Thursday, March 26, 2015

The story of the Moo-Steer T-Bone *TBT**

One of the things I need to do is get some posts caught up, so the current plan (we'll see how this goes) is that I'll do a "Throw Back Thursday" and get some of these old posts done and then after awhile, I'll put them where they belong chronologically...

So at the beginning of the year when I did my 101 list, I put "Go to Arizona" on the list never thinking it would become a reality so soon.  Things developed and it became apparent that we needed to go out and visit with Man's Mom sooner rather than later.

So, what to do about the farm??  Luckily, I have a friend down the road a piece that is also "homesteading" and she was willing to come over and take care of the critters while we were gone, but what to do so I wouldn't lose my milk production.  Then, despite the fact that it is very difficult to find bull calves right now, I had the opportunity to get a week old calf for a very reasonable cost (or so I thought...)The idea was that since the twins were mostly weaned, we needed a calf that would be nursing frequently so we wouldn't lose our production. 

On 1/20 I drove an hour north to pick up the calf.  After debate, and hitch hiking one name after another, he was named "MooSteer T-Bone" (Mr.T)

Why yes, I do often travel with a cow in the back of my car!

Mama & MooSteer!

Hershey is a wonderful foster / nurse cow.  She immediately took him and was protective of him from the dogs.  He nursed great...too great and overate.

Unfortunately, within about 24 hours, MooSteer developed scours (cow diarrhea).  When they have scours, they can dehydrate quickly and die.  I brought him inside to get him warmed up and gave him a bath.  Once he was warmed and clean...back out to the barn. 

Three hours later, he couldn't stand up and was scouring much worse, so back into the house and the bath tub.  Another shower.  Started feeding him with a bottle and give "cow Gatorade".

Then started the feedings every few hours. 

And multiple showers a day.

And keeping the baby warm (1/26/15)
The vet was called and more medicines were given.

I got the calf to make things easier for the trip, but at this point, I didn't sleep more than 2 hours at a time for about 4 days. Thus the haggard pictures!
Just keepin' it real, people.
My bathroom has never been so clean.  Every few hours he got a shower and the tub was bleached out.  Family laundry went by the wayside and only cow laundry seemed to be getting done.

He seemed to be getting a bit stronger, so I took him outside for a walk.  A good friend of mine gave us an outgrown coat for him to wear.

Another night of feeding him via syringe every two hours, and medicines and electrolytes.  I knew that if he didn't turn soon, I was going to need to intubate him (Feed via tube straight into the stomach-not easy and very scary)
The next morning was gorgeous (cold, but sunny)

He seemed to be eating better, and so I took him outside.  He actually walked half way to the barn with me, so we decided to let him have a few hours of fresh air.

And then I did 'tube him to get some food into him.  Scary or not. 

 By chore time, he was laying in a really small stall made of hay bales with a heater on him.  It was not looking any better.

It was youth group night, so I left him for a few hours.  When I returned, no sign of a messy bum.  So according to the vets instructions, I needed to tube again.  

Shortly thereafter, (like within 20 minutes) he was groaning.  I held him in my arms and was patting his tummy.  He gave a little moo and was gone. 8 days of nursing him, and he was no longer.

And I was left wondering, did I do it?  Did I tube wrong?  
What more could I have done?  I still don't know.


Niki said...

You did the best you could. I am proud of you sharing this story since i know how hard it was.
And i am so thankful that i got to see the pics of him in the plaid jacket!

Sabrina Parrish said...

You did everything just perfectly. Sometimes is just is not meant to be..Sending Hugs and love from Tennessee! (((HUGS)))