…has another calf?
A quick recap of yesterday’s fiasco:
Marcel checked on the Mama.
I went to move the cows to a fresh paddock.
Marcel started whistling, yelling, waving.
I knew something was wrong.
Mama cow had a hoof coming out her rear.
Yes, I said a hoof.
The hoof was upside-down.
Marcel inserted his arm.
He couldn’t find the other foot.
I inserted my arm.
I couldn’t find the other foot.
I called the vet.
“The mother cow is having another calf.”
“There is only one hoof presenting and it’s breech.”
“We can’t find the other foot.”
Vet said, “I’ll find it.”
Mother cow is lying head outstretched.
Mother cow is moaning.
Mother cow is breathing abnormally.
Vet arrives, gloves up, inserts arm.
Says, “This is going to be a disaster.”
Vet pushes calf back in.
Vet works for about 10 minutes finding other hoof.
Vet pulls other hoof out.
He hooks it to the calf-puller: a pulley system used for emergencies.
I drive the tractor close to mama cow.
Marcel hooks pulley to tractor and starts cranking.
Marcel pulls dead calf out.
It was a girl.
Mama cow looks relieved.
Mama cow sits upright again.
Mama cow is all swollen on the inside.
I run home and get the antibiotics in my fridge.
Yes, there is a place for antibiotics and livestock.
This is it.
Marcel gave her 2 large injections, 50 ml total.
Mama cow drinks water and eats a little hay.
I’m stuck with the nagging thought that we failed this mama and the poor dead heifer calf. Did we think she could have twins in there? Actually, yes we did. Did we check for a twin after the first heifer was born. Actually, yes we did. But we only stuck our arm in up to the forearm. We should’ve stuck our arm in up to our shoulder.
The vet said the calf died about 5 minutes after the first one was born. We have learned a very costly lesson. Again.
This morning the mother cow is sitting upright again.
She is trying to stand.
She is one tough mama.
This afternoon we’re going to try the hip lifter.
Basically it’s a big clamp.
That you hook to her hip bones.
And lift her with the tractor.
To see if she can put weight on her back legs.