Tag Archives: milk

New orphan at the farm

The good news is that the baby is alive and well and about two months old. The bad news is that his mother died and we have no idea why. This winter has been the worst we’ve ever had for the older cows fighting amongst themselves. Hubby thinks this is what happened to “George’s” mom.
George is not a typical name I would give this adorable little guy but hubby thought it would be easy for him to remember and he uses it a lot.
George is still very skittish around most but is starting to come to me when I call. Of course, I get in his lot and talk and coo too him and am the one that feeds him most of the time. We will keep him in this small enclosure until I’m certain he will always come to me for bottle and feed or just when I call for him. We intend to put him in a small field with two yearling heifers in a few weeks.
The two heifers are beautiful as you can see and if you remember, one is Annabelle. Hubby wants to keep them close and have both come to him when called. If we leave them with their normal herd the older cows butt them away from the grain and goodies. He wants them to be in excellent shape when they are bred in the fall and give them the best start possible for their first calf.
These girls will be nice to little “George” and he’ll learn the ways of cows from them also. More updates as they grow, I promise!!

 

MEET GEORGE

Quietly waiting for his adoptive mom to show up with his bottle.

Quietly waiting for his adoptive mom to show up with his bottle.

Mom, is that you?  Why did you bring those dogs and cat with you??

Mom, is that you? Why did you bring those dogs and cat with you??

I'm not too sure about this but my tummy says otherwise!

I’m not too sure about this but my tummy says otherwise!

Yep, that's Mom and that's supper in that bottle.

Yep, that’s Mom and that’s supper in that bottle.

Boy, this stuff is good!

Boy, this stuff is good!

Thanks, Mom!

Thanks, Mom!

See ya in the morning!!

See ya in the morning!!

Our little orphan, Annabelle

Two weeks ago today one of our older cows (25+ years) had been in labor for more than a day and finally on Saturday morning had a beautiful little red/white faced heifer.

Annabelle-one day old, tired, cold and just lost her mama.

Annabelle-one day old, tired, cold and just lost her mama.

Her Mom died shortly after delivery and we were lucky to find Annabelle because she wasn’t near her Mom.  We think Mom couldn’t get up to nurse her and the other cows came to investigate and Annabelle followed them looking for warm nourishment.  Hubby found her about 100 yards from her Mom, wet, muddy and very cold.  She was covered with the afterbirth film and mud.  Hubby came back to the house to get me and we loaded her on the back of the pickup and brought her to the house.  Luckily it was a very nice, sunny morning but still  cool.  I first got some regular milk we drink, warmed it and added about a 1/2 cup of Karo syrup and took it to her.

Calf bottle full, warm and sweetened.

Calf bottle full, warm and sweetened.

 

I didn’t have to work with her much at all to get her to take about a pint and then I let her rest.  I got a very warm bucket of warm with some baby shampoo mixed in it and proceeded to bathe her as best as I could and covered her with a heavy towel to keep the cool air off until she quit shivering.  She lay quietly in the yard and our other new baby, Gyp, decided to make Annabelle her new best friend.  She licked her and lay with her and nipped at her trying to get her to play.

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After another hour passed, she seemed a little more active and got up and walked around in the yard so I decided to try to get some more milk in her.  She was ready for that bottle and grab hold quick.  Gyp hung around to keep her mouth cleaned off (she’s so funny) and we got another pint in her.

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Then we prepared her a good warm bed in the small garage close to the house.  This building has electricity in it and made it convenient for those after dark feedings.  I filled a  clean five gallon buck with water for her and hoped she would find it and not knock it over and fill her bed with water which was a little below the bucket.  While I was preparing her new home, Gyp watched after her.

Gyp watching Annabelle in the yard while I prepared her bedding.

Gyp watching Annabelle in the yard while I prepared her bedding.

 

We fed her a full bottle in the mornings before I went to work and during the day Hubby would feed her 1/2 bottle every four hours and then I fed her again around 6:00 in the evening after I got home from work.  She is doing really well and growing so fast!

BUT. . . . . . . .

Another of the older cows gave birth to a dead calf on Wednesday morning and she is usually such a good mother.  Her calf was a red heifer and Hubby decided to try another trick we’ve used in the past.  He took the dead calf away from the mother and put Mama in a small barn near the house and gave her some extra grain.  While she was eating he took a large area of hide from the dead calf and tied it onto Annabelle’s back.

Annabelle with an extra coat & a little trick to find a new mom.

Annabelle with an extra coat & a little trick to find a new mom.

He then walked Annabelle over to the barn to meet a new mama (we hoped).  After some more grain, some more coaxing Annabelle to the new area of milk and lots of prayers, the new mama and orphan calf quickly took to each other.  Hubby urged me to stay away from Annabelle for a couple days to make sure the adoption would work and I can happily announce that Annabelle’s new mother is very protective of her and Annabelle seems to be nursing and nuzzling her new Mom constantly.

Annabelle's new mom

Annabelle’s new mom

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The only downside to this story is that Gyp doesn’t have someone to chase and play!  That’s another story in the making!