What to do with afterbirth

Discussion in 'Cattle' started by MillsFarmFamily, Apr 21, 2006.

  1. MillsFarmFamily

    MillsFarmFamily Well-Known Member

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    We have a cow that calved 2 days ago, and the afterbirth is still hanging. What should we do. DH says it stinks REALLY bad. He tried tugging a little yesterday, but it wouldn't budge.
     
  2. Jena

    Jena Well-Known Member

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    You don't need a vet...yet.

    Let it go a few more days. Do NOT pull on it as you may tear it and leave a piece inside or damage the uterine lining. You can tie a knot in it and see if that helps it to come out.

    If it's still hanging after a week, I'd go get a shot of oxytocin to give her and see if that doesn't do it.

    If she does develop a fever, goes off feed, or otherwise starts acting sick, then give her a shot of antibiotics and consult the vet.

    Jena
     

  3. Up North

    Up North KS dairy farmers

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    Jena gives good counsel. Would do just as she says. We might also insert some afterbirth boluses for cleansing effect.
     
  4. Tad

    Tad Well-Known Member

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    Novasane afterbirth boluses are outlawed now I think. Figures the stuff that works is always bad for you! Give a PG shot on day 5 after calveing does the trick 99% of the time. DOn't worry unless she goes off feed. We have had ythem get pretty stinky in the summer before they drop. Another PG shot 14 days later is also good after a retained placenta it will dump all the left over fluid out and it will be less of a problem for breed back.
    Tad
     
  5. Up North

    Up North KS dairy farmers

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    Yeah, the boluses they sell now are pretty weak. But they kill some of bacteria and help some cows, don't do any harm. A 5 ml shot of MU-SE (a Vitamin E-Selenium booster which requires a Vet's prescription) can help cow with muscle control and produces contractions which can slough off retained afterbirths. It also helps with Holstein heifers that have hard time getting up and down post-calving.
     
  6. savinggrace

    savinggrace COO of manure management

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    Some people don't cut placentas from babies-they wash and salt the placenta to keep it from harming the babies.

    Is that an option?
     
  7. Up North

    Up North KS dairy farmers

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    Not sure I understand your "take" on this. With cattle, the placenta is separated from calf naturally, as cow licks or chews it away while cleaning calf. Doesn't normally pose danger to calf. If cow doesn't expel it, it can decay and cause buildup of bacteria inside cow which can make cow sick or even kill it if not corrected. Thus it is imperative to monitor cows for retained placentas and take corrective action if needed. I hope this explains the discussion better?
     
  8. Ronney

    Ronney Well-Known Member

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    Cows can retain their placenta for up to two weeks after birth - then it's time to take action.

    Over the years I've had cows trail their afterbirth around for up to 10 days before expelling it. It can get a bit ripe in warmer weather but so long as the cow is eating, cudding, producing milk and in generally good shape, I let nature take it's course and make no effort to interfere with it. I've only once had a vet out to deal with it - and then he told me it was ready to come away anyway :shrug: and she was a clean as a whistle inside.

    Keep an eye on her general well-being and if she starts to look depressed, then act.

    I'm sorry Savinggrace, I can't quite work out what your talking about either. The calf - or any baby - breaks away from the placenta as it's being born so the placenta never poses a risk to the young animal, as it comes out seperately and is generally eaten by the mother - the placenta that is, not the baby :p

    Cheers
    Ronnie
     
  9. wr

    wr Moderator Staff Member Supporter

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    You have good advice on this issue but I would like to add that retained placenta is generally caused by trace mineral deficiency. I would strongly suggest you research your cow's selenium intake and you'll likely find that she's needing more. Left unchanged can lead to greater problems.
     
  10. Up North

    Up North KS dairy farmers

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    WR - Good Call. You're dead right on with that observation.
     
  11. savinggrace

    savinggrace COO of manure management

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    Well, I guess what I was getting at-some really radical people leave the placenta attached to a baby. To keep the baby safe, they salt the placenta to keep the decomposition from harming the baby.

    So, my thought was, if there is a large portion of placenta actively hanging out of the cow, and it is smelly, if you can get near enough to her, salting the part totally out to cut down on her picking up nasty bacteria as she lays down, ect.

    Sorry if I wasn't clear, don't know if it would help, but I guess I was just thinking aloud.

    :)
     
  12. JeffNY

    JeffNY Seeking Type

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    Give her a shot of lute, it will help to clean her. Lute will abort a calf, and my thinking would be, it would "abort" the rest of that placenta. The stuff doesn't cost much, 5CC is what you give. It certainly won't hurt the animal.


    Jeff