Wednesday, August 6, 2014
If it's Not One Thing, It's an Udder.
And when they damage your sargeants and your generals as well then it's hardly worth getting yourself upright and into the parlor for a round of equally uncomfortable treatments but our cow Mindy was a trooper recently.
Keith noticed an odd occurrance when milking her yesterday. He put on the four inflations, one to each teat and then, big surprise, milk starts pouring out of the TOP of her teat. Hmmmm, that can't be good.
A quick call to our amazing vet Al Whitman in Piper City, Il and soon enough Mindy is taken care of and Keith and I are even more educated about the bovine we care for. We were offered the option of a referral to the large vet clinic at the University Of Illinois but we opted for Home Care. We knew once in a large vet setting our animal would be more stressed (it's about an hour from our home) and she most likely would be treated with antibiotics which would negate her organic status.
So we kept her here understanding she might not gain function of the teat but since the injury was not life threatening and her immune system strong we felt confident she would heal well on her own. Although originally we thought the injury may have been an accidental horn goring from one of our other cows, doc thought it looked more like a hoof injury. When Mindy was lying down some other big fat cow probably stepped on her upper teat.
For now we do not know if the injury was pre-planned or truly a case of one cow just getting into anothers personal space. The investigation continues but most of the girls are being quiet about the whole deal.
Suffice it to say, Mindy is the new cow in the milking herd group, just having had her first calf a few days ago and inappropriate herd hazing is a strong possibility. Please note the administration of South Pork Ranch does not condone this behavior but we cannot be everywhere all the time now can we?
Mindy was a real trooper through it all. She allowed, with no fuss at all, our vet to give her a sedative and a local to numb the area. After a little bit he then oh so delicately stitched closed the wound while our GK's watched and provide emotional support to the patient.
Mindy "danced" a little but no kick, no struggle. Six stiches later she was allowed to rest and enjoy the remainder of her sedative. We did milk her that evening as letting the milk build up in that quarter would've caused her more pain and possibly mastitis. Her milk will be separated from the rest of the tank until she is better healed.
We were told there was only a 50/50 chance that the teat would function properly so we made the decision right then we would take Mindy with us when we move to the Poor Farm. Her possible new status as a "three titter," as my husband so classily referred to her, would work just fine to meet our future milk needs at our littler farm of the future. We have also come to admire her very calm nature, even when she is not sedated!
So ladies remember. Never jump up suddenly without checking first to see that some fat cow is not standing on your mammary system.