Uprooted Magnolia

Up and Down

Posted in Calving, Nature, Photography by leahyetter on March 14, 2012

Round and round. The circle of life continues.
I forget how stressful calving can be. I’ve only been at this, and mostly in the background, for 2 years but here in my third year I’m more involved. Everyone so far is doing great but our calf from the first heifer is struggling. She unfortunately is not able to mother her calf. She loves him, she hums to him, but her milk has blood in every quarter and it is making him very sick. So two nights ago we took him from her. Awful experience, but it was a necessary move to keep him alive. Patrick tubed him with colostrum that he had in the freezer and yesterday I tried to feed him milk through a bottle. He just wouldn’t suck and was completely uninterested. So Patrick had to basically sit on him and force feed him to get his belly full. I’ve never seen a calf not eat! I bottle fed a couple bum calves last year and they would back me into a corner sucking on that bottle! So this morning Patrick went down there and heard him bellowing loudly. Turns out he is hungry but because he did not start off sucking when he was born, he doesn’t suck the bottle very well. He’s special we’ve decided and have hopes that we’ve turned a corner today.

On a different note, Crop Ear made it through another winter!

©Leah Yetter Photographer

I’ve seen in her these past few evening by the river as we go check on the calves and cows. She’s part of our family and I’m always happy to see her when she visits.


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6 Responses

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  1. Sharyn Hutchens said, on March 14, 2012 at 8:24 pm

    Oh Leah, I’m so sorry about the little guy. We have run interference on many puppies, but I imagine a calf is much more difficult. For our little guys we do just what you have been doing — the colostrum, the tubing, the force-feeding — and usually give antibiotic (a penicillin) just in case there’s an infection. Please keep us posted on him. Has Mama got mastitis?

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    • leahyetter said, on March 14, 2012 at 9:16 pm

      That is what we are thinking Aunt Sharyn, and you know what? His momma got into the corral tonight where we had him and he sucked her out. We’ll see what happens tomorrow. We don’t know if we should keep them separated or throw him back in with her. I guess we’ll see if he’s okay in the morning but it seems like since he didn’t suck when he was born because it tasted bad or made him feel bad, maybe the blood has passed and it isn’t mastitis. She is a heifer and it could have been broken capillaries from the strain of birth. BUT all signs in reality point to mastitis. We’ll see. I’ll keep you posted.

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  2. Lenore Diane said, on March 14, 2012 at 9:03 pm

    Ugh, Leah. Please keep me posted. Such a hard life – physically and emotionally. I think I’ve said that before now. Happy to see Crop Ear! Great picture!

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    • leahyetter said, on March 14, 2012 at 9:21 pm

      Yeah, it’s so hard Lenore. I hope I can handle all this. Like I said before, it’s just the beginning. And my heart is so big and I’m so sensitive, I know it’s gonna be tough. But when it’s a hard day, I take pleasure and am thankful for the positive things. Like Crop Ear. The winters are so tough and the mountain lions love the taste of mule deer. So when they make it through the winter, it’s a nice celebration. 🙂

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  3. cravesadventure said, on March 14, 2012 at 9:27 pm

    Who’s Watching Who – ha!

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  4. pinkunderbelly said, on March 14, 2012 at 10:23 pm

    Oh my, I was stressed just reading this! Can’t imagine how hard it must be when you know & love those babies. I’m rooting for him and his mama.

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