagreement of leaving a previous calf on a cow, she should be allowed to dry up and start the milk cycle over again.
     
  6. Momof8kiddoes

    Momof8kiddoes Well-Known Member

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    Just popping in..sorry to hear of your loss :eek:( that is too bad!!
    Mary F.
     
  7. cowman

    cowman Well-Known Member

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    Very possibly the reason you lost the calf is because of letting the older calf nurse for so long. You may think it wasn't nursing much but it don't take a big calf long to get all her milk. The new calf probably starved to death unless it was born dead. It may have come early because of the big calf bumping her in the side. I have heard of that. I let a calf stay on a cow too long before because I didn't realize it was time yet and the new calf was so weak that I lost it. It is just not a good idea to let them nurse past 6 or 7 months.
     
  8. herefordman

    herefordman Well-Known Member

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    Ditto on the not letting the older calf nurse, I ended up with a bottle baby last year because mom got confused with who the newbie was, and chased her year old calf around like it was the newborn.
    she completely turned on the new calf and I had to rescue it, otherwise it was going to become the herd basketball.
     
  9. vtfarma

    vtfarma Well-Known Member

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    I guess that is something to be considered. This momma has not had any problems- she is our ace in the hole so to speak. We have one that I would say would do that but she is still very much pregnant

    The vet is coming down today to check her out. We'll see what we need to do from there. None of the yearlings are nursing more than a nip once a day usually. The are on the teat for a few sucks and then gone.

    Thanks