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Friday, July 17, 2015

Thank You Daisy!

So, we had been battling digestive upset and bloat on The Princess what seemed like all week when we decided to take her for a trailer ride over 2.5 hours to the Oklahoma State University Veterinary Hospital. 

We arrived at 9:30 that night and were promptly met by a doctor and student.   
They gave her a thorough exam finding that she indeed did not have any rumen activity.
 
Her rumen pH was in the normal range and that most of the lymph nodes on her right side were swollen.
In an effort to repopulate the microorganisms in her rumen, they went to Daisy.  Daisy was donated to the hospital in December and replaced a five year old Angus steer who was retired to the Dairy Farm on the university campus to a life of luxury in a private pen with his own bale of hay.
 
Daisy has a hole from the outside straight into her rumen.  
Through this hole, they can collect rumen fluid from Daisy full of microorganisms that digest feed in the rumen. 

Daisy didn't seem stressed out at all about this.
Here is the fluid all collected and ready to be pumped into our princess.

A hard tube was placed in her mouth so she could chew on the flexible tube that was put into her stomach.  The veterinarian blew into the tube while the student listened.  She heard bubbles in fluid which meant he was blowing into the stomach and not her lungs...that was a good thing.  We didn't want to pump two gallons of fluid into her lungs!
Transferring rumen fluid from one cow to another is actually called Transfaunation.  The princess got three of these treatments before she came back home.
The next morning she was eating hay again and seemed to be doing well.  That was on Friday morning and we decided to leave her in Stillwater over the weekend to make sure she really was going to be better.  The attending veterinarian thought if baler twine or hardware (metal in the stomach) was causing the bloat, she would bloat over the weekend, so we left her until Monday.  

My mom once again loaded up into the truck with me to road trip for a heifer again.  She sure was happy to see us and get to see the light of day.  We were given strict orders to feed her only hay for the next week and to slowly increase her feed after that.  We also fed her poloxalene which prevents frothy bloat as well...just in case.

When we were told the price at OSU, we both laughed out loud.  Would you like to guess how much four days in ICU and three rumen transfaunations cost?