Nutty Cow

Discussion in 'Cattle' started by Jena, Mar 19, 2004.

  1. Jena

    Jena Well-Known Member

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    This afternoon, I noticed one of my cows getting ready to calve. This is her second calf. I sat and watched. She spit the baby out, jumped up and started licking. That's all good, but she started bellowing like I have never heard a new mom bellow. It was like she thought she gave birth to a coyote or something.

    She bellering, licking and shoving that calf all over the place. I thought she might be nervous because she had it near the feed bunk and there was lots of company around. I thought I would not help matters any, so I just waited.

    All the other cows left. She seemed to settle down some, but everytime that calf made an attempt to get up, she would start bellering and knock it down again. This went on for an hour.

    I got my ATV (I never go to check newborn calves just on foot, you'll see why) and went out to check things out. She had shoved that baby through a high tensile fence. Calf was the other side, trying to get up. The cows have access to both sides of this fence, but they can be so dumb...can't figure out how to go around.

    My plan was to shove the calf back through the fence to it's mom. I got off the ATV, keeping an eye on mom all the time. She did not back off like they usually do. I yelled and she backed up a bit. I reached down to get the calf and BAM, that %$#%$ came straight at me like a freight train. She got her head through the fence, but it held. I stood up, kicked her in the nose, threw rocks at her face, yelling at the top of my lungs the whole time. She never even flinched.

    I decided maybe going to plan "B" would be prudent. She finally backed off when I got on the ATV and drove away.

    I drove the ATV around the fence to try to get mom to go around to her calf. I have never, ever had a cow challenge the ATV. This one did. She got her head on the front end and almost shoved me over. I was half ready for this and even if she did throw it over, I was ready to jump off and behind it, but that pretty much made me decide on plan "C".

    I left. I sure hope she figures out how to get to her calf and how to allow it to get up and nurse. If not, I'm going to shoot the #$$%$#!!! Not really, but I need back up for this one.

    I don't have nutty cows. I don't keep nutty cows. This one will be going to town on the next trailer out of here. No cow is worth dying for.

    I'm writing this to remind people that you never know. She gave me zero trouble last year with her calf. She's never been nutty before, but today she could have easily killed me if I didn't follow my own rules (don't check calves on foot!). If she had come through that fence, the only thing between me and a bulldozer would have been my vehicle. Even upside down, it would save my life.

    Be careful out there and never, ever stop thinking!

    Jena
     
  2. Wanda

    Wanda Well-Known Member

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    Jena
    Good job for being on your toes!! You may as well go get the calf and bottle it. If she goes around the fence she will but it away till she kills it :waa: When they trip out like this they will focus on the calf. I would put her in a lot so she can't get thru a fence, and make her grow wheels at the first chance. I think Rockville has there sale tomorow and that would be none to soon!!!!
    Mr. Wanda
    Mike
     

  3. Jena

    Jena Well-Known Member

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    When I went back out about an hour later, she was standing there serenely nursing her calf. I didn't go out in the pasture because I didn't want her to get stirred up again. At least the calf is getting colostrum.

    I can't make Rockville this morning, but Thursday we have our sale.

    Jena
     
  4. Jackpine Savage

    Jackpine Savage Well-Known Member

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    Good job Jena, and a good reminder for us all. These animals are big, and they can do a lot of damage even when they are being friendly or frightened, let alone when they intend to do harm!
     
  5. uncle Will in In.

    uncle Will in In. Well-Known Member Supporter

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    If something to do with her calving caused her to have a fever it may have caused her to go out of her normal mental state for a while. She will most likely settle down and cause no more problems but you don't know that and should take no chances. They would sell good as a pair this time of year but not so well without the calf as a slaughter cow.
     
  6. pumpkinlady

    pumpkinlady Well-Known Member

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    Jena, I would send her to the auction as soon as you feel you can wean the new calf. I believe it is important for the calve to be on it's mother as long as possible but when you do go to seperate these 2 she might get agressive again. A couple of years ago my husband called me out in the field to keep watch over a cow when he was going to band her calf. I, like a fool, ran as quick as I could because my husband was yelling for me to hurry, and didn't even take the time to grab a pitch fork. Well needless to say, when ole mama cow got to close to my husband it was my job to keep her away. Here I am, out in a swamp, nothing to **** her away with and she is coming in on my husband. I, like a fool, (didn't I already say that) leaned over and smacked her on the head. The cow swung her head up and flipped me in the air and turned me around and started to push me thru a swamp. I was screaming, my husband dropped the calf, grabbed the cow around the neck and kept yelling for me to get up and run. I was too scared to get up and just lay there trying to protect my neck and head. (cows aren't like bears, you shouldn't play dead, they just keep attacking). Finally the cow left me alone and went to her calve. We shipped this cow real quick. Later we found out that this cow attacked the last owner's wife and the only thing that saved the woman was she was able to get under a truck (the cow broke her hip and a leg). NOPE, NO COW IS WORTH KEEPING, if she shows any signs of aggression. Please be careful with her....Laurie
     
  7. agmantoo

    agmantoo agmantoo Supporter

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    Jena, I work my cattle alone and I appreciate what you were confronted with. I bought a high voltage wand like a utility meter reader carries, it is like a very powerful stun gun, and I carry it when I have a "problem". Again like yourself, the source of the trouble goes to the sale. I am of the opinion that cattle can learn bad habits from other cattle. I know that if one is "flight prone" that soon the whole herd will get skittish. Be safe!
     
  8. wr

    wr Moderator Staff Member Supporter

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    agmantoo, what a great idea. It's something I would look into cause I'm often alone and I've had the misfortune of being rolled through the pasture, knowing no help was on the way. We're purebred breeders and our reputation depends on the temperament of our cattle. If we have any serious temperament problems, they get turned into hamburger or they're sold as canners only. I actually skip the auction and call the guy that makes his living buying canner cows and make a direct sale. Any calves would never be sold as purebreds and would likely be sold as roping calves. I'm always afraid of having something with our brand bought at auction and hearing later that someone was injured.
     
  9. Jena

    Jena Well-Known Member

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    After this incident, I was thinking maybe carrying around a cattle prod would be a good idea. I've never owned one before.

    The guy who lives in the farm house was walking down the lane today. It runs along the cow pasture. He came to tell me that the "bull" was pawing and snorting at him, even though he was on the other side of the lane, away from the cows.

    Guess who the "bull" turned out to be?

    She's outta here on Thursday. I'm still undecided as to whether to keep the calf or not. I don't really have time to mess with a bottle baby, but I don't want to sell her as a pair to someone else. Usually when I sell a nut, I make sure they go to slaughter.

    Jena
     
  10. wr

    wr Moderator Staff Member Supporter

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    Jena, is there a 4H kid in the area that might be willing to take on the calf? We've helped kids out along the way, sometimes we share costs and split the proceeds of the calf in the fall. Other times, if we have a kid who's worked hard and done a really good job, we'll just let him have the calf as a reward for hard work.
     
  11. TedH71

    TedH71 Well-Known Member Supporter

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    Don't you have a good cow dog...catahoula, blackmouth cur, blue lacy or perhaps even a heeler? They'll keep the cow occupied. That's what their job is :)

    Ted
     
  12. Jena

    Jena Well-Known Member

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    wr,

    Last year I gave away a set of twins to someone who wanted to raise a calf, but didn't have the money. The deal was supposed to be that we'd get one back, but I ended up letting him keep both.

    I haven't heard of any kids looking for bucket calves, though I haven't looked. Maybe I'll call the 4-H leader.

    Jena
     
  13. Christiaan

    Christiaan Dutch Highlands Farm

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    Our cow isn't a nut, but she did have a bit of a personality change when she calved. In the six months that we had had her she had only bellowed once, and it wasn't much of a bellow. From the moment she dropped the calf and for about two hours she bellowed fairly constantly. Then it was back to almost normal. We can get a bellow from her maybe once or twice a week.