Bloated heifer calf- eats alittle : LUSENET : Countryside : One Thread

This is my first time on this site, but I like what I saw and heard. I have a 35 day old calf that was eating very wellup until 2-days ago. She'll drink only 2qts in the A.M. and then appears to bloat somewhat. Did have some loose stool last night. Seems constipated. She did get some grain for the older heifers but not much, could this cause her to bind up, she was eating hay and 22% calf grain before this happened.

-- Sherry (, January 16, 2002


Hi Sherry,

how do you know she is bloaty? Is there a nice lump above her backbone and is her abdomen tight as a drum? She could get a bit bloaty from a change in feed, or from overeating her current feed. If she is still eating and you think she is bloaty, then feed her just dry hay and water and her bottle. Constipation and the runs don't exactly go together. If you are really worried, give her just dry hay and water for a day or two and see if she gets more comfortable. She will not starve, I promise.

Bloaty cattle don't eat much, exhibit a lot of discomfort, wear one of their stomachs on the side but above their back bone and mostly don't belch or regurgitate to chew cud. If you are certain of the bloat, tie a chunk of wood in her mouth like a horse bit...this helps with belching. Or put a tube down her throat to vent the foam, or put a bit of detergent or mineral oil down her throat through the tube....or a commercial anti bloat fluid. But if she is alive and eating and it is bloat, just cut her back to dry grass hay and water for a spell. Bloat is usualy caused by too much protein too fast and the subsequent foaming inside the gut as the microibes metabolize the protein. The resulting gas is trapped in a protein laden fluid foam and since the bubbles are so small, they build up faster than she can belch or send it the other way.

Good Luck.


-- Oscar H. Will III (, January 16, 2002.

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