Bottle calf won't eat

Discussion in 'Beef Cattle Discussion' started by BoldVenture, Jan 10, 2015.

  1. BoldVenture

    BoldVenture New Member

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    I just got 2 Holstein Bull bottle calves yesterday. They both had scours when I got them, I gave them each half a scour pill yesterday... One of the calves is super healthy and crazy about his bottle, the other calf showed no interest at all in eating yesterday when I got him home (they were both up and alert when I picked them up) and just laid curled up in the straw shivering and wouldn't even stand up, I didn't know if he'd make it through the night. Got up this morning and he was up and acting hungry, he took his bottle and drank about 1/4 of it and stopped and hasn't eaten any more all day, he's acted interested today but would take the bottle and eat. I force fed him 1 bottle this afternoon. Any advice?


    Bold Venture Farms
    Buffalo Valley, TN
     
  2. BoldVenture

    BoldVenture New Member

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    *would NOT take the bottle and eat


    Bold Venture Farms
    Buffalo Valley, TN
     

  3. DoubleR

    DoubleR Repro Lover

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    First off how old are they?
    What scour pill did you give them?
    Are they still scoured up?
    Do either have a fever?
    What's the housing like for them?
     
  4. BoldVenture

    BoldVenture New Member

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    They are about 2 weeks old. I don't know if he has a fever... I don't know what kind of scour pill I gave him either :/. I just asked for some at the feed store and they put them in a paper bag so I don't have the packaging. They are in a barn stall with no drafts and 2 heat lamps on them and plenty of straw to lay in and some fine stem hay and water if they want it.


    Bold Venture Farms
    Buffalo Valley, TN
     
  5. BoldVenture

    BoldVenture New Member

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    I don't think they are scoured up anymore. I'll check in a bit.


    Bold Venture Farms
    Buffalo Valley, TN
     
  6. DoubleR

    DoubleR Repro Lover

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    If they are 2 weeks old a bottle twice a day is WAY to much!
    That in itself will scour them up and make them lethargic.
    Think the best all you can eat buffet twice a day. ;)
    Cut them back to 1/4 bottle 3 times a day for best results/growth. If you don't have the ability to feed 3x a day then 1/2 bottle max 2x daily.
    A happy healthy calf is the calf that is vigorously demanding food at each feeding and still begging for more after they drink their bottle.
    Add some probiotics for a few days to help stabilize their gut and add a good quality calf starter for them to munch on as they develop. Great job on the fine hay. A lot of people forget that. :)
    Be sure your milk is milk based and not soy also. Soy based replacers are known to give scours and extremely poor growth and pot bellies.
    Get a quick read thermometer to have on hand so you can take temps when things like this come up. Helps greatly in diagnosis and treatments.
    Lastly be sure to write down what meds and how much you give. It is very important if you or a vet need to treat farther.
    Hope this helps. :)
     
  7. BoldVenture

    BoldVenture New Member

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    Ok! That's good to know!! I thought it was a lot but that's what the guy I got them from was feeding them. I'll cut it back. The one calf is doing great. Super healthy and looks to have no more scours. The other guy which is smaller (and possibly younger) is still scoured up and now has a runny nose. His eyes are still bright and he will get up some. I've force fed him twice today ( he still won't take a bottle). I gave him another half a scour pill today. I'm heading to town to pick up a thermometer and some calf starter to have available right now.


    Bold Venture Farms
    Buffalo Valley, TN
     
  8. BoldVenture

    BoldVenture New Member

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    Oh and I added pro biotics this morning to his replacer.


    Bold Venture Farms
    Buffalo Valley, TN
     
  9. BoldVenture

    BoldVenture New Member

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    And I've just gotta say thank you DoubleR for everything your doing here. You've already given me some great advice and I've read through most of the posts on here and you've helped a lot of people. Thanks again. :)


    Bold Venture Farms
    Buffalo Valley, TN
     
  10. DoubleR

    DoubleR Repro Lover

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    Your doing great! It's all a learning experience. :) We've raised quite a few of them over the years. Love them babies ;).
    Good job on the healthy one. Keep it up. :)
    As for the smaller one I have some suggestions/comments.
    Watch for dehydration first off. If you need pointers on that ask. :)
    Obviously cut back on the milk to both. Skip a meal if he's not eating. See if he has an appetite after that. Only give him a 1/4 of a bottle. Get him HUNGRY.
    Here's the thing about force feeding or tubing them. They get lazy. I've seen people tubing calves and continuing to because the calf wouldn't "eat on its own". Only to find (once they've brought it to me) that the otherwise healthy calf, gets a real appetite from lack of food (after a few missed meals) and starts to ravenously nursing from a bottle on their own. It's easier for them if we do it for them ;) He really needs the sucking though. Gets the saliva flowing and helps the gut in so many ways.
    I'd recommend keeping them on the probiotics. Especially on the smaller one. I'd be suspicious (remember I haven't actually seen them) that the amount of milk is what's scouring up that baby.
    What color is his stool and is there any blood in it? This can tell me a lot.
    My hope is if you cut back in the food and get probiotics in him the scours will clear up "on their own".
    Also if he were here I'd give him Vitamin B injection. These 2 things will do wonders for appetite and getting his stomach balanced out.


    Awesome! You'll have him turned around in no time. :)



    Well thank you :) That's really nice of you. Your more than welcome. We're a very young forum so it takes a bit to get responses from other members at times. Just be patient. ;)
    If you have any forum issues feel free to PM me. :)
    Keep up the great work with those calves. :)
     
  11. BoldVenture

    BoldVenture New Member

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    He's still w little slow and still has the runs but he ate on his own this morning!


    Bold Venture Farms
    Buffalo Valley, TN
     
  12. DoubleR

    DoubleR Repro Lover

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    Every little bit in the right direction counts!
    This is after you cut down on the quantity of milk?
     
  13. BoldVenture

    BoldVenture New Member

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    Yes it is. Feeding him 1/2 a bottle at the most twice per day.


    Bold Venture Farms
    Buffalo Valley, TN
     
  14. BoldVenture

    BoldVenture New Member

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    ImageUploadedByCattle Forum1421164567.220204.jpg


    Bold Venture Farms
    Buffalo Valley, TN
     
  15. DoubleR

    DoubleR Repro Lover

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    So cute! Keep up the great work!
     
  16. gumcreek

    gumcreek New Member

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    If you have one with a runny nose I would temp them. Double R is giving you good advice on the feeding but if you have a sick one it may need antibiotics to get over it. It's best to build a relationship with a local vet if possible for the meds.
     
  17. BoldVenture

    BoldVenture New Member

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    Thanks. I just had a weaned Angus calf die this morning. His hip was out of joint or broken not sure which, I had planned to take him to the vet to see if they could fix it (I bought him like this) but never got the chance. Pretty bummed about his dying


    Bold Venture Farms
    Buffalo Valley, TN
     
  18. BoldVenture

    BoldVenture New Member

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    He was acting normal, eating, drinking, up walking around, dry nose clean tail, and was just dead this morning


    Bold Venture Farms
    Buffalo Valley, TN
     
  19. DoubleR

    DoubleR Repro Lover

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    Bummer! Sorry to hear that. Did he have a temperature?
     
  20. BoldVenture

    BoldVenture New Member

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    I don't know if he had a temp, I never checked it as he never acted sick


    Bold Venture Farms
    Buffalo Valley, TN