Continued from last post…
Our cow, Blush, had delivered a bull calf (Maroon) just a couple days after Princess had her bull calf (Duke). Blush is a good milker, she over-produces milk for the first few months until her baby is old enough to take it all.
Duke had only been nursing on the front two teats. The front side of Princess’s bag was normal while the backside was looking like an over-inflated inner tube. She would have to swing her bag as she walked to get her back legs around the swollen udder.
We are going to try to convince Blush that it would be a idea to adopt Duke and share the milk production until both calves are big enough to survive without creating a ‘bottle baby’.
In the first step, we moved Blush, her baby Maroon, and Duke into a pen in the barn. Blush was not real happy that hungry Duke was messing around her udder looking for a hand-out. We fluffed up hay in the manger for Blush, and while she was busy eating, Duke drank all the milk she had in her udder.
It takes between 20 and 30 minutes for Duke to sneak in a good dinner.
Every meal time will be the same for the next few days to see if Blush decides that the two babies will become her business to feed.
The two calves are good pen-mates, they play and sleep together. They are learning to eat hay and calf manna pellets between meals to keep their bellies full.
Blush is still pushing Duke away when we are not there to monitor the feeding. I will update the adoption process as we find out.