Essential Guide to Calving
By Heather Smith Thomas
Storey Books, 2007
Every cattle farmer -- from the keeper of a family milk cow to the rancher overseeing a large herd -- will gain confidence and control by becoming more knowledgeable about calving. Healthy pregnancies, safe births, and thriving calves are critical to every cattle operation, and in remote farm locations, the veterinarian is not always readily available. Even if the vet is nearby, the farm's finances will be healthier if the farmer can oversee most of the calving process.
Heather Smith Thomas, an expert on livestock with decades of firsthand experience, covers every routine situation likely to arise before, during, and after calving. And when the calving process is out of the ordinary, Thomas guides the farmer through pregnancy problems, difficult deliveries, recognizing when to call in a vet, and postpartum complications. Her thorough coverage of what to expect in every situation gives farmers the knowledge they need to care personally for their cows.
The second half of the book is dedicated to ensuring that every calf gets off to a healthy start. Thomas helps farmers work with cows reluctant to nurse, substitute mothers, and frail calves. A complete chapter on calfhood illnesses explains warning signs and offers tips on prevention and treatment.
As people return to farming in growing numbers, the demand for safe, humane livestock knowledge continues to increase. Farmers will turn to this reliable volume again and again as they welcome each new calf.