I awoke with a horrible sinus headache...one that pounded my head with every step I took. I must have looked real bad, because my awesome hubby said I could stay home and his dad would help feed. Yeah, I had to look real bad, because I've tried to call in sick and it hardly ever works. Anyway, I was staring at my computer when the phone rang an hour later to tell me we had a cow with a uterine prolapse.
These are never good we all prefer when things go according to "the plan". Often, the cow goes into shock and dies before we find them. If we can help them get things put back in place and treat the shock, we have a chance at least.
The calf was HUGE! The guys guessed it weighed 120 pounds at least. She amazingly had him by herself, but things didn't stop pushing when she got the calf out and out popped her uterus, too. Not good.
The guys got her rolled up on her belly, so gravity would work for them putting things back into place. Usually, I am in my father in law's position and not able to take pictures. Usually, these happen at 11:00 at night or 2:00 am in the sleet and rain and snow. But I digress. The feed sacks are important! As the vet got things cleaned up best he could, I slipped the bags underneath, so the uterus had something cleaner than the ground to rest on.
As he started pushing we saw something that none of us liked. She had torn a whole in her uterus that A LOT of blood was coming from. (She did pick one of the few brushy spots to have her calf in and we guessed that one of the broken shoots caused the tear.) The vet had to stop for a minute and attempt to sew that spot closed and we hoped for the best. They continued to push and push and finally "the basketball sized mass went into the softball sized hole."
Sometimes We are Mean to Our Cows. She is paralyzed on her back legs, but is trying to stand which is great news. A 1100 pound cow that doesn't want to try isn't going to make it. We also gave her some antibiotics, Vitamin K to help with blood clotting and some injectable minerals to help with healing.
Then I had to tend to a calf who's mama was in no condition to feed him. In fact, she didn't even clean him up very well. I gave him a bottle of colostrum replacer. Colostrum is the first milk a mom produces after giving birth. It is full of antibodies that help the calf develop it's own immune system, but it needs to be fed within 6 hours of birth. The gut lining starts to close to antibodies after 6 hours.
All Living Things Die.
-A Kansas Farm Mom