Bovis ISSN 2398-2993

Calving injuries - to the calf

Contributor(s): Mike Reynolds , Tim Potter

Introduction

  • Dystocial calves alive at birth experience higher physiological stress, reduced transfer of passive immunity and higher morbidity and mortality.
  • Perinatal calf mortality has been associated with delivery of calves after hips were locked, when extraction had been forced, or through induction of trauma when the head of the calf was within the pelvic canal during the first obstetric examination.
  • On delivery, clearing of the airways and establishment of spontaneous breathing, the neonatal calf should be checked for injuries incurred during the birthing process.
    • These include:
      • Soft tissue injuries.
      • Bruising.
      • Vertebral, rib and limb fractures. 

Fractures

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Other common injuries

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Adjunctive therapy

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Further Reading

Publications

Refereed Papers

  • Recent references from PubMed and VetMed Resource.
  • Funnell B J & Hilton W M (2016) Management and prevention of dystocia. Vet Clin Food Anim (32) pp 511–522.
  • Murray C F, Duffield T F, Haley D B, Pearl D L et al (2016) The Effect of Meloxicam NSAID Therapy on the Change in Vigor, Suckling Reflex, Blood Gas Measures, Milk Intake and Other Variables in Newborn Dairy Calves. Journal of Veterinary Science & Animal Husbandry 4 (1).
  • Barrier A C, Haskell M J, Birch S, Bagnall A et al (2013) The impact of dystocia on dairy calf health, welfare, performance and survival. The Veterinary Journal (195) pp 86–90.
  • Murray C F & Leslie K E (2013) Newborn calf vitality: Risk factors, characteristics, assessment, resulting outcomes and strategies for improvement. The Veterinary Journal (198) pp 322–32.
  • Hudson C, Whay  &, Huxley J (2008) Recognition and management of pain in cattle. In Practice (30) pp 126-134.
  • Lombard J E, Garry F B, Tomlinson S M & Garber L P (2007) Impacts of Dystocia on Health and Survival of Dairy Calves. J Dairy Sci (90) pp 1751–1760.
  • Farrow C S (1999) Calving Chain Fractures. Vet Clin Food Anim (15) pp 221-230.
  • Schuijt  G (1990) Iatrogenic fractures of ribs and vertebrae during delivery in perinatally dying calves: 235 cases (1978–1988). Journal of the American Veterinary Medical Association (197) pp 1196–1202.


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