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igor
1st December 2010, 10:04 AM
My cow calved on 7th September. Theoretically she should have cycled at least twice since then. I am having some difficulty picking when she is bulling as she has only goats for company. Apart from the obvious riding and standing to be ridden behaviour, which I am not seeing because there are no other cattle in the paddock with her, what should I be seeing?

Denneaux
1st December 2010, 10:38 AM
Tricky... increase in body heat, decrease in milk production, looking like she hasn't eaten (though the last one may be due to the fact that getting jumped on interrupts their eating). Should be interesting to hear other answers.

Sue
1st December 2010, 10:46 AM
Lots of mooing over 24 hours? Perhaps a mucus type discharge with fresh blood, wrapped around her tail. Restless walking around, annoying the goat, standing looking wistfully over the fence?
Jumping on her calf?

beedee
1st December 2010, 11:52 AM
more agitated, runs to the gate/fence... the tail signs as Sue sez, but that usually is THEN so organising the AI needs to be that evening or in 20 days time can become aggressive, towards other animals.... and yell across to the neighbours steer!

Isla
1st December 2010, 05:23 PM
A twinkle in her eye, a twitch of an ear ...

I'd not want to have to work out good insem times in an animal on her own and I'm pretty good at heat detection! I can do it when everyone else (bovine, I mean) is ignoring a hot cow, but she's still showing particular behaviour toward the others which is indicative. Maybe a cow would do the same with other species, but you'd probably need to be pretty savvy to notice it.

If you see blood, it's way too late, but look out for earlier signs 19-20 days later.

Jen - Featherston
1st December 2010, 07:58 PM
mooing and lots of it used to be the sign for my Bossy Boots, then when I took a good look at her, her vulva would be a little more swolen and sometimes a clear discharge too.

Ronney
1st December 2010, 10:25 PM
It can be extremely difficult to pick up a bulling cow when she is a lone cow. If your lucky, she may start to annoy the goats, she may stand at a fence bellowing at the cattle across the road. Any of the other signs such as mucous and blood, well it's too late.

I gave up years ago and even when I only had two cows, I kept a bull. He was much better at working it out than ever I would be[:0] I now have 9 milking cows and of the 5 that calved, 1 that slipped and the cow that died, I only saw 4 of them go to the bull! And I milk these cows twice a day so one would think I would see something positive at the time of actual heat.

Can you borrow/lease a bull if your not wanting a specific type of calf? It might be the safest bet if you want her back in calf again.

Cheers,
Ronnie

clarry
2nd December 2010, 12:28 PM
When you mate her is it be artificial or natural?
I imagine it be AI as if you had a bull to put her to at short notice you would have her there now.
A lone cow can be almost impossible to pick as she needs herd mates to display signs of being on heat even then the shy cow won't be observed.
Have a talk to good cow vet. They can provide a synchronisation programme & will check out that she is not a non cycler
Usually involves a pg shot & or cidr........works like treat her day 1... mate her on day 10

Be interested to know how you get on

cheers

igor
2nd December 2010, 12:42 PM
Thank you all for your responses.
I thought I saw a bloody discharge on the cow's tail once. My dad told me that this comes about two days after the end of standing heat so it would only give a clue as to the likely date of the next heat.
We had planned to AI as wifey is not keen to have a bull on the property, even for a couple of months. If I could run the cow with a bull I wouldn't have this problem.
We may have to resort to vet treatment as clarry has suggested.

clarry
2nd December 2010, 01:50 PM
concerned about the talk of blood seen during heat observation.
a clear mucus (if at all) is all that should be seen any discoloration means the cow is dirty inside from last calving

BLOOD/PUS KILLS SEMEN

poor ole cow only gives us such a small window every 21 days to get her incalf gotta make the most of the oppotunity

Denneaux
2nd December 2010, 02:11 PM
Good thinking Clarry! Alternatively you could also get a freezer beast and some tail paint

clarry
2nd December 2010, 03:12 PM
Alternatively you could also get a freezer beast and some tail paint

Great point Denneaux.........I figure there not enough room for more than 1 cow??

igor...........how did you get her incalf last year??

Isla
2nd December 2010, 04:27 PM
concerned about the talk of blood seen during heat observation.
a clear mucus (if at all) is all that should be seen any discoloration means the cow is dirty inside from last calving

BLOOD/PUS KILLS SEMEN

poor ole cow only gives us such a small window every 21 days to get her incalf gotta make the most of the oppotunityWe're not talking about blood during oestrus, but the normal blood which is often seen after ovulation. Usually 24-48 hours later.

clarry
2nd December 2010, 08:13 PM
but the normal blood which is often seen after ovulation. Usually 24-48 hours later.

Can't agree about any normal blood discharge in a healthly well fed cycling cow.
but observing signs 2 days after she ready to mate mayb not my strong point

hilldweller
2nd December 2010, 08:52 PM
Just noticed two of my cows with mucus on their tails, 6.5 and 7 weeks after calving. Have written it down. Might come in useful. New bull supposed to be arriving on Monday, truckies willing.

Isla
2nd December 2010, 09:10 PM
Can't agree about any normal blood discharge in a healthly well fed cycling cow.
but observing signs 2 days after she ready to mate mayb not my strong pointDo you mean that you disagree that a healthy well-fed cycling cow will have blood at some time?

Many, possibly most, cows and heifers will have from a tiny bit of blood which will rarely be seen unless you happen to look at the right moment, right through to what can look like quite a worrying amount! (I'm trying to find a photo I know I have somewhere of one such cow one summer with a little red pool behind her.) I've also seen a show of blood on one heat check which was entirely gone without trace two hours later, so it is not surprising that it is not always seen. The appearance of blood gives no indication of whether or not the cow has conceived, but if you see blood and you didn't see signs of heat, you're far too late to do anything about insemination!

6654
That's a pretty ordinary sort of amount I often see.

Ronney
2nd December 2010, 10:24 PM
Can't agree about any normal blood discharge in a healthly well fed cycling cow.
but observing signs 2 days after she ready to mate mayb not my strong point

Perhaps Isla should have phrased it as blood normally seen - would that have made it clearer:rolleyes:. Except that most people don't usually see it. Most often there is not a lot of blood involved and it doesn't hang around for long and is quite different to anything that may be associated with uterine or vaginal disease.

Cheers,
Ronnie

Kevin and Perlita Morgan
2nd December 2010, 10:46 PM
Hi lots of cows when they come into heat have a mucus discharge and this can be seen on each side of their rear end ,mucus will get on their tail and as they swish their tail from side to side you will notice that there are wet patches on each side of their rear end ,you can also check by opening the front of their vulva and if the colour is redish and moist ,this another sign that the cow is in heat ,as normally the colour is light pink
Cheers
Kevin

Isla
3rd December 2010, 07:38 AM
I find that the only time I see the fertile mucous is in cows which are actively jumping on other cows, so that it gets "tipped" or sqeezed out in the activity. And sometimes in a cow which hasn't been particularly active herself, I'll find a whole load of the mucous during insemination. Otherwise a hot cow can show no obvious physical signs at all - that would partly depend on the breed too. People with light-fleshed cattle do describe obvious vulval swelling, but I rarely see that in my black cattle.

hilldweller
3rd December 2010, 09:15 AM
Mine had just run up a very steep hillside when I spotted them last night - that might have done it LOL.

Isla
3rd December 2010, 09:57 AM
My closely watched insem cows are generally on the flats, so there is the possibility of any mucous remaining inside. :)

igor
3rd December 2010, 10:18 AM
She was in calf when we bought her. She had been running with her twin sister so no problem picking their heats.
Denneaux's suggestion to put her in with the beefy sounds like a good plan. Just will take a bit of organising as he (steer) is on our other block which is seperated from our house block by a main road. Just be a hassle bringing her across the road to the shed every day but might be the only way. Of course we could bring the beefy to the house block but there is a lot more grass where he is.

Isla
3rd December 2010, 10:45 AM
If there isn't a lot of grass where she is, your theoretical return to heat might be only that! They can take a while to return to oestrus unless they're in excellent condition on good feed. Some will do it in as little as three weeks, but many take nearer nine or ten - so they're pushing it to do another calf within the calendar year. That's why early lactation feeding is critical - all that milk, recovering from calving, return to fertility ...

igor
3rd December 2010, 11:35 AM
That's a good point too Isla. I thought she looked a bit on the light side and so did my dad (from two photographs) but MIL reckoned not. She's got more grass than she can eat where she is but with two big cattle in there instead of one they might get on top of it quite quickly if the weather turns dry. She gets a slab of lucerne at milking time each evening (I'm milking once a day only for about 8 litres) and the calf has been weaned.