Body score

Cattle problems.
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Body score

Post by Boomers » Sat May 23, 2020 2:00 pm

Hi,
I'm wondering how long does it take for a cow to go from a body score of 7 to a 1. Being fed but not enough. From sept to april in southwest weather in Idaho.
What are the long term effect for her. ? Shes around 3 years of age.
I'm following the vets feeding worming etc. But he never explained to me any of my questions on this.
No I did not do this to her. I picked her up in this condition. The times I checked on her she was her normal size. She was there to be with the bull. Obviously theres no calf to be born. The vet gave her a score of 1. She is now a 2. Will her muscles ever come back ? Her bones protrude out so far she had wounds. Hair patches missing. Weakness. Obvious hind end weakness. She still doesnt walk right. Shes feeling better though. Shes starting to hop around and gets excited now when I feed. I'm not a rancher as I only have her and her last calf. He was skinny but hes much better now. I'm concerned for her. It's not cost effective to bring her back to where she was, but she was my first full Angus, so shes special to me. The vet said it was malnutrition /starvation . No disease.
Thanks



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Re: Body score

Post by SBMF 2015 » Sat May 23, 2020 6:19 pm

Sounds like you need to cut your losses.
I rolled the dice on a set of three year old Angus cows with calves at their sides. They were bsc 2.5-3's, and they were cheep. Wormed the cows as soon as they got home. I weaned the calves early, and pushed the cows. They never did come out of it. I talked to my vet about them. She said that cattle that are malnourished for a long time can get fatty livers. Once that happens they can not absorb nutrients correctly.
I shipped them all a year later. Expensive lesson learned.
Never fear them, but ALWAYS respect them.

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Re: Body score

Post by 76 Bar » Sat May 23, 2020 7:11 pm

Time frame aside, otherwise healthy cattle who've gone from a BCS of 7 to 1 have been starved, intentionally or otherwise. There's a reason a BCS 1 is rarely encountered "in the field" as a living animal.
No I did not do this to her.
I beg to differ.

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Re: Body score

Post by Hpacres440p » Sat May 23, 2020 9:58 pm

If I drop a cow off to be bred with a BCS of 7, and pick her up 6 months later as a 1, someone better be writing me a check for starving my cow. That’s criminal if that is the only reason for that much weight loss.

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Re: Body score

Post by 76 Bar » Sun May 24, 2020 10:29 am

IMO this BCS link is superlative in many regards and especially because it uses "slick haired" drawings that incrementally portray scores 1 thru 9. Photos of live animals on the other hand can be deceptive due to hair coat, pose etc.
https://extension.psu.edu/body-conditio ... ement-tool
Short of immediate catastrophic circumstances beyond one's control there is absolutely no excuse for cattle to be a BCS 1 thru 3.

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Re: Body score

Post by TennesseeTuxedo » Sun May 24, 2020 11:05 am

76 Bar wrote:
Sun May 24, 2020 10:29 am
IMO this BCS link is superlative in many regards and especially because it uses "slick haired" drawings that incrementally portray scores 1 thru 9. Photos of live animals on the other hand can be deceptive due to hair coat, pose etc.
https://extension.psu.edu/body-conditio ... ement-tool
Short of immediate catastrophic circumstances beyond one's control there is absolutely no excuse for cattle to be a BCS 1 thru 3.
Great reference. Thanks
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Re: Body score

Post by 76 Bar » Sun May 24, 2020 11:13 am

I'm glad you appreciated it TT.

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Re: Body score

Post by TCRanch » Sun May 24, 2020 6:49 pm

76 Bar wrote:
Sun May 24, 2020 10:29 am
IMO this BCS link is superlative in many regards and especially because it uses "slick haired" drawings that incrementally portray scores 1 thru 9. Photos of live animals on the other hand can be deceptive due to hair coat, pose etc.
https://extension.psu.edu/body-conditio ... ement-tool
Short of immediate catastrophic circumstances beyond one's control there is absolutely no excuse for cattle to be a BCS 1 thru 3.
I may have a couple 8's in my herd :hide: But overall I'd say 5-6. And thanks for posting - always good to revisit BCS.

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Re: Body score

Post by Boomers » Mon May 25, 2020 1:52 am

I ask this because I am pursuing this. I'm be nice. The vet report said score 1 because of obvious weakness if weakness was not present he said she was a 2. Vet was just out and she scores a 2 to 3. Shes still not walking like she used to . But shes up moving and gets happy when she hears my quad. She knows dinner is served. I'm not giving up on her yet. She was my first pure angus and I used to be proud. The authorities are little help. My husband died and I moved. Since I moved to oregon and this happened in Idaho I get sent back and forth. I feel like a ping pong ball. I dont raise cattle except a couple here and there. So body score is new to me. I'm going off what the vet here said. I'm trying to post a picture of her before she went to the bull and now. It wont post pic. I'll keep trying. Maybe you can score for me? My vet is a horse vet . Not many cows here. He did admit to me.
I paid them $200 plus I gave them almost 4 tons of hay I felt wasnt good enough for my horses. So theres no reason for her to be this way . I checked on her often until last couple months before april. My husband died and I was moving. So was unable to visit her. They assured me she was fine. I picked her up at night. They had her in a trailer and loaded into my trailer . My dad dealt with that. So I didnt see her til she was unloaded. I cried. I was so devastated. The vet made it out 2 days later. She has a protein tub. Mineral block. Fresh water. Shes fed a half bale of grass hay and a half bale of alfalfa now. She was wormed. The vet said just feed her. Am I doing this right? I know horses in such poor condition cant handle a lot of food all of a sudden. The vet said she will be fine. Cows are hardy. Shes kept by the barn. Vet said I can put her on the pasture soon. She needs lots of groceries!. I'm trying to do right by her.

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Re: Body score

Post by Boomers » Mon May 25, 2020 3:06 am

Can I ask you keep your comments about whether you think I did this to her or not ,to yourself. I'm here trying to learn so I have a solid case to hold them accountable. So I have the knowledge to shut down any excuse. They are banking on my lack of knowledge to get out of any responsibility.
My crime in this is trusting people I thought were my friends. My husbands death threw a huge dampener in all areas of my life. If I had been able to intercept this I would have. The whole situation makes me sick. All animals in my care always come before myself. To say I did this without knowing me is not right. If I did this I would not be online looking for answers. I would be smart enough to shut up. This cow means the world to me and I want justice for her. Not my pocket book. For her. She did not deserve this. I want knowledge, I want to be prepared , so they are held accountable and realize they underestimated me. I need to be strong because they see me as weak and think they can bully me into dropping it. Knowledge will make me strong. Judge me if you want, just please keep it to yourself.
Thank you.

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Re: Body score

Post by Buck Randall » Mon May 25, 2020 8:13 am

Boomer, you need to make 5 posts total before the board will allow you to post pictures. Sorry for your loss and good luck.

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Re: Body score

Post by Silver » Mon May 25, 2020 9:57 am

She sounds like she was a downer cow for awhile. A cow that is down and can't get up can lose body condition like your cow at an amazing rate, and get the sores and missing hair patches.

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Re: Body score

Post by Katpau » Mon May 25, 2020 10:42 am

A normal healthy cow in body condition 7 would take more than a couple months to drop to a 1. Being down, as mentioned by another poster, would speed things up. Your description of her does make it sound like she was down for some time. You say you are new to this, so I do wonder if she was a 7 when you last saw her. A 7 is pretty fleshy. A 5 would probably describe the average cow in working condition. Perhaps she was closer to a 5? A cow could go from a 5 to a 2 pretty fast if she has nothing of value to eat or can't rise.

You left 4 tons of hay, which should have been enough for one cow if it was of sufficient quality, but you mention that it was not good enough for your horse, so I have to wonder if it was even good enough for the cow. If it was not tested, it is entirely possible that your hay may not have had the nutrient density required to sustain your cow. It is possible to starve a cow, even with food in front of her the whole time, if that food does not contain the nutrition she needs. The people that cared for your cow may have simply put out the hay you left, and not recognized she was starving in spite of being fed. I would hope a person would recognize that, but if they are inexperienced, and they just stopped by to throw out hay, I suppose they may not have realized it. I think there was more than starvation going on with her, since you mention her calf was not in as bad condition. They should have called you and told you she was losing weight, but without knowing their circumstances, I can't judge. $200 does not sound like much money for months of labor.

I would not leave her in the barn if she has access to good pasture. Spring grasses and clovers in Oregon will put on weight faster than your hay. I test all of my hay and feed my heifers good quality hay, some alfalfa and rye grass screening pellets over winter. They gained at about 1 to 1.5 pounds per day. I weighed them in late February at one year of age. I weighed them again in two months after the grass had grown and I was no longer feeding and some of them had gained over 3 pounds per day.

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Re: Body score

Post by 76 Bar » Mon May 25, 2020 11:31 am

I'm sorry you lost your husband and that your life has been further complicated by an out of state move. It would have been prudent to provide a bit of back story instead of leaping in with both feet on an internet discussion site you joined 2 days ago. Some of your comments regarding the cow in your last two posts remain difficult to ascertain/comprehend. If you didn't have a written agreement with the person(s) caring for your animal you're likely out of luck regarding any form of retribution. Your equine practitioner aside, it isn't rocket science to recognize when an animal has been compromised nutritionally to the point of eminent death. FWIW, cattle don't go from BCS 1 to 3 in the blink of an eye. :roll:

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Re: Body score

Post by Boomers » Mon May 25, 2020 1:14 pm

The body score could absolutely be wrong. I lack knowledge and an able to make mistakes. The vet admitted hes not a cow vet usually. Since he doesnt deal with many.
No the hay was not tested. I bought 1st cutting from my main grower a few months before it was cut. Luck had it when it was cut we recieved a lot of rain in days that made it impossible to dry between storms. It wasnt the growers fault mother nature decided to rain. So I stacked it in the back. Once it was baled. And bought from another grower to feed my animals.
It was $200 because I kept 20 of their cows on my pasture for free. For a year. I fed them in winter with hay they supplied. Their cows were returned healthy and they were informed when I noticed any bump lump or ? Out of the norm. I checked and counted daily. So breeding to their bull and my cow there was supposed to be free. But I did not like they hay so I gave it too them. Then when I picked her up they wanted $200 . Which I paid. They offered me $ 700 for her her last years steer. I turned it down because I was under the impression she was fat happy and preg . Plus a steer that will be a year . That was 3 cows for $700 in my mind. Plus shes my 1st full blood angus. My plans were to keep her. Keep her steer so she had a friend. Until I could buy another heifer. Then sell him. I cant eat him. Lol. I watched him be born. Lol. Plus shes always been very kind to me. Shes never stomped or shook her head or made me run for cover! She very easy to be around and she was raised on my property. I like a cow that doesnt make me run ! Or push me as I walk. Shes friendly but not over friendly. Anyway they have close to 40 cows. I helped them run them through the chutes. I put the bull back when they were out of town and he went for a walk through the neighborhood. There was never anytime I felt that my cow would be in any bad situation. I had never been given or seen a reason. Until I picked her up. I asked if they gave me the wrong cow. They insist this is my cow. Going off the pictures I have of my cow. This cow is similar but I question the white by her udders. But it could be because the weight loss it doesnt stick out as far now. They had a cow who had a traumatic birth. Unable to stand or walk. Eventually after months she did . She was in poor condition . I thought they gave me her. They insist this is my cow. So it leaves me to believe then... they knew she was in poor condition. Did not inform me or give me a chance to intercept. The knowingly withheld that from me .they grow hay also and they said they also bought hay. They let me go on and on about how excited I was about the upcoming baby. Since she was with the red bull this time. Not one mention. So they had plenty of chances to inform me. I was led to believe all was good. I'm also going to say since they know cows they would know she was falling in her condition. I cant not find a reason other than neglect or abuse. Which breaks my heart. I kick myself for trusting them.
I'm going to assume once shes back to herself in condition , that she will not be breedable? If I'm able to bring her back. She walks funny. She doesnt follow through with hind legs each step anymore. I dont know if that's because of the muscle wasting away or if she will forever be that way. My vet says time will tell. She show no signs of obvious pain. If she did I would put her down. I picked her up last april. Shes come a long way in that time. But I still cry and apologize to her everyday. I want them to at least admit they did her wrong. Right now they are attacking me calling me names but refuse to take any responsibility I'm getting bullied. So I'm preparing to throw out knowledge on how why long term effects etc. I refuse to be bullied and I refuse to allow them not to be held accountable. Authorities have little care about it . To them it's just a cow. So I'm taking them on also. Maybe just a cow, but shes my cow. She deserved to be fed and taken care of. That's why there are laws. They need to enforce them. So I'm preparing in that area also.

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