Raising calfs

Discussion in 'General Cattle Discussion' started by luke93, Apr 14, 2014.

  1. luke93

    luke93 New Member

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    I am getting two Aberdeen Angus calfs which are two weeks old.

    These will be my first cattle and I am a bit nervous about keeping them in good health.

    I plan to keep them outside as after reading a number of books and articles I believe this is okay as the weather is reasonably warm.

    What accessories will I need for my calfs? I understand I will need to bottle feed them a milk replacement, is there any other minerals or things I can give them to help them along?

    When can I give them vaccinations and what should I vaccinate against?

    Thanks
    Luke
     
  2. Fairfarmhand

    Fairfarmhand New Member

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    They will need hay, all that they want to eat. Calf starter and a mineral block. Free access to all the fresh clean water that tehy need. A place to get out of the wind is a must.
     

  3. DoubleR

    DoubleR Repro Lover

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    Are they on mom or being bottle fed?
     
  4. luke93

    luke93 New Member

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    They will be being bottle fed 3 times a day
     
  5. RanchWife

    RanchWife New Member

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    Try to get a good milk replacer that is all milk product and not soy based. Tractor supply has a good one that is reasonably priced and mixes up well. Did you ask if they were vaccinated when you bought them? We give ours a 7 way Clostridial vaccine called alpha seven at birth then we booster it about a month prior to weaning. You might keep some scours bolus on hand just in case as well. What do you plan to do with the calves in the end?


    www.calving2014.wordpress.com
     
  6. luke93

    luke93 New Member

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    I don't think they have been vaccinated yet, I plan to in the next week.
    I plan to breed them In a few years but they are just pets until then.
     
  7. luke93

    luke93 New Member

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    When can I introduce hay to my calves? One is 3 weeks and one is a month old.

    How do I get them to start to eat there calf starter pellets? They have some in their pen but are not really interested
     
  8. Fairfarmhand

    Fairfarmhand New Member

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    They need hay ASAP. They won't eat too much right away, but it will be good for them to start nibbling around on it.

    I put a handful of starter pellets in their mouths after they finish a bottle when they are still mouthing around looking for more milk.
     
  9. luke93

    luke93 New Member

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    Thanks for that, I was under the impression they had to wait a while before being on hay or put out on pasture
     
  10. RanchWife

    RanchWife New Member

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    They'll begin to eat it out of curiosity but it helps if they see another cow eating it. The bits of bacteria they get from eating a little bit of hay help to develop the good bacteria in the rumen. As this bacteria develops along with their rumen, they'll be able to eat more hay. Google rumen developments of calves, it's very interesting!


    www.calving2014.wordpress.com
     
  11. DoubleR

    DoubleR Repro Lover

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    What RanchWife said^^^^^
    Ours have access to hay and starter grain from day 1.
    I try and find a small stem softer hay to start my bottle calves on. Easier on the gut and they seem more interested in trying it. Has helped mine over the years. Once they are eating hay pretty well I'll get a better quality hay like alfalfa.
     
  12. rene

    rene New Member

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    Yea i hsve had better outcome with hay from day 1.
     
  13. cattlegirl

    cattlegirl New Member

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    What kind of hay do they need? Thanks
     
  14. RanchWife

    RanchWife New Member

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    No idea, mine get grass. Or eat the same our cows do. I think I saw The Fairfarmhand said hay that is more fine than coarse....


    www.calving2014.wordpress.com
     
  15. luke93

    luke93 New Member

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    My calves have had slight scours which I have managed to sort out with electrolyte drinks, I think I over fed them milk the first few days.

    There behind is now slightly messy. Am I supposed to clean it up?
    If so how do I go about doing it? What products should I use?
     
  16. Fairfarmhand

    Fairfarmhand New Member

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    We have a dog that likes to clean calf bottoms. Gross but it works. He's a Great Pyr.

    I'd clean it just because it's stinky and gross.

    Warm water and a rag. However if it's cool at all wheere you are, wait till a warm day. It's better for a calf to be smelly and dirty than clean and chilled.
     
  17. Fairfarmhand

    Fairfarmhand New Member

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    and oh, by the way. Calves often scour in response to stress. Just the move and changes can upset their tummies. I'd stick to the milk replacer recommendation on the bag. Don't switch out brands. Once they get used to one kind a change can mess them up again.
     
  18. luke93

    luke93 New Member

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    Thanks for that, shame I don't have. Dog at the moment.

    At what age can you start to bath and shampoo them?
     
  19. Dion

    Dion New Member

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    Lots of great advice on this thread.
     
  20. rene

    rene New Member

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    Good quality or any tupe of good hay the animal would eat. Its all good.