A Prepared Calving Season
I remember reading through endless lists on Pinterest on what to bring to the hospital when I was pregnant with my son. My sister being twelve years older than me gave me her best recommendations and I was over prepared. By the time my daughter arrived I had my packing list fine tuned. When you have what you need, it can bring comfort and peace to an experience that can be borderline traumatic and painful. Being prepared can be a game changer. I find this to be true with both giving birth to babies and calving season.
This year our calves started hitting the ground earlier than expected. My husband was racking his brain to determine if they were the result of a neighbor bull jumping the fence or what might have taken place. All of the calves were healthy and by now they are starting to really grow. I encouraged him to not overthink it too much.
Prior and Proper Preparation
Whether you are far from town or just on the outskirts, you can take it to the bank that nothing bad happens at a convenient time. It is going to be on a night of bad weather when the vet is out of town, perhaps Christmas Eve. You might be nodding your head thinking of a time where this has been true in your life. It is vital to hope for the best, yet plan for the worst. I totally empathize that getting prepared for calving season can sometimes slip your list. It feels like you are still trying to get all of your fall work done when the cute little boogers show up. Speaking of when they’ll show up, here is a gestation calculator that is super handy.
Calving Season Supplies
Whether you are headed into your first calving season or not, I want to make sure you are prepared for the possibilities that lie ahead. There may be situations that you need to call your veterinarian for, others you may be able to safely handle yourself. These supplies will set you up for success.
- Bag of Sugar
- Clean Towels
- Disposable Syringes (20cc)
- 16g x 5/8″ Needles
- Colostrum Replacer
- Calf Tubing Kit
- Multimin 90
- Calving chains
- Calving Jack
- Rope Halter
- OB Gloves
Products to Ask Your Vet About
In case I forgot to mention, I am not a veterinarian. I seriously considered being one, but passing out in the operating room during my internship encouraged me to explore other avenues. With that, I encourage you to have a working relationship with a veterinarian regardless of how many animals you care for. These are products that I keep on hand for calving season after consulting with our veterinarian.
- Bio-Mycin – **Make sure you don’t use in breeding bulls.
- Sulfa Boluses – for calves and for cows.
All of the Calving Ease
With that, I am wishing you all of the calving ease in the world, my friend. There are years when it feels like wreck after wreck due to a certain bull. There are others that slip by uneventfully and you are able to relish the magic of new life. Taking inventory of your supplies and making sure you have what you could potentially need will reduce the stress of situations that may arise. Trust me, I’ve been the one calling around in the middle of the night to see if a neighbor has something I need. Thank goodness for good neighbors.