Thursday, February 19, 2009

I'm back!

One of this years first calves! And he is a little doll!
This is momma!
I've been gone so long! I'll have so much updating to do on everyone! I got TONS of emails and comments that I havent replied to, so I'll try to get caught up over the next few days. I probably wont be able to reply to each comment so I'll just say this...thanks guys for checking on me and your lovely comments!
I'll answer your emails later guys!
I have been lucky to have wifi access so I have been able to stop in by and by. I'm glad this nasty weather is gone....yesterday was 58 degrees and today I woke up to 26 degrees slapping me in the face! What a rude awakening! LOL
Okay so my blog is about farm life...the good the bad and the ugly...sometimes its a mixture of all.
Tuesday was a very unsettling day for me. I'm doing a separate post about that morning after this on a special topic.
But to put the day in a nut shell.......I wish it had never happened!
We began getting calves 6 days ago. We have a count tonight of 5 live births, 1 still birth, and 1 in the process of calving as I type. (I'm running out soon so we can go check on her)
Yes you read right, one still birth.
So I'm going to show and describe this incident.....I'm warning you now...if the sight of dead animals, or gross things make you sick...just go on and skip this post and go to the next. I have pictures included, not for the gore factor but for a learning experience.
Terrible Tuesday (as it is now referred too by me) started out with a flat tire on the trailer when we went to take the rest of last years calves to the sale barn, patched and promptly shredded half way there. But before we even left the house, we found a heifer (which is a 1st and 2nd year calving cow) trying to calve with her back downhill. Now cows are pretty athletic....that can be proven if you try to walk up to one of its little calves! They can jump and practically look like they are flying at you! LOL But when I cow gets her back downhill, feet uphill, they CAN NOT get up. Why? The way a cow stands prevents them from getting their footing or body rolled around when in this position. So this little heifer (who for a few days seemed like she was going to calve, acted a little sickly even)was trying to calve and if left there within 15 - 20 minutes would bloat and then die. The bloat is caused by the gases in their rumin not being able to be expelled or passed through the body. They can die within minutes if not found. We rushed to her, and saw an absolutely HUGE calf with only his muzzle and feet sticking out and the poor heifer flailing around everywhere. We pulled the calf, which is where you take some chains around each hoof, they are attached to a pulley- like pole and they are cranked tighter and tighter until it pulls the baby right on out.
Well did I say he was HUGE? OMG He was very big, no way momma could have had him even if she wasnt downhill! I pulled the bag from his face, and cleaned out his nose, and nothing. His head was REALLY swollen, and trying to "jar" him into breathing gave him a few kicks. Thats when we smelled him. Poor guy had died in the womb about 24 hours before she calved. No wonder she was sickly acting. Norm pulled her around and up on her feet and of course, things got worse...she prolapsed. Prolapse in case you arent aware is when the Uterus pulls free and falls through the cervix, or pelvic bone. So this poor sick heifer, who just lost her baby, sicker than a dog, been stuck for about 30 minutes, now had this happen.
Well Dr. Mark came out and sewed her back up, and after about 24 hours she was up and walking around and eating. Now she has to be sold, every time she calves she will prolapse. But at least she is alive.
So here are a few of the shots I took of the whole ordeal. I purposely didn't put the real Gorey pictures, I figured they were a little much. But here you will get the idea.
The day just wasnt a good one at all. In fact this week has been terrible. But I'm here and talking to you now! So there is a bright spot after all! ;-)
Well I'm going to prepare for my next's a hard one for me...and you'll understand when you read.
So to end on a good note.....we now have a full carton of eggs from Pepper! When my daughter gets home this weekend, we shall all have eggs for breakfast! I'm excited! And Lisa.....I read about your hen, Honey I too didn't think I could love a chicken.....but then again when I thought that, I'd never had a chicken...therefore I knew nothing! LOL Chickens are great and lovable and I'm sorry to hear about yours!!!!!!!!
Spinning yards....I assume that Angus is up and over scours???? I will post up that homemade scours remedy and what to do if a calf gets scours in another post tonight. Right now I've got to go check on a cow! Wish her luck!


  1. Man that poor cow! She had a major prolapse! I am so glad you showed pictures I wanted to see sooo bad! LOL I know non farm folk would get grossed out over it but us farm folk wanna see the gore!!!! LOL

    I am wondering what happened to make the calf die? Could it be maybe something went wrong with her uterus before he was born? MAybe the placenta detached the day before so the calf wasnt getting what he needed? I am just fascinated here and wondering what went wrong. Does that mama seem depressed at all since her baby was born? I have always wondered how animals react to stillbirths. I know all to well what humans do and how we react, but I wonder if animals have that same feeling of horrible loss as we do. I truly hope she dont. its an awful feeling. i hope mama cow is OK thru this. What a traumatic thing to go thru! Give her a pat on the back for me, she is one heck of a lady!

  2. Thanks for the kind words, my friend. We try so hard to take good care of the animals under our watch, it's painful to see them get hurt or die. :(

    I'm so sorry about the loss of that calf and the pain and trouble that poor Mama caow went through, too. Thanks for sharing the pics. They don't bother me either, except for the discomfort of the animal. I have all the same questions that Auroras Garden has, too.

    And when you sell this cow, who will buy her if she can't produce babies...or milk? Will she be a pet or meat?

    Life on a farm, sometimes, joyful, sometimes bittersweet but never boring.



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