yes, this question is from a horse person, here goes. Is it better for Sadie to give birth inside her own stall, in the barn (she has a 12 x 12 box stall and an outside run) or out in the pasture? My friend said I should turn her loose out into the pasture so she can have it in the trees, but I think she should be confined to the barn till she has her baby. I have also separated her and Peaches into different corrals so snoopy Peaches doesn't bug her if she to goes into labor. I think a little privacy is in order.
ok, plus, it's easier on me. If every time I go out there I can't see her, I will have to go find her to see if she calved.
It depends. Is your pasture clear of brush? Is the fence calf-tight? Are there predators that could be an issue? Is it small enough you could find her/see her easily if she has a problem?
My cow calves where she chooses. She's birthed in the barn 3 times and twice in the pasture. But, my pastures are small, all grass, and we don't have predator problems. I prefer outside calvings because there is a lot of fluid and yuck during a calving and it's nice to not have to clean it out of the barn.
The pasture is probably the best place for her to calve, if there is grass and plenty of shade. We have lost a calf or two in the pond though. I usually get nervous when my Dexters are in labor and put them in the lot next to the barn.
I vote for the pasture too. I think sometimes if the cow is nervous or fractious and in a tight enclosure she may hurt herself or her calf. In the pasture she will find just the right spot and there won't be any risk of her bumping the calf against the wall as she is pushing him/her out.
Hope Sadie and Peaches are doing great!
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My cows always calve on pasture. I have a 12x12 stall, too, if they should ever calve when it is snowy or something, but knock-on-wood, have never had to use it. I do fence them out of the pasture with the pond, and try to fence them away from my Jersey, who tries to steal calves--although she walks away from her own. I leave the other cows (even steers) in with the calving cow, they seem to respect their privacy and don't bother them.
If you're worried about finding her at night, a headlamp is really cheap, and very convenient. Their LED light really catches the cows' eyes even at a distance.
I'm going against the tide here................ ;D
My cows usually have their calves in the stable. I let them stay out in the pasture until I know they are really close and then I lead them to the stable where I can monitor them easily and assist them if they need it. It makes it easier for me to know exactly where they are so that I can check on them while they are in labor.
I say do whatever feels the most comfortable for you. If you are comfortable leaving her out, then do that. If it makes you feel better to have her confined, then keep her in.
I used to foal all the mares inthe barn, but the cow has a small pasture where i can see her and the option to come into a corral If the weather is bad, or she looks like an at risk candidate, her shelter would be the spot. We should be able to put a monitor on her I can watch fron the house to make sure all is going well. Small investment for great peace of mind...and fun for the grandkids to come watch
Living on a 250,000 acre working ranch, with a JerseybeefX milk cow, sheep,chickens and ducks, 2 Maremma Livestock Guardians, ranchhand husband and a Golden Retriever who doesn't know he is adopted.
well, now I am still not sure which to do. We don't have a grassy pasture, it's scrubby and brushy, about 2 acres fenced. There are juniper trees and sage. Kristy, you would know what it's like, just natural landscape for Central Oregon. There is shade, but it's not even ground, lots of stumps and rocks. There could be predators, but not likely. I would never want my mare to foal in terrain like that, but I guess cows are different?
I can see the reasoning of her being able to move around in a large area. Her outside run is only about 20 x 24. This is a conundrum. I really want to do what's best for her.
Kristy, Peaches is doing great, she is so funny. But you know what I mean about being snoopy. Can't you just see her pestering poor Sadie as she is giving birth.... what's that? what are you doing? who's that? she'd be right in the middle of it all. Once that baby was out she would not leave it alone.
My field isn't much better right now and Sarah had her calf in the field about 2 weeks ago and did just fine. After wards I moved her up top. Do you normally put her up at night and then let her out during the day? I find if I change their patern at calving time it tends to make them nervous. Rosemary is getting ready to calve and she is used to calving in the large pen in the back yard so she started bawling the other day to come out of the field, came thru the cow and calf pen right over to the gate to where she is used to calving and waited for me to let her through. Hasn't made a sound since, and is happy as a clam. So I think routine is the key for the cows, at least it seems to be for mine.
Yes, Peaches LOVES the babies! She drove poor Beauty crazy when she calved. Beauty had to keep running her off. Thankfully Peaches finally got tired of being chased and went about her own business.
Hands down in my opinion, the pasture. To many illnesses and disease in a confined area no matter how clean you think it is. Never mind the possiblitly of it smothering up against a wall while she is having it. Shirla
I have my heifer and due cow separated right now. It means that my Jersey heifer is penned at a friend's place in a pipe horse paddock so she can be AI'd AND so she will leave the cow alone. She has been observed trying to steal calves away. The cow is in a scrubby area about 2 acres with a nice stand of trees where I have laid in some straw.
My DH of 25+ years 2 beautiful daughters Guernsey Moo, Delilah, whom I love more than anyone should love a cow. a pair of Haflingers, a Friesan x Percheron, and a Quarter Horse A couple of Angus beefers a flock of Icelandic Sheep, East Friesian x Rideau Arcott Dairy sheep. Oberhasli Goats Bernese Mountain Dog, Border Collie, Cavalier King Charles Spaniel, Aussie Shepherd Japanese Bobtail Cats,
I prefer inside for calving. We have preditor issues for one. And calving in the barn, you can easily check on her at night. Also if this is her first calf, a smaller area is nice, if you have to assist, and if she is not sure what to do with the calf.
Look at it this way: Either choice is not wrong. Most cows have no problem calving most of the time regardless of where they might be. We have beef cows that calve in the pasture all the time. They have woods they could get hung up in, creeks they could get into (up until recently when we fenced out the creek) and a million things that could go wrong. Rarely does anything go wrong when they calve in the pasture.
On the other hand, I have been putting my Jerseys in the barn to calve now for five years and have never had an issue with that either. The advantages I had to having them inside were mostly advantageous to me. For example, I knew exactly where they were in the middle of the night when I went to check on them, I have electricity and lights in the barn, I don't have to go search for a newborn that has been hidden by a protective mother, the newborns don't roll under the fence and create scenario where I have to find them and get them back to momma cow, etc. It just makes my life easier to have them inside to give birth.
We have had predators attack and kill newborns in the field (in our beef herd) as they were being born and eat them. We also had a calf attacked and scarred for life from a coyote. These are other reasons I take a more hands on approach until my calves are born and get a little bigger.
We have had to pull two Jersey calves. One was too big and one was not positioned correctly. If they had been in the field, it would have made things a lot more difficult for us. Not impossible, but more difficult. Having them in the barn meant we could halter the cow, tie her and do what we needed to do in the one instance. In the other instance, we didn't have to tie her but we had lights at night when it was dark. We lost that calf but saved the momma who would have surely died if she had been outside and I had not been able to check on her regularly and intervene when we did.
With all that said, just like with 100 other issues with cattle, you are going to get a variety of opinions from folks. What I do is read through the opinions, take them all into consideration, and then follow my gut. What's right for me might not be right for someone else and vice versa. You have to do what you are most comfortable with and then take the approach that you have done your best and deal with whatever challenges might arise.
I've had cows calve both places without incident. We put Louise in the barn the day she went into labor and let her have run of a 14 x 22 alley. She had the calf with no problem. I wasn't wild about her having it in the pasture because she's in a 12 acre field that has a pond, a creek, some old farm equipment in it. I didn't want the chance of not being able to find the calf and also...we take the calf away from the dam as soon as it's born so would prefer to be right there at the birthing and it's easier on everyone if she's in the barn.
Post by mamanaturale on Aug 6, 2010 16:05:18 GMT -5
mousse calved in the pasture, but i can vote about the snoopy friend cow.... tira was a pest! we had to run her off from mousse a couple of times. it seemed like mousse would progress then tira would come up and bug her and she would need to get up and find a different spot. in retrospect, i would have penned tira up. that way mousse would have space and we wouldn't have worried about tira.
Brianna married to Ryan, momma to tucker and Jacob 9 egg chickens, 4 geese, 3 ducks, 3 dogs, 3 cats, 2 parakeets, meat chickens, turkeys, and last but most certainly not least: Tiramisu our jersey cow and Mousse our brown swiss.
I calve in a pen up near the barn, I am always moving it , so I can keep a close eye on them, and put lights on the pen area, foaled mares out for years and they were always in a small pen with lights just keep it clean and heavy bedded Suzanne
2 children Steven and Leila
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Lilly a sale barn rescue jersey
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Lettie the salebarn jersey heifer
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