Need to tube feed a calf.....HELP! : LUSENET : Countryside : One Thread

I was given a 2 week old calf that has a birth defect and needs to be tube fed. I read a thread on here about the side of the mouth the tube should be placed on (was it the left?) and a hint about blowing into the tube to make sure its not in the lungs. I cant find it in the archives, does anyone know the particulars? Thanks, the baby has a severe underbite and maybe a cleft palate. You can hear the milk goes into his lungs when he sucks, and he stops and hacks, or the milk just comes out of his nose. Would a bullet be better than a tube? He eats hay fine so I'd like to give him a chance but if these cases die anyway I'll save my time and milk. Thanks

-- Julie (, April 15, 2000


I don't have an answer for you, but I do remember reading the thread. I'm pretty sure it was Patty at who posted a message about tube feeding a lamb. Then several people responded with advice about the glass of water & blowing into the tube. Maybe you could email Patty & ask. Good luck. Sherrie

-- Sherrie Holcomb (, April 15, 2000.

It went into the archives under uncategorized. Gerbil

Just in case, highlight the address, under edit click copy, highlight the location box, click paste under edit. Then all you have to do it hit enter.

-- Gerbil (, April 15, 2000.

It is under "uncategorized" and the topic line is stomach tube. Go to the bottom of the list to find it and work your way up.

-- Colleen (, April 15, 2000.

We had a lamb this season with the same problem. We tubed and sucked the nose and windpipe and talked and sang. The silly thing died after 5 weeks of this. From what I could gather from my foster son the vet, they most likely will never be able to eat on their own unless you hand feed for life. He thought it also sounded like the defect might carry over with the digestion system. Which means it may not have been able to take care of things right anyway. But he didn't tell us that till we were already attached to the thing and had given him a name. He died from breathing problems. Good luck and I hope it is better than ours.

-- Susie (, April 17, 2000.

Hey Julie, any update? We're all curious to hear how things went.

-- Colleen (, April 18, 2000.

Thanks for all your help, the tube feeding went great but the fool thing died anyway. He had stopped getting up and got to the point where I couldnt prop him up anymore and faded fast from there. At least he didnt die from lack of food!

-- Julie (, April 18, 2000.

Julie , your not the only one who does these silly things .I feel bad for the underdog !I take them home and spend a fortune on them in money and time and then they die .I tell myself I did all I could and at least they had the best life they could of with me .Anyone else would shoot them or let them just wither away without trying.

-- Patty Gamble (, April 18, 2000.

This is my department, even thought I am sorry it is too late for that unlucky calf. First, you need to buy a tube feeder from the co- op (price around $8.00). The feeder should have a round ball at the end of it. Don't buy it if it doesn't. Also it should be stiff tubing. When you put it in its mouth put it over the tounge. Place your hand around its throat and kind of pinch its esophagus. Not it cut off the air but to feel for the ball at the end of the feeder. If you cannot feel the ball moving up and down when you move the feeder in its throat, it is in the wrong place. Their should be no coughing. Wait a minute or two for before you start the milk flowing. And certainly don't give very much at one time. They really just need the water or pedialyte, milk can wait for later. If you have any questions you can e-mail me. And please, be gentle with the whole process, you don't want to rupture throat or stomach.

-- Beth (, April 19, 2000.

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