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Monday, December 26, 2011

This Morning's Adventure

The past week or so there has been a heifer up the road who was nearing her calving time. Yesterday she'd been off by herself, but nothing happened all day. Then this morning when I went to feed them I went in to check on her.

She was lying down, with the hooves and the nose of a calf sticking out of her rear. I took one look at the calf and thought; "It's all over for that one." Its tongue was hanging out of its mouth and it just didn't look good. I whacked on the cow but she didn't move; just laid there with her chin in the mud.

I was going to head back to get hubby, but then I saw something.

The calf's chin twitched. I thought I was seeing things. I chucked it a bit and sure enough, it moved again.

I whacked on the cow again, but still she would not move. I thought maybe I could herd her to the corral, but no dice.

So I ran back to the 4-wheeler, got hubby's nice new rope, put it around one of the calf's ankles, dug in my heels and started hauling away.

Nothing happened.

I took a fresh grip and leaned back into it.

The calf moved a fraction of a millimeter.

The cow looked around.

I kept pulling for all I was worth, and hollered at the cow. The calf moved a tiny bit more.

The cow decided things weren't so bleak and started to shove too!

YAY!

The cow gave a big groan, and shoved even more.

We had more movement. I hollered at the cow again.

She shoved some more and...

Finally the whole head of the calf popped out!

We paused a moment and then pulled and shoved respectively until the chest came out.

By this time we had an audience of about 10 other heifers in a half-circle behind us.

I hauled again and out slipped a nice heifer calf, steaming in the 30 some degree morning air. I heard the calf take a wheezing breath, so I whacked on her a bit, and turned her upright. It was just a second or two before she had her head up and was looking around.

I looked behind me and the rest of the heifers were there, along with the belligerent bull. So I made sure the cow knew the calf was there and skedaddled. I was worried about the cow not being able to get up, but she did later.

BUT...

Hubby went up there after awhile to bring them in and the cow had just taken off and left the calf, so hubby brought it in and cleaned it up and now I am thawing colostrum for it. Other than that she's doing OK.

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