Tuesday, April 22, 2014

Heifer Watch

I was dragging this morning at work. Yes I had my cup or 2 of coffee, but late nights on calving watch can take it out of you. A few years ago I spent a 2 days with a friend at their place for calving. Not sure how we were so lucky with getting the heifer shift, but we did. Every few hours we were up; in the cold and snow. In that situation you leave your snuggly pjs on and pull coverall over that top. You get a few hours of sleep where ever you can: couch, recliner, floor and then up again to check. Last night really wasn't bad as we only have one more heifer to go. As I was out there watching her progression, I thought to myself how lucky I am to live this lifestyle, even if it means I look and feel tired the next morning.

Not the greatest pictures, it was pitch black last night.
 Heifers spend more time in labor and more time giving birth than mature cows.
Contractions initially occur approximately every 15 minutes. Then they progress to more frequent and longer. I could tell she was trying.
The sign of the second stage of labor is the expulsion of the water bag, as you can see in these pictures. When you see this, she should calve within a few hours.
I decided to go back into the house for 30 min, not thinking she would have it then.....but she did. I was rather disappointed that I missed the whole process, as I was hoping to "document" it for blogging sake.

Here is the little thing this morning, healthy and happy! Momma is licking and caring for her new calf.

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