Help with a Highland Calf

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7 months 4 weeks ago #556444 by LongRidge
Replied by LongRidge on topic Help with a Highland Calf
Max2 .... theoretically (yeah, right) , you should not mix solids with liquids in a young ruminant. Solids get digested in the rumen and liquids in the abomasum. The rumen is a fermentation vat with lots of microbes in it to turn the solids into components. Milk has sugar in it, so if milk gets into the rumen the bugs can have a huge party and cause indigestion and death. For milk to be partially digested in the abomasum it must be curdled with rennin, so putting just a taste of powder into a liquid risks that curdling will not occur. This means that although the calf/lamb/kid might get a taste for milk (which is good), the milk itself will not be of much use energy-wise.
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7 months 3 weeks ago #556464 by JennyE
Replied by JennyE on topic Help with a Highland Calf
It’s with a very heavy heart to say our little Henry didn’t make it and we had to make the horrible but merciful decision to let him go. RIP Henry. :(

Thanks heaps to everyone who offered advice and suggestions.

Jenny

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7 months 3 weeks ago #556465 by Stikkibeek
Sorry to hear that. Always a big hole left behind when you have invested such a lot of time into such a cute one.

It is worth investing in a tube feeder for the future as it's so important for them to have milk and if that's the only way to get it into them, it certainly helps. We did that for our little caesarian calf which was so groggy from anesthetic, he would never have fed with his tongue dangling out. In our case, we also put a bucket of colostrum powder into him as he couldn't suck his mum.

If you never need to use it, then that's a blessing, but so important to have on hand, and very useful to give electrolytes if calf scours becomes an issue.

Did you know, that what you thought I said, was not what I meant :S
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7 months 3 weeks ago #556467 by JennyE
Replied by JennyE on topic Help with a Highland Calf
Thanks Stikkibeek

Yes, we did tube him for a week when he first came in. He got too strong and fought us and we were worried about hurting him. He was bucket feeding for a little while then went off it and that was really the beginning of the end.

Thanks again

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7 months 3 weeks ago #556471 by LongRidge
Replied by LongRidge on topic Help with a Highland Calf
There is no need to worry about hurting during a tube feed if you are careful. The damage is done the first time that the tube goes past the valve into the abomasum :-(. We tube fed a goat orphan for about 6 weeks before she learnt to suck. One day she sucked the tube, and never needed tubing again. With a calf it does need two people, but calves can have much bigger feeds than lambs and kids, so twice daily is often enough. And the milk can be poured in as fast as you can, because there is no risk of choking.
We don't mate our sheep and goats any longer because of the number of deaths we have of the mothers and the offspring. So we are making our fortune from wool now.

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7 months 3 weeks ago #556472 by terralee
Replied by terralee on topic Help with a Highland Calf
So sorry for the loss ...Henry was too cute for this world ...he is no longer struggling and you can feel at peace with his passing in knowing you did everything possible for him :(

Leonie & Zoo!!! :silly: :woohoo:
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7 months 3 weeks ago #556473 by max2
Replied by max2 on topic Help with a Highland Calf
So sorry to read that Jenny. Sending Cyber hugs x
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