I wrote a while back about a calf that I brought back to life by using cayenne. Here is the final chapter of that story. And I have a request for anyone who has seen this kind of thing happen to please share your experience.
The original incident happened on the second of February and in a couple of days from the first notice, he was up, eating, and doing well. A couple of days after that I turned him back out into the pasture. That was before I wrote the first blog…..I was sure that he was fine. A little over a week later I noticed that he was not looking good. I brought him back into the barn.
A few days later, I got present to the fact that the water that was provided for him was not going down and that his poop was really dry. He was dehydrating himself. He was eating well, hay and grain, but would not drink.
I bought some buttermilk and added it to a gallon of warm water, but I had to force it down him with a turkey baster. He wanted it and sucked it up readily but even with the old trick of putting my fingers in his mouth to cause him to suck, he would not drink. He tried to tear off my fingers like tearing hay. He sucked a little but would not continue. I tried putting a calf nipple into the water. No luck with that either. I gave him Kombucha. He ate the SCOBY but he would not drink. I doused him several times a day with cayenne. I put molasses in the water. Nothing helped.
I watched him eat with enthusiasm, but he just would not drink. I forced water several times a day but he was not getting better.
As he got weaker and could not get up, I became concerned about the circulation in his legs. So my daughter, one son, and I made a sling with an old blanket and tied it off between two sawhorses. When I let him down that night I knew that I would have to figure something so I could lift him alone.
The next morning I found my fence stretcher and braced the rafter of my old barn and strung him up. He barely moved his feet. He ate well and I forced more water and buttermilk down him. To see him eat, it would appear that he was healthy, but something was not right.
The next morning, I had to put him down. He was too weak to even lift his head. From the time he came back into the barn to the time he was dead was less than a week. And I do not know why.
When I butchered him out I noticed that the gall bladder was stretched to the size of a softball. I do not know what that means but I don’t think it is right. I will be feeding the meat to my dogs so all is not lost.
So if any of you have experience with something like this, please comment so that I can learn something and I will not have to watch that happen again.