Wednesday, March 7, 2012

Wild Cow Milking

Well, this may be misleading..... It's not the excitement of a wild cow milking in a ranch rodeo, as we utilized a squeeze chute. However, we need more milk than what is produced through a wild cow milking in a ranch rodeo! Indeed all you homesteaders are probably accustom to milking a cow, but on our ranch we rarely bring in the black Angus for a milking and sometimes (but not this case) they can be really wild!

Meet our heifer, she recently gave birth to a larger calf that had to be pulled. Sometimes when a rancher has a small first-calf heifer with a large calf, the birth is difficult and complicated. During birth, her calf was so constrained that the pressure on its lungs made breathing difficult. Due to this, the calf suffered some oxygen deprivation and is slow coming around to instincts such as nursing. While sometimes a good dose of colostrum (I call it genius juice) can make a world of difference, it doesn't always do the trick.Since our calf is not nursing we have to feed her milk by putting a tube down her throat. While we can use a milk replacer, if we don't milk the cow she will go dry and when the calf is strong enough to nurse on its own, she won't have milk. I'm sure most homesteaders are familiar with this concept!

I thought I'd share my little story and let readers know that we deal with a lot of issues concerning calving and raising little calves. I'm open for questions people may have about calves and will do my best to answer them!

Oh, and my ranch can now be "liked" and followed on Facebook, just search "69 Ranch" or just click this link: http://www.facebook.com/pages/69-Ranch/231277280290816

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