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newborn bottle calf

Discussion in 'Other Pets & Livestock' started by birdbrain5, Sep 13, 2011.

  1. birdbrain5

    birdbrain5 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Aug 2, 2010
    hey everyone, i put up a post on backyardherds.com under the "birthing, weaning and raising young cows"
    im really in need of info and answers and i appreciate those who have replied, and i am hoping more will throw me some info soon too. rather than make a new post here im hoping some who may frequent this site more will go read it and maybe offer some info to my questions and concerns about the newborn calf i have. im a first timer so im pretty clueless and i want to stay ahead of things so she stays well!!
    thanks!! [​IMG]
     
  2. danischi24

    danischi24 Loves naked pets

    Aug 17, 2008
    Australia
    I'm gonna answer this here because I don't have an account on BYH. My job is raising hundreds of calves so I'm rather qualified to answer you.
    Colostrum is only needed for the first 24 hours. After that, it's just a waste. Don't make her drink water. She's only a baby & will only need milk for the next few days. I'll speak in liters because that's what I know. 2 liters of milk/milk replacer twice a day is what she should be getting. Her legs will straighten out in time, don't worry. Also, she will start to walk around in her own good time too. I don't usually bother making them stand unless something is wrong with them. The weak ones will get to it in their own good time. All you need to do for the next week is feed her twice a day. That's it. After that, put in a bucket of water & one of calf starter. It doesn't matter if she doesn't eat or drink them, she will eventually after a few weeks but just have them there free choice from a week old. If you haven't put iodine on her navel, do so. It's very important. Watch to make sure that she doesn't get a navel infection. Then all you have to worry about is diarrhea that may or may not come at just under 2 weeks. If she gets it, keep her very well hydrated with electrolytes.. 8+ liters a day on top of any milk you might get into her & give something like kaolin too.
    She doesn't need a friend. You are her mom & she wont care about anything else. She will just suck on a lamb & might hurt it. Calves have this crazy need to suck on anything & everything & do get rough. Pneumonia signs are droopy, sad looking ears, coughing after getting up or running & heaving sides but this shouldn't occur until several weeks old if ever. Any other questions, just PM me & I'll be happy to help. I had 10 births within 2 days this week. 3 sets of twins & four singles [​IMG]
     
  3. Katy

    Katy Flock Mistress

    I answered you over on BYH.
     
  4. Duramaxgirl

    Duramaxgirl Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Feb 12, 2010
    Idaho
    I'll I can offer is don't believe what you read on the net about weaning them under 12 weeks. Keep that baby on the bottle till at least 16 weeks. I'm super new to cows/calves, but you can do it! Good luck and post a picture!
     
    Last edited: Sep 13, 2011
  5. arabianequine

    arabianequine Chillin' With My Peeps

    Apr 4, 2010
    I have raised numerous calves and so has my friend he is an old timer. He taught me. We wean at 60-75 days.

    We started feeding grain on day after 3 days. We feed 2 quarts of milk re-placer am and pm. If you have a calf that will drink/suck more or really hot out you can reduce your re-placer in the other two feedings to like 6 oz and ad what is left over from those two feedings to a middle bottle. You don't want to give more milk replacer....just more water. More milk re-placer will give them diarrhea and can loose them real quick. We start offering hay at a week old not much....and more as they get older and eat it to reduce waste.

    When we wean typically we just cut out the am bottle all together. Once we start giving grain they get free choice till about 6 months old and always free choice hay once they start eating it. Before totally weaning make sure they are eating enough hay on their own....and grain if you are gonna give grain. Some grain them at the end.
     
  6. birdbrain5

    birdbrain5 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Aug 2, 2010
    Quote:ok so rather than open the other bag of the colostrum i will just give her the milk replacer for her next feeding. the stuff i bought is called Unimilk, so its for other species too. it has directions on the back for each species so it will tell me specifically for calves. is this ok?

    i am not too bright when comparing liters/pints/quarts and whatnot. my nursing bottle is measured in 4 pints/2 quarts. when you say she should get 2 liters at a feeding, how much is that in comparisson to pints/quarts? im embarassed to ask that lol but i dont know.

    she went to the water herself, she didnt drink much. probably just played with it. is it ok to leave it for her or should i take it out?

    should i start her on electrolytes now since i noticed her stool to be a little mushy and tan/yellow and smelly? could this be scours already? i called the man i got her from and explained it to him and he said she should be fine, that is kind of normal right now... ?
     
  7. danischi24

    danischi24 Loves naked pets

    Aug 17, 2008
    Australia
    You can give her the colostrum if you have it already, better than to waste it. It just wont make a difference after 24 hours because the walls of the stomach stop absorbing the immunoglobulin straight into the blood & digestion instead has to occur for things to get into the blood. It might coat the walls & stop bacteria being absorbed though that's always been a debatable point.
    If the above made no sense to you, don't worry. All you need to know is that you should give colostrum as soon as possible after birth & past 24 hours, it doesn't have the needed effect anymore though it wont do harm. Relax though, it's pathetically easy to raise these guys (unless you over think it in which case, you will worry yourself sick & make a spoiled fussy calf). Unless her poop turns to water, she's fine. Liters & quarts is the same thing according to google. If you want to do 3 feedings a day, give 2 quarts morning, 1 quart midday & 2 quarts night. Otherwise, 2 quarts, morning & evening. If she gets fussy towards the end of the bottle, only give her 1 or 1 & a half quarts until her appetite goes up. I use the replacer at just under 4.5 ounces to a quart of water. One ounce is 28.3 grams & I give 125 grams so I hope I did the calculation right. It depends on your replacer though. It should say how much on the bag. Having water & calf starter in now is just fine. Make sure that she doesn't get to the water for an hour after drinking her milk though (just remove it) or she might get a sore stomach. Often my calves try to gorge themselves on the water after I remove their milk buckets & it's not good for them. They have this desperate need to suck things & the urge gets very strong for about 10 minutes after each feeding.
    As I said, all you need to do is feed her twice a day & watch her navel. If you want to spend time giving her lovies, that's extra [​IMG]
    Any diarrhea before about 8 days old is food based & should pass quickly. The cryposporidium diarrhea is the one to watch out for but with her coming from beef cattle & being an only calf at your place, you could skip that entirely & it's no big deal anyway. All of my calves get it due to high density housing & I've never lost one. Diarrhea is hard to mistake. She will pee out her butt [​IMG]
     
  8. arabianequine

    arabianequine Chillin' With My Peeps

    Apr 4, 2010
    I recommend using the 20/20 milk replacer. Actually a litter is a bit more then a then a quart but just by a few ounces between 2 of each, not to worry they should drink it up. I put 8-10oz of 20/20 milk replacer in a 2 quart bottle and top off with water.

    Yeah you can't miss the diarrhea and probably won't eat hardly anything if at all.

    I hardly ever do 3 bottles a day. When I do it is either cause they have scours, heat is really high, or they are dehydrated.

    Also in your bag of milk replacer there is usually a cup....that has ounces on it. You have to dig for it lol. It is always at the opposite end from where you opened the bag to. I use this cup at the 10 ounce mark with 2 quarts water. I do this am and pm.
     
    Last edited: Sep 13, 2011
  9. birdbrain5

    birdbrain5 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Aug 2, 2010
    phew i feel much better. i will try to relax about it all and just keep it simple. i guess i will give her that pouch of colostrum just to use it then. the one pouch is mixed with a quart and a half of water so i guess i will make that for one feeding. before i was halfing it and it make about a quart.

    it looks to me like he had put something on her navel, it looked like it had dark green or blue something on it. i would imagine he would do that hes been raising cows forever and a day, but should i maybe put some iodine on it again? im not sure i have any. could alcohol work, or does it need to be the iodine? also, what is a sign of trouble with her navel?

    thanks so much for all the help i really appreciate you guys taking the time to reply here [​IMG]
     
  10. danischi24

    danischi24 Loves naked pets

    Aug 17, 2008
    Australia
    If he put something on her navel, she will be fine. If it get infected, the stump where her stomach is connected will swell & feel like a ball, just less than tennis ball sized. Wait a day or two before checking as it will be drying now. Yeah, don't stress. They are pretty hardy creatures. Another tip is to always feed at the same time, the same consistency & the same temperature. Temp needs to be measured, not just warm to your hand. 102F in summer & 104 in winter. It should never be less than 98 or more than 106. Haha, I'm having fun doing all these conversions.
     

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