New to cattle and have a jersey bottle calf

For the dairy folks and/or beef folks with questions about udders, milk and mastitis.
Moody
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New to cattle and have a jersey bottle calf

Postby Moody » Fri Feb 27, 2015 12:08 am

I got her from a dairy close by. They are switching to beef and selling 4 young heifers. I took a 3-4 week old one that was eating grain (the others were younger). I could not replicate his grain, he got it from a local feed store. It was 10-12% protein but he told me to get creep feed. That is large pellets so I got calf manna. He told me to feed her 2 pints (not 2 quarts) twice daily. He gave me a couple of gallons of raw jersey milk to help transition to milk replacer. I finally found non medicated milk based replacer but only after starting the transition with Unimilk, but now we are on the milk based one. He also said to put 1 oz of corid in with her milk once a day as 21 day cocci prevention. She gets a fresh bucket of water every day and the grain replaced every day. (I toss the leftover that she hasn't eaten to the dexter we also got recently and donkeys. Hopefully that isn't bad for them). She stays in a 8 x16 stall. She eats well and bumps me with her head looking for more, I guess, as I clean her bedding out once daily. I just got some clean straw (she eats some) but had been using goat berry speckled leftover Sudan. It was dry but not the cleanest. There is also some alfalfa nearby that she is nibbling through the fence.

She had a thick pudding plop when I got her but for the past 2-3 days (I got her Saturday, today is Thursday) it has been pretty runny. I started electrolytes right off the bat the day I got her trying to ensure any stress and digestion issues could be lessened by hydration. Also I knew our weather was turning frigid cold and I wanted to lessen that stress as well. I give 1-1.5 quarts of that a day but it is not always the same brand. I have not pulled the milk feedings since I'm not even sure it is actually scours....I know I'm not over feeding at 2 pints per feeding. Tomorrow starts the first feeding of all milk replacer since I ran out of fresh raw jersey milk.

I have looked up pics of scours. Hers is still brown, not green or light colored so it could just be the change of feed, not full blown diarrhea? The electrolytes I have been using have no gelling agents, just electrolytes. I have not taken temp, she is very active. So I tend to think her temp is fine. I let her out of the stall and she ran around either from excitement or a stressed reaction so I haven't let her out again.

This is my first bottle calf. The dexter is a yearling we just got a couple of months ago. She is another post :)

Should I treat any runny stools like scours and use the scour and pneumonia treatment milk replacer? I believe it makes 2 quarts and to feed solely this for 7-14 days. I don't have sav a calf. It's called calf medic. Or I have arrest which is a re hydrant for scouring calves with a gelling agent. Her nose seems moist but not runny, like I said she is active, although I see her laying down more often now (I assumed since she is feeling more at home) and she eats well.

To keep her warm in a 3 sided run in barn, we have coastal bales stacked two high covered with some plywood. She is out of the wind and any dampness. She could nibble on it though and I don't think I should be offering hay until she weans at around 2-3 months old. This is what I have for shelter though.

I will see if I can post a pic tomorrow morning so you can see her body condition and her eyes.

I have read so much about calves dying and if the owner only knew to do this or that, it could have been saved. I'm reading the forum posts. So much great info and experience. Brand new to this forum. Someone on another forum recommended you folks.
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Re: New to cattle and have a jersey bottle calf

Postby Luca Brasi » Fri Feb 27, 2015 6:38 am

Way too many changes for a calf that is already under stress from a move and the change from milk to replacer. Stop changing grain, replacer and even electrolytes.
Why would you be afraid to use medicated replacer, yet add corid?? That is not to suggest that you should change replacers again. You don't say how much milk/replacer she is getting total. That could be an issue as well.
Allow her to eat hay, especially if she is eating the bedding. It may or may not be part of your problem, but use clean bedding that has not been contaminated with other animal waste. That's just a basic concept of good husbandry.
Her temperature may or may not be normal, but point of fact; you cannot tell for sure without measuring it, no matter what you think, wish or assume. The best medical care comes from relying on facts, not guesses.
It is never OK to allow a calf to come in contact with you with it's head. It is not a puppy or a kitty, and it won't be small and "cute" forever. It will lead to some dangerous situations as it grows, especially with a Jersey of all things.
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Moody
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Re: New to cattle and have a jersey bottle calf

Postby Moody » Fri Feb 27, 2015 7:58 am

I figured electrolytes didn't matter. I know milk replacer does. She gets a total of 2 quarts since he said 2 pints twice a day.

Actually I got the creep feed like the seller said but it looked big so I never gave it, just the calf manna since it is smaller pieces like what the seller was giving. I asked him what he was using so I could use it and he just me ones getting it from a local feed store. It was a bit lower in protein than most recommend and just to get creep feed. Or sweet feed. Didn't point me to the feed store, nor act like it would be a big deal. He said she was eating some, he never indicated I should replicate it. As a matter of fact I asked for jersey milk to ease the transition to milk replacer. He did not offer.

Every internet source I saw recommended milk protein non medicated milk replacer. Milk protein makes sense since cows don't come from soy and non medicated makes since sense because I don't want to medicate an animal that is not sick. The corid was specifically advised though by the seller. I tried to do what the seller suggested because he was the actual person with cows advising me. Not internet info.

Straw is 5.50 a bale. I can imagine it takes no time to go through a bale esp when changing it every day. It seems silly to pay more for bedding than feed. I have seen cows step and lay in their own feces. A random goat berry didn't that stayed during moving into her stall seemed like no problem.
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Moody
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Re: New to cattle and have a jersey bottle calf

Postby Moody » Fri Feb 27, 2015 9:04 am

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Re: New to cattle and have a jersey bottle calf

Postby Moody » Fri Feb 27, 2015 12:36 pm

Also It is 27 degrees and snowing. A couple of days ago it was 50 degrees. That was preceded by 2 days that were in the 20's day and night so not the best weather for me to have a bottle calf for the first time.

Should I add 2 cups or so milk at lunch as well as the separate electrolytes? I know 27 isn't that cold for her I and she does have a dry space that is a bit warmer since it is insulated by hay and enclosed on the top so her body heat warms it just a tad in there. I only gave the two milk feedings the other days it got so cold but I feel like 2 quarts total a day isn't enough for her age (from what I have been reading). I will just give a couple of pints of electrolytes if nobody chimes in with " yes give her extra milk with at noon in addition to what she had this morning and what she will receive tonight".

Her stool was still runny this morning but had some thicker on top. You probably don't want to see a pic but if you do, here is the link.


http://i1301.photobucket.com/albums/ag1 ... wntyid.jpg
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Re: New to cattle and have a jersey bottle calf

Postby branguscowgirl » Fri Feb 27, 2015 4:23 pm

Calf Manna will give them the runs! It is only a feed additive, not a complete ration.
Luca is right that she needs some hay to nibble on and that it sounds like a lot of changes. (So many that I could not follow and keep it all straight.)
I do not know a lot about bottle babies, but mine nursing the cow can't handle much of the calf manna.
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Re: New to cattle and have a jersey bottle calf

Postby Moody » Fri Feb 27, 2015 5:39 pm

Ahh I see. The Unimilk told me to offer its product, calf manna

My dumor milk bag says to do dumor calf starter.

I'm snowed in today. Texas shuts down with 2-3 inches of snow, you know. Good news is her stools have thickened to a thick pudding today :)

I went out to give electrolytes at noon and she was eating something. I have the calf manna and i give a small handful of the creep this morning. She eats the creep. Not much manna.

So I have no access to a feed store right now. I checked the local feed store yesterday and they had nothing called calf starter. Something called calf developer and sweet feed. I need to go to TSC but can't now because of weather. I will find some calf starter and start that but you all have mentioned that I keep trying too many different things so maybe I should just stick with the manna and creep mix for a bit?
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Re: New to cattle and have a jersey bottle calf

Postby chippie » Fri Feb 27, 2015 7:18 pm

I didn't read all of the replies.
Do not feed cattle or calf feed to your donkeys. It can make them very sick. Most cattle feed contains ingredients that are toxic to equines.
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Luca Brasi
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Re: New to cattle and have a jersey bottle calf

Postby Luca Brasi » Fri Feb 27, 2015 8:55 pm

I don't have a lot of experience wih TSC products, but they are designed for and marketed to the rather unsophisticated backyard and hobby crowd rather than serious, knowledgeable producers. I can't imagine raising livestock and not having access to a feed store, although I guess TSC at least resembles the definition of one, such as it is.

You seem to be getting information from several sources and randomly mixing and matching which bits of info you want to follow from each, based as much on convenience as anything else. It's also incredibly difficult to follow you, so I just wish you and your calf all the best.
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Re: New to cattle and have a jersey bottle calf

Postby chippie » Sat Feb 28, 2015 7:36 am

TSC carries national brands such as Purina and Nutrena.
I would suggest buying either of those two brands and steer clear of the Dumor or Producers brands. They are not worth the money. The price is cheap for a reason.
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Moody
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Re: New to cattle and have a jersey bottle calf

Postby Moody » Sat Feb 28, 2015 8:02 am

Thank you for all the replies. I really appreciate any help.

Part of my problem is lack of experience and lack of a knowledgable person in my areas who could tell me which feed, which milk replacer and signs of illness. When you look things up online, you can find so much info that can be flat out wrong.

If I looked up online how to care for a dog, I would find that it's amazing my dogs make it to 15 years of age. But I was raised with dogs and I don't question everything I do with them.


My calf seems to be doing well, now
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Re: New to cattle and have a jersey bottle calf

Postby ANAZAZI » Sat Feb 28, 2015 9:10 am

Luca Brasi wrote:It is never OK to allow a calf to come in contact with you with it's head. It is not a puppy or a kitty, and it won't be small and "cute" forever. It will lead to some dangerous situations as it grows, especially with a Jersey of all things.


I think the OP is referring to the calf bumping with its nose/muzzle to get more milk, a typical behaviour for any vital calf. I hardly think we are dealing with any form of goring motion or agression in any way.
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Luca Brasi
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Re: New to cattle and have a jersey bottle calf

Postby Luca Brasi » Sat Feb 28, 2015 2:57 pm

ANAZAZI wrote:
Luca Brasi wrote:It is never OK to allow a calf to come in contact with you with it's head. It is not a puppy or a kitty, and it won't be small and "cute" forever. It will lead to some dangerous situations as it grows, especially with a Jersey of all things.


I think the OP is referring to the calf bumping with its nose/muzzle to get more milk, a typical behaviour for any vital calf. I hardly think we are dealing with any form of goring motion or agression in any way.



In rereading it I can see that now. Was too caught up in all of the other issues, while trying to understand the mentality behind the decision making process so far.
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Re: New to cattle and have a jersey bottle calf

Postby Canesisters » Thu Apr 16, 2015 8:15 am

So how is that baby coming along???
Did things clear up??
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Moody
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Re: New to cattle and have a jersey bottle calf

Postby Moody » Fri Feb 12, 2016 3:20 pm

My calf is now one year old. I wish I had gotten the other three the dairy man offered me!

She's a little taller than my dexter heifer. She leads okay. She's friendly and I think will be a great home milk cow.


Now I'm scouring the internet looking for timeframes for the worming/testing/breeding.

I plan on AI around July for a spring calving.
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