A cow is a ruminant. This means that she looks for and eats food almost all her free time, chews it thoroughly. Calves are no different from their parents, they also constantly chew whatever. But their stomach is much smaller than that of adults. If a calf accidentally eats a rag, it is important to know what to do in such situations, because it can get stuck there for a long time. And this often leads to a blockage in the stomach.
Once the calf has swallowed the rag, it creates a number of potential hazards. The worst thing that can happen to him is a blockage of the stomach, followed by a stop in the work of digestion. In general, a blockage in a cow's stomach is a dangerous thing.
Their stomachs contain bacteria that help them digest their food. But these bacteria produce a lot of gas. With healthy digestion, this gas will naturally escape. But once the stomach is blocked by an indigestible cloth or other debris, this movement is disrupted and gas builds up in the esophagus. The result will be a severely distended stomach, leading to complications and excruciating death for the animal.
But an eaten rag does not necessarily threaten the calf with death. If the rag was small, dilapidated and made of natural material, then with a high probability it will be digested. But this process can be delayed, and this will affect the animal in the following way:
- it will lose weight greatly;
- will walk sluggish;
- will begin to refuse food;
- constipation will appear, and sometimes diarrhea.
Causes of Stomach Stopping
Not only can an eaten rag cause a calf's stomach to stall, there are many other reasons. They are divided into three categories:
- Human factor.
- The fault of the calf itself.
- Infectious disease and parasites.
To begin with, it is worth considering the reasons for stopping the stomach due to the fault of the person himself. As a rule, this is due to feeding poor quality food. Feeding a calf with a heavy meal that is hot or cold will inevitably lead to digestive problems. Unsanitary living conditions also negatively affect livestock. Another common cause of stomach stoppage is calf fright. Because of it, the esophagus is greatly narrowed, spasms appear.
Often the calves themselves are to blame for the stopping of the stomach. While walking, they eat everything that gets in the way: ropes, rags, polyethylene, various metal objects. Before swallowing something, calves usually chew the object for a long time and if they cannot chew, they simply spit it out.
Another reason is the infection of the calf with any infectious disease, as a result of which paralysis of the stomach occurs. For example, rabies, tuberculosis, leukemia, E. coli.
How to tell if your stomach has stopped
As soon as the stomach of the bull stops, the symptoms appear immediately:
- visually noticeable bloating;
- complete refusal of food;
- open mouth, chewing on emptiness;
- foam coming out of the mouth;
- weakness, heavy breathing.
If the blockage and stoppage have occurred partially, then the three-week-old calf can still regurgitate gas. But if you do not take action in time, then soon the stomach can completely stop, which will lead to the imminent death of the animal.
How to start digestion in cattle
Before giving any medications or infusions to the calf, you need to look down its throat. Sometimes it also happens that a foreign object gets stuck in the throat of the animal, without getting into the stomach. If he really has something there, then you should try to get the trash with your hand. Small calves do not resist much, so they do not need to be tied.
Zarechny Maxim Valerievich
Agronomist with 12 years of experience. Our best summer cottage expert.
You can also try to irritate the tongue in every possible way, causing the calf to gag. There is a chance that he will simply regurgitate a foreign object.
If the foreign object could not be removed, then for a start it is worth giving the animal "No-shpu" or "Sulfocamphoin". Perhaps the stomach stopped due to cramps or a switch to dry food. It is also important to massage the scar by gently crushing the side of the calf with your fist. If the above methods did not help for several days, then we can say with confidence that the problem is precisely because of the stuck object inside the stomach. In this case, there are two options: either continue to treat the calf using folk methods, or seek help from a veterinarian.
As a rule, if the stomach really does not work, the veterinarian will prescribe special medications or surgery in an emergency. However, veterinarians do not work in all localities, therefore, if there is no way to get qualified help, and the calf has already lost a lot of weight and is on the verge of death, then perhaps the best solution would be to end the suffering of the animal.
There are several folk methods with the help of which experienced livestock breeders independently start the work of the stomach.
The first method: add 100 grams of yeast to a glass of warm water, then wait 30 minutes for swelling. Then add 200 grams of vodka and 100 grams of sugar to a hotel liter container, fill them with swollen yeast. If the resulting infusion turned out to be less than a liter, it is worth diluting with water. This liquid should be poured into the throat of the calf in small doses twice a day.
The second method: add 10 milliliters of hellebore tincture to a half-liter bottle of water, then pour the solution into the animal's mouth a couple of times a day.
Also used: tomato juice, decoction of yarrow and St. John's wort, various infusions of moonshine.
First of all, you need to monitor the cleanliness of the animal feeder and paddock. Often, it is there, through the carelessness of the owner, that garbage gets: scraps of fabric, bags, ropes, wires and other dangerous rubbish. It is important to keep an eye on the area where the cattle are walking, there should also be no garbage. Do not hang laundry within reach of cows, hide garden chemicals and paints.
It is worth planning the diet of calves correctly; they need to be fed with food that contains a large amount of minerals and vitamins. They should always have access to clean drinking water. If you follow all of the above conditions and promptly respond to the problem that has arisen, the calves will grow up vigorous and healthy.