Raising dairy calves

For the dairy folks and/or beef folks with questions about udders, milk and mastitis.
Ellie
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Re: Raising dairy calves

Postby Ellie » Sat May 14, 2011 8:02 pm

Why not get yourself a nurse cow? I milk a Jersey everyone morning, take two gallons for myself, and then turn her out with a Dexter heifer she is raising for me. The calf, fat, happy, grazing after nursing, and thriving is six months old and about to be weaned to hay and grain. What could be easier? And nothing is healthier for the calves than fresh mother's milk.
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Re: Raising dairy calves

Postby GMN » Sun May 22, 2011 6:17 am

This is one job I would pay someone to do, is raise the baby calves. I was doctoring one here for days, thought he was coming around, but yesterday it died. it was a small bull, and in my experience the small bulls have issues.It had diarrhea that would not stop no matter what meds it was given, then the fly bots set in and that led to other issues-not gonna mention here. Its sad when they die, but it happens-don't beat yourself up over it.
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Re: Raising dairy calves

Postby TexasBred » Sun May 22, 2011 3:08 pm

GMN wrote:This is one job I would pay someone to do, is raise the baby calves. I was doctoring one here for days, thought he was coming around, but yesterday it died. it was a small bull, and in my experience the small bulls have issues.It had diarrhea that would not stop no matter what meds it was given, then the fly bots set in and that led to other issues-not gonna mention here. Its sad when they die, but it happens-don't beat yourself up over it.

GMN I know what you mean. Wife always raised ours and was wonderful at it. If I had one it we wouldn't have had 10% of them live.
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Re: Raising dairy calves

Postby GMN » Mon May 23, 2011 5:34 am

I very seldon lose them,not saying I'm not good at it, but I don't enjoy bottle calves like other jobs on the farm, it is tedious, but I do it, because I have to.
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Re: Raising dairy calves

Postby TexasBred » Mon May 23, 2011 8:33 am

GMN wrote:I very seldon lose them,not saying I'm not good at it, but I don't enjoy bottle calves like other jobs on the farm, it is tedious, but I do it, because I have to.

When you enjoy something you usually tend to do it "right". That's the secret. You can't raise calves doing things half-a$$ed or you'll be lucky to save "half". I always considered it THE hardest job on the dairy.
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Re: Raising dairy calves

Postby GMN » Mon May 23, 2011 1:12 pm

TexasBred wrote:
GMN wrote:I very seldon lose them,not saying I'm not good at it, but I don't enjoy bottle calves like other jobs on the farm, it is tedious, but I do it, because I have to.

When you enjoy something you usually tend to do it "right". That's the secret. You can't raise calves doing things half-a$$ed or you'll be lucky to save "half". I always considered it THE hardest job on the dairy.



I hven't had a sick calf in over 2 years, raised alot of them over winter, and had no problems. My point is that the smaller calves, sometimes do have issues, and they are harder to raise up, no matter what you do. I like calves, but this job does get old, just saying I can see why people with huge herds, hire this job out, its time consuming.

Even when you enjoy something doesn't mean you dont get tired of it, ya know burnt out, I don't know of anyone who hasn't said they needed a break from milking or farming in general, its like any job, except when you are self employed the work needs to get done no matter what, i can't call in sick, like a townie can, and have any joe blow do the same job.
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Re: Raising dairy calves

Postby TexasBred » Tue May 24, 2011 4:01 pm

Oh my wife loved it but since we sold out she certainly hasn't missed it either. ;-)
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