So, here's the long story behind Blossom's calf.
I've been watching her for days. She's been getting more and more enormous, so I've been getting up in the middle of the night to check on her. So Thursday afternoon, she holes up in this gulley filled with briers. Scratched her udder all up. I kept checking on her all day, and around 3 I ran her out of the gulley and up to the high ground , where I could watch her from the kitchen window. While I was moving her, her water broke. So I was glad that soon we'd have a calf.
Around 4:30, I checked her and she's passed more of the water bag, but didn't seem to be making more progress. I was starting to get a little worried, because she wasn't pushing much, and when she was, she didn't seem to be making any progress. There was also more blood than is in a normal birth. So I brought her up to the barn and put her in the calving pen.
5:15---still no progress, Call my dh and tell him my worries and he hops in the car for home. After watching her for awhile, still seeing an appalling lack of strong contractions/pushing, my girls and I get her in the head catch so I can check her. I've never done a thing like this in all my life. I've gotta put my hand in WHERE?
I put on some latex gloves (don't want that mess under my nails
) And start checking her out. There's a foot, where's your head.....Found some teeth and then the calf was sucking on my fingers. Made me so happy because I knew then that I was working to save a live calf, not a dead one. Finally found the other foot and figured out that both feet were up under his head. Elbows were hung up on momma's pelvis. Gently extended the front feet, made sure that the head stayed lined up. (did you know that the inside of a cow is HOT?)
About that time, dh showed up. He hollered from the house, "What you got?" I said, "2 feet and a head. He's big!"
He ran inside, threw off his shirt and pulled on coveralls (It was COLD outside) He came outside and we started pulling. The calf was massive. I would not have been able to pull him myself. Blossom's contractions and pushing were just not very effective at expelling this giant. Finally after about 15 minutes, we got his head and shoulders out. Then we let her out of the chute. As she walked forward, the calf dropped right into my dh's arms.
That was one of the coolest things I have ever done on the farm.