Friday, May 2, 2008

Bringing In A New Life

A special thing happened today. It was unexpected for me. I didn't expect to have another "ranchy" post for you until next week. I expected to sit at the sewing machine repairing ripped Wranglers and shirts while watching movies much of the day as it snowed outside. Yes, for those of you outside of Wyoming it was snowing this morning and only 28 degrees at 10am. The Prairie Daddy went to town for a meeting mid-morning and before he left he let me know that there was a heifer that was calving.

Now we're not calving right now, so it was a surprise to me that a heifer was calving. Plus we don't calve the heifers here; they have their babes at Dad's place. Then I remembered that one of the neighbors bulls had a little fun with three of our little girls. Dang men. So, here we are, calving a heifer with an illegitimate calf. : )

The Prairie Daddy called me and The Prairie Kid on his way home and invited us to come along if they needed to pull the calf. Of course we wanted to go! So shortly after all three of us loaded up and headed to the barn.

I captured the event on my new video camera. I even got it downloaded and ready to show you on this post! I am pretty excited that this is my "video posting debut!"

But before you watch I need to give another "Option Out." THIS IS REALLY GRAPHIC and it might not be something everyone wants to watch. There are 4 clips. If you're not wanting to see two men help pull a baby calf out of a bawling heifer then feel free to skip to the last two'll enjoy the end result without the graphics. Otherwise, enjoy this amazing (but graphic) post. Please note: we love our animals and give them the utmost care. This heifer and her calf were unable to finish the laboring process without help. Having to pull this calf may look painful and mean, however this intervention potentially saved two lives. Also, we are careful to select bulls for heifers that will not have calves too big for heifers to handle. Many of our heifers do not need help calving. But remember, we didn't ask this bull to have his way with this heifer!

In this first clip The Prairie Daddy, who became The Calf-Pulling Ranch Vet, has managed to get inside and find the calf's front feet. He has gotten chains around them to have a grip and leverage on their pulling. They work with the heifer in her pushes, however this heifer wasn't pushing much at all so they just had to work without her cooperation. This is the "cow version" of helping a mommy get her babe out . It would be comparable to an o.b. using a vacuum to help a human mommy.

Now after the calf started to slide out it obviously got to a point where it got a little "stuck" and my brother-in-law got the calf turned a bit to help. This second clip shows the quick exit of the calf. I am warning you, as you pull a calf out when the mommy is standing up, it does quickly drop and it will hit the cement floor. The first time I saw this I just about fainted and cried. It is tough to see but it doesn't hurt the calf believe it or not.

This third clip is the trauma a 2 1/2 year old felt as 3 adults hushed him and were intently focused on a heifer for a while. He wasn't too sure about this.

But all ended up well and Mama and New Baby will soon get things figured out. And you'll see they already had visitors come and congratulate them!

I couldn't resist sharing this great surprise with you today. And I did manage to get the sewing done, one movie viewed, this posted, a cat nap, and some time with the family!


Camiwood said...

A big hello from an Ohio girl, I just came across your blog and I love it! I look forward to reading more about your 'prairie' life!

diana said...

Every time I see a calf being pulled, I just thank God that I am not a cow. I say the same thing when I see a cow being Aied. There are just some places an arm or two should never go.....

Amanda said...

Hey friend

Thanks for the ranch video. I love the baby calves and miss so much being home on the farm with all the babies. If we lived closer, you'd get tired of me hanging around living my ranching/farming life vicariously through you.