Yesterday Dr. M, one of our vets, was out to check Miss Moo to see if she is with calf……she WAS indeed pregnant but she miscarried.
Warning contains some graphic cow anatomy details! Not so wordless this week, but that’s not really new.
A week ago Friday or Saturday evening a couple of the children came in from the barn saying Miss Moo had a bubble in her butt. By the time I got down to the barn the bubble had popped and she had a clear, mucous like discharge, not bloody, but indicative she could have miscarried. Believe me I googled every known term for “cow miscarriage”, except spontaneous abortion since I hate that term, to learn what I could about miscarriages in cows. Then I prepared B, just in case, because I didn’t want her to be shocked if the vet did announce Miss Moo had miscarried.
Yesterday when Dr. M checked Miss, she only had two thirds the fluid she should have and Dr. M could not feel the calf. We were half expecting it, but it’s still disappointing. Miss Moo should absorb (such an awful way to describe it) the calf in the next 10-14 days and go back into her heat cycle at which time we will try to AI (artificially inseminate her) again. The vet suggested we switch bull semen and instead of trying for a pure bred Guernsey to try for a cross breed. There may be some incompatibilities, though she has been bred to “Grumpy” before. So we are going to try our friend’s Dutch Belted (otherwise known as Oreo cookie cows black with a big white strip in the middle of their bellies) and see if the third time works. It will be interesting to see what the calf looks like, that’s for sure!
Here’s what my friend said about the Dutch Belted bull semen (like you all want bull semen education, but hey, it’s my blog and I’ll blog if I want to, blog if I want to! Extreme tiredness = silliness):
Your straw (or more, if it takes more than one try) will be from “Snappy”. Supposedly, Snappy sires “easy-calving”, vigorous calves, so we’ve used his stuff on two heifers now. Funny, the heifer that just went to C’s friend in North Carolina is carrying a Snappy calf, half-sibling to your eventual calf.
Dr. M and I thought it would be a good fit, because both of our heifers “took” on the first try with Snappy, and both kept their calves past the time when they could have lost an early pregnancy.
Miss Moo is finally up to her normal body condition after coming to us last April extremely underweight so the vet was impressed again by her weight gain. At his last visit he said she needed another 100-200 lbs, so that she looked good to the vet was good news. We knew she was doing well because none of her ribs are showing anymore, it’s just that confirmation is extra nice, you know? Hopefully her improved body condition will help her conceive this next time. We will be upping her minerals too. He said she isn’t a “fertile Myrtle”. Even if she isn’t we would never get rid of her. She’s a pet, as well as a food source. Besides now that her weight is up she won’t be anything to feed once she’s on pasture and we grow our own hay for winter so it’s not like we have to pay out a bunch of money for hay. I am going to hope and pray this next AI sticks.
Now, here’s to hoping for a fall calf!