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Dr. Berry
Dr. Berry, Veterinarian
Category: Large Animal Veterinary
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Experience:  26 years experience in small and large animal medicine and surgery.
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I have a feeder calf that bloated about 10 days ago. He has

Resolved Question:

I have a feeder calf that bloated about 10 days ago. He has been fed a commercial calf grower ration and grass hay with other calves in the pen. When it first happenned he was pretty severly bloated and very watery scours.
He was not in anny respiratory distress so I immediately separeated him and tookhim off feed. In about 36 hrs he got better and the scours ended.
I slowly started him back on hay at first and then a couple days later introduced him back to the rain ration. On Sunday he bloated again but not as bad. I again took him away from feed. Started him back on hay Monday night and I just offerred him straight oats today. He is still slightly bloated and he refused the oats and is eating limited amounts of hay. this is my daughters 4-H steer.What else can I do. Could it be harware? Is it time to call the vet??
Submitted: 3 years ago.
Category: Large Animal Veterinary
Expert:  Dr. Berry replied 3 years ago.

Dr. Berry :

Hello. I'm Dr. Berry. Thanks for your question. Before starting him back on grain make sure he is eating hay OK. He could have rumen acidosis due to grain overload that is responsible for the bloat condition. The rumen if it becomes acidic will cause loss of the microorganisms in the rumen. Probiotics will help restore the rumen to its normal state. Some rumen stimulant boluses might also help. In addition baking soda mixed with water given by mouth will help counteract rumen acidity. If you give any baking soda with water make sure to let it set a while before giving to allow escape of carbon dioxide from the mixture. Failure to do so will cause a good case of bloat due to carbon dioxide. You need to allow a week or so before trying to start back on grain. When you do start with a small amount and gradually increase the amount over a 2 week period.

Customer :

OK,I'll give it a try.

Customer :

What is the ratio of baking soda? How much? Are you saying to put it in the drinking water so he drinks that instead?

Dr. Berry :

You will have to give the baking soda and water mixture by mouth as a drench or with a dose syringe. He will not drink it just placed in the drinking water. A couple of tablespoons to a pint of water and let sit for several minutes before giving.

Customer :

Thanks for the info. I'll give it a try.

Dr. Berry, Veterinarian
Satisfied Customers: 803
Experience: 26 years experience in small and large animal medicine and surgery.
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