Mastitis Cow with calf

For the dairy folks and/or beef folks with questions about udders, milk and mastitis.
MikeJoel
Cowhand
Cowhand
Posts: 176
Joined: Tue Apr 04, 2006 9:41 am
Location: Down East Maine
Contact:

Mastitis Cow with calf

Postby MikeJoel » Wed May 03, 2006 4:32 pm

The mastitis seems to have been clearing up.
The milk returned about two weeks ago to a normal look but the udder still had an inner hard feel to it (like a bag with a brick in it).

Now the udder is softening and the hardness seems to be shrinking.

*Plugging ears* No we didn't treat with a drug yet...... *unplugging ears*

The calf was left on since it seemed to only be nursing from the two front teats. The one on the left I had suspected of a possible mastitis, but it never showed any real signs of it, so I dont know how much of the rear teat's hardness was effecting how I interpreted the front.
I am supposed to be getting the CMT in the mail tomorrow (turns out there was nowhere out here to get it).

Now my question is this.
The mastitis seems to be clearing up (the harndness going away, milk looks normal). Some want to now try to switch the calf to nursing the cows back mastitis teat by milking out all other teats. I say not to, that so far it seems to be doing good without any more problems and that tampering with it takes a chance that it will cause a spread of infection just when it seems to be kicking it completely.

I figure the calf is used to the front two so even if you get it on the back on it will try the front if from nothing else but habit and this will just put them to risk.

Besides taking the calf of the cow (we probably will but I want this question answered for a good reason) would you guys/gals leave the calf as is or try the switch.

Also as a second topic what is the best way to get a calf to bottle (just milk cow out and the calf will take to the bottle?)?

Thank you
Mike


PS. We do milk the cow out but by then the calf has gotten her share. They are talking about going to milking 3 times a day to keep her milked out to force the calf to the back (or bottle if we do that).
0 x

randiliana
GURU
GURU
Posts: 4809
Joined: Wed Aug 24, 2005 6:26 pm
Location: Saskatchewan, Canada

Re: Mastitis Cow with calf

Postby randiliana » Wed May 03, 2006 8:23 pm

MikeJoel wrote:Also as a second topic what is the best way to get a calf to bottle (just milk cow out and the calf will take to the bottle?)?

Thank you
Mike


Mike, I certainly can't help you with the mastitis questions. We rarely run into that being beef. However, to get the calf onto a bottle, you are going to have to separate her from the cow, and most likely let her get hungry. If you are lucky, once she starts to feel hungry she will latch right onto the bottle, if you aren't, you may have to leave her 24+ hours before she will suck, and the occasional calf just won't suck a bottle at all. This is the best way we have found to get a calf (that was on a cow) onto a bottle. First they HAVE to be hungry!! You will probably want to get a halter (or rope) or something onto the calf to control it, I prefer the nylon halters that don't tighten up. Then we will tie the calf up (mind you we have beef calves here that aren't used to being handled) and it will naturally pull back. Straddle the calf's shoulders, and lean over its head to place the nipple into the calf's mouth. If you are fortunate, the calf will take right to the bottle, and that will be it. If you aren't so fortunate, wiggle the nipple around in its mouth, use your hands to squeeze his mouth on the nipple (to simulate sucking), or just do whatever you think might work, once again if you are fortunate, the calf will start sucking. If not (give it 15 min or so) then I would just let the calf go for a few more hours and try again. If the calf is healthy, going without milk for a day or so won't hurt it too much. We have had them go for over a week (1 1/2 month old orphan) before we could get them on a bottle. BUT you will want to supply water, and some sort of grain for it. You don't want it to dehydrate or starve!!
0 x
“The three great essentials to achieve anything worthwhile are, first, hard work; second, stick-to-itiveness; third, common sense.” Thomas A. Edisonl

Randi

My Blog
http://easygenes.blogspot.com/

User avatar
milkmaid
GURU
GURU
Posts: 5295
Joined: Mon Nov 08, 2004 12:34 pm
Location: Idaho

Postby milkmaid » Thu May 04, 2006 9:28 pm

I am supposed to be getting the CMT in the mail tomorrow (turns out there was nowhere out here to get it).


It's "tomorrow" now - what's the CMT say?
0 x
Basics needed to answer questions: age, weight, breed, sex. # affected vs # in group, feed type/amount, prior vaccinations, deworming, antibiotics, any recent changes....

More info = better answers.

MikeJoel
Cowhand
Cowhand
Posts: 176
Joined: Tue Apr 04, 2006 9:41 am
Location: Down East Maine
Contact:

Postby MikeJoel » Thu May 04, 2006 10:22 pm

:lol: Just about to post it.

(Remember this is my first CMT so Ill try to describe)

The left side seems good. I put 1/2 teaspoons of milk in and same amount of the reagent. It pretty much just looked like slightly purple fluid, nothing seemed thick at all.

Now I did the next on the front right (the one I suspected of some mastitis). Same amounts. The milk now seemed slightly thicker. Not really any gell. But as you swirled it you could tell by it's movement that it was thicker than normal fluid.

On the back right (the known quarter). It was same as the front but thicker. I still don't call it a gell, but more like a thick fluid, like a slime.

So by going by the chart I would have to say (in my estimations) that the left is clear. The front may be "trace" to "1". The back I my barely reach a "2" but I didn't notice any sediment so I lean more to "1".

1 is refered to a "weak".

There you go :)

When would a dairy put the cow back on? I mean would a test like this one keep the milk from being used?

The mastitis does seem to be going away. We have been using heat, massage and milking it out (you know, how I wanted to handle it) and it does seem to be slowly recovering. Most of the hardness is going away.

Mike
0 x

User avatar
born2run
Trail Boss
Trail Boss
Posts: 463
Joined: Wed Oct 05, 2005 1:47 pm
Location: NW Wisconsin
Contact:

Postby born2run » Fri May 05, 2006 3:21 am

A CMT result like you described would probably get the cow treated (or retreated). To answer your question, no...that quarter would not go in the tank, as it would elevate the herd's overall SCC.
0 x
The world is like a mirror. Smile at it and it will smile back.

User avatar
milkmaid
GURU
GURU
Posts: 5295
Joined: Mon Nov 08, 2004 12:34 pm
Location: Idaho

Postby milkmaid » Sat May 06, 2006 8:07 pm

MikeJoel wrote:When would a dairy put the cow back on?


Depending on what type of dairy, they may have her in the tank now, OR they may (most likely) treat it. I would still treat it; it hasn't gone so long that I'd call it chronic. Chronic cows - we have a few of those that we put in the tank every day, but ideally you wouldn't have any.

MikeJoel wrote:The mastitis does seem to be going away. We have been using heat, massage and milking it out (you know, how I wanted to handle it) and it does seem to be slowly recovering. Most of the hardness is going away.


"Mastitis" = infection.

Infections may or may not be the type the cow's immune system can clean up on her own. See my post on the board about my staph treatment plan. I haven't yet run across a case of THAT that cleared up by itself.

Hardness in the quarter is an obvious sign that there's something wrong, but not all cows with mastitis have any type of swelling or hardness in the quarter. Last few I've treated looked and felt perfectly normal from the outside - the problem was only evident upon stripping.

I have seen the very occasional case that DID clear up on its own - but they were normally the type that killed the quarter in the process. Everything else seems to clear up partially but not completely, and you'll have a few clumps and flakes at the inital stripping for the rest of the lactation. OR, those chronic cases will suddenly flare and then kill the quarter. When a chronic case flares you're SOL - the infection is so firmly established the chance of getting it cleaned up at that point is slim to none.

And, these cows tend to start with an infection in one quarter and then it 'moves' to the others. We have one cow on the cull list right now (if she wasn't on antibiotics for something else, she'd be shipped Tuesday) that has two bad quarters, one dead quarter, and one good quarter.

How would you like your cow ending up like THAT? :shock:

Treat it now, while there's still a chance to get it completely cleared up.

MikeJoel wrote:Some want to now try to switch the calf to nursing the cows back mastitis teat by milking out all other teats. I say not to, that so far it seems to be doing good without any more problems and that tampering with it takes a chance that it will cause a spread of infection just when it seems to be kicking it completely.

I figure the calf is used to the front two so even if you get it on the back on it will try the front if from nothing else but habit and this will just put them to risk.


Yes and no. The calf is going to discover there are other teats there sooner or later, regardless of what you do or do not do, or do or do not want. The quarters are at risk now - not just because of the calf, but because you are touching them too. And if the whole left side is infected and the calf is nursing off the front quarters, don't you figure the right front is seriously at risk??

Cow would be best off if she were completely milked out twice a day. Or three, or four times a day. It doesn't matter. Just milk her out completely when you start milking. In other words, separate cow and calf, milk cow by hand as much as you want morning and evening, and when you're done let the calf on to nurse her dry. When calf is done, separate them again.
0 x
Basics needed to answer questions: age, weight, breed, sex. # affected vs # in group, feed type/amount, prior vaccinations, deworming, antibiotics, any recent changes....

More info = better answers.

User avatar
shutskytj
Trail Boss
Trail Boss
Posts: 366
Joined: Fri Feb 03, 2006 7:05 am
Location: ct

Postby shutskytj » Sat May 13, 2006 8:22 am

Mike as far as switching the calf to the bottle, make the calf drink out of a bucket instead of a bottle much easier make take a couple days but the calf will learn to drink instead of suck
0 x


Return to “Got Milk?”

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 3 guests