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Old cow new calf question


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#1 Aaroncboo

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Posted 20 October 2019 - 05:03 PM

I have a 13 year old Hereford cow that hasn't gotten pregnant in 2 years even though there's a bull with her. So much to my surprise Friday night I walk out there and there's a little calf with her.. she wouldn't accept it at first and we have to put a halter on her and tie her to a post. But now she's accepted it but she doesn't give much milk... would you say take it as a bottle calf or try and supplement it or just let it be. I'd much rather the cow raise it but I would rather make it a bottle calf and have it do well over barely get what she needs from this one

#2 Farmerbrown2

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Posted 20 October 2019 - 05:22 PM

I had a cow like that once . What I did was left the calf with the cow but supplemented the calf with a bottle. It was a pain at first but after a week or so calf would run over drink bottle then go back to momma. I did have cow and calf penned up till he was trained though then out on pasture with the rest.
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#3 Tim/South

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Posted 20 October 2019 - 07:09 PM

Keep an eye on them. If the calf is growing and doing alright, let her raise it. The issue is going to be winter coming on and if she can take it through cold weather. The cow may have a hard time taking herself through winter with out a calf pulling on her. Let the calf tell you if it needs help.
In my experience, old Herfs have a hard time putting on weight once they begin to go down. Chances are her teeth are not up to the task.


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#4 Aaroncboo

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Posted 20 October 2019 - 09:41 PM

Ya just don't want to wait until it's to late. In my experience they go downhill fast and then to late...

#5 danwi

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Posted 20 October 2019 - 09:43 PM

You don't think the cows give much milk but if the calf keeps after the cow and sucks good the cow should come up a little on milk. The calf only needs a quart or so at a time as long as it goes to eat every chance it gets. Watch the calf for a few days some of them are like stealth calfs it is hard to see them eat. And those little beef calves running with their mothers will start nibbling on stuff in a week if they are hungry.


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#6 Tim/South

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Posted 21 October 2019 - 06:30 AM

Ya just don't want to wait until it's to late. In my experience they go downhill fast and then to late...

The most important part right now is that the mother produced colostrum. You will be able to tell pretty soon if the calf is getting enough milk. If it's sides begin to look sunk in then it is time to change gears.



#7 8350HiTech

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Posted 21 October 2019 - 09:03 AM

She’s 13, doesn’t breed regularly, and may not be giving milk. Outside of a situation where the cow is a family pet, I would find them both new homes. Sometimes people pay really stupid money for a beef bottle calf, enough that there isn’t much point in you feeding it yourself.
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#8 Aaroncboo

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Posted 21 October 2019 - 10:26 AM

We did tie her up and she was milking a little so we let the calf nurse until it didn't show any interest anymore and we did that 3 times so I'm sure shes gotten the colostrum. But as I was watching the calf was changing nipples alot kinda like she was looking for a better flow.

#9 Aaroncboo

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Posted 21 October 2019 - 10:26 AM

We did tie her up and she was milking a little so we let the calf nurse until it didn't show any interest anymore and we did that 3 times so I'm sure shes gotten the colostrum. But as I was watching the calf was changing nipples alot kinda like she was looking for a better flow.

#10 IHCman

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Posted 21 October 2019 - 11:14 AM

Sorry to be so critical but my first question is if she hasn't bred in 2 years why is she still there. Opens go for slaughter.

 

I agree with most though that you can try and leave the calf on the cow. She might come on with a little more milk as time goes by. You could supplement the calf with a bottle every day just to help him out until her milk comes. At her age though it might not come. Also if you do plan to sell her for slaughter you might want to just take the calf away and sell it or feed it so the cow stays in good shape till you sell her.


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#11 Aaroncboo

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Posted 21 October 2019 - 11:25 AM

No I don't think you're being critical. The cow has sentimental value. My grandpa always wanted herefords and could never afford them. He always bought Dairy calves and raised them up. He died when my mom was 15 so when I started with the cattle on the farm and everything else she went out and bought two herefords. Something my grandpa could never have. The other one died a couple years ago and this is the only one left. It's more of a pet to the family that lives with my cattle.
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#12 Tim/South

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Posted 21 October 2019 - 06:47 PM

I have 2 older cows that will die here. I understand.


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#13 danwi

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Posted 21 October 2019 - 10:37 PM

If you got some heifers out of her you can keep the line going then.


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#14 Aaroncboo

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Posted 23 October 2019 - 12:20 PM

Just an update. The calf nursed without the cow needing to be tied up but she kept switching teats to try and find one that milked and when I went up to check her she wasn't milking anymore. When I saw her nursing I was happy but the more I watched the more I questioned it. She was taking a bottle really well so I'm not to worried about it. She may just end up being a full bottle calf.
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#15 r82230

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Posted 23 October 2019 - 04:22 PM

She may just end up being a full bottle calf.

Or a half and half, with two 'moms'. Getting the best of two worlds even.

 

Larry



#16 skyrydr2

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Posted 29 October 2019 - 03:56 AM

Feed that calf especially if its a heifer! I only raise Herefords and have a momma that doesn't produce great volumes of milk but she gets the job done with out any interventions. I have had her 5 years now and she has had 5 calves and all have been great growers considering they are Herefords and grow kinda slow compaired to angus or Charolais but in their 2nd year is when they poor it on and grow like crazy. I like to ship them out at 30-36 months.
My bulls have always sold well for breeding stock as they have all been beautiful looking critters that get the job done!
Heifers usually need more groceries to grow faster so I would bottle feed yours, it also helps with making them friendlier. And petable . I have a 2year old that is a hemroid and will not let you touch her no how no way.. she may become hamburg if she doesn't breed soon!
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#17 Cowasaurus

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Posted 31 May 2020 - 06:45 PM

I would probably bring the cow and calf in and supplement while still letting the calf nurse. If it starts to show signs of weakness or malnutrition then I would separate and just bottle feed. Good luck!

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