Dhana has mastitis

Dhana gave birth to Lani Moo on January 15th.  It was a difficult birth–Dhana was in labor for almost 3 days.  When her water finally broke and the little hoofies appeared, we decided to go ahead a pull the calf out.  Two neighbor kids, Tristan and Devon were there for the birth, but unfortunately Billy asked Tristan to get a towel and he was gone when Lani Moo actually came out, so Tristan missed the birth.  Dhana had severe afterbirth pains and I gave her a dose of banamine, but she was almost delirious with pain.  She rejected her calf and was almost viscous to poor little Lani Moo.  Fortunately Dhana’s Mom, Rain was staying with us and had plenty of milk so we let Rain nurse her own calf, Makani as well as Lani Moo.  After several days, Dhana was still aggressive whenever we let her see her calf and I ended up calling our vet, Dr. Briskey.  I explained the situation and he diagnosed that we had a ghost in the barn.  He said that he could probably get rid of the ghost but warned me to stay out of the barn when he was doing it.  Once he gave the “all clear” I went into the barn and showed Dhana her calf again.  She was totally motherly and I felt comfortable letting her have her calf in her stall.

That’s not the end of this saga, however.  Dhana had trouble coming into her milk (she’s a first time Mom) and three of her four quarters ended up having various degrees of mastitis.  I milked her about four times a day, getting up in the middle of the night and also gave her my immune stimulant tincture, usnea every two hours.  Two of the quarters cleared up with this treatment before I ran out of usnea.  So I gave in and dosed her with a pharmaceutical anti-biotic.  But even with several follow up doses, the milk from that quarter tasted salty and ended up being dog food.

Then three days ago a different quarter suddenly flared up and was hard and hot.  My cow guru, Wayne, told me to call a vet.  I had to dose Dhana with banamine because she showed signs of pain, and also infused the quarter with antibiotics.  The vet just came today to see her and said he thinks it is a Strep infection and she just needs a few more infusions.  That is better than other things such as e-coli or staph, so we are relieved.  I’ve actually tried infusing it with a berberis made from Oregon grape roots, but it didn’t seem to help.  So although I do feel like a failure having to resort to pharmaceuticals, it is probably the best option for the time being.

Dhana's Mom, Rain, is a Jersey and her Dad is a Holstein

We don’t have a video of Dhana giving birth, but here is a video of Dhana’s Mom, Rain giving birth last fall to little Makani:

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~ by Anuttama on May 29, 2010.

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