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Discussion Starter #1
Sigh. I need encouragement. I had to call the AI tech again. This will be our third try with a total of $230 invested, not to mention raising this heifer for 18 months. I’m losing heart. Is it even worth it? My husband told me today I should learn to AI. Maybe I should. But...ew. And...when would I do this?? And...ew.
 

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Update: sorry for not posting an update on this. I forgot to check back. So my AI guy, super nice guy, invited my heifer over to hang out with his bull. After 4 weeks, he checked her and confirmed that he thought she was about two weeks along. Then he insisted she stay another couple weeks so we didn't risk losing the fetus in the bumpy ride home. THEN, I said he was a nice guy right?, he invited me, my dad and my brother over for a day-long AI seminar during which he let us palpate and attempt to AI some of his cows. Y'all. it was gross, but also engrossing if you know what I mean? It will take lots of practice for me to get the hang of it...my tech invited me back in the spring when he expects things to really take off for him.
 

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When you don't want the danger of having a large bull or stallion around AI is the best option. Even though the AI is more hit or miss than having nature take it's course it's the best for you.

As you found, doing AI is not as easy as it seems. Has your tech been doing AI for an extended period of time?
 

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Yes my tech has been in the business for years. His wife confided in me that he is really looking for an apprentice bc of health problems. And I’ll certainly post a pic when baby arrives. Mid to late July is the due date. Praying all goes well.
 

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Nah-he lives too far away for me to help him much. Plus it was a real challenge for me. I was probably the least successful student that day. I think it had a lot to do with my lack of strength and aggression. I was the only female in the group and he kept warning us to be gentle. I guess i was too gentle. I couldn't feel anything .
 

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Discussion Starter #12
Came home to this after church today, which means the second AI took, and NOT the six week long sleepover date. Still a little early for the aug 28 date.

Next question: tell me what you know about calf sharing and how to proceed. I was expecting this calf in mid-July. I have a trip to Honduras planned for the first week of June. Stressing a little...

 

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That would be a lot early if the due date was July or August depending on when she took. From what I understand premie animal babies are in a world of hurt if they're born early.

What is calf sharing?

As long as someone is there to take care of Mom, your trip should be fine. Long because you'll be missing out on baby growing up.

Boy or girl?
 

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Discussion Starter #14
The calf is from artificial insemination last August that we did not believe was successful. Bull calf perfectly healthy. Cow is Jersey Holstein cross so I expect her to produce loads of milk. More than this little fellow can handle. The problem will be compounded when I am out of town. Calf sharing, from what I understand, is when you allow the calf to take as much milk as it wants so that your milking load is decreased. I am thinking I will need to take on another calf to get me through the week while I’m away and also to lessen the milking burden.
 

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Yeah, I figured out the AI part. It was the timing that was throwing me if the calf was early. But if the first AI or even the second then the timing is about right.

OK, now I get your concern. Do you think she will even take on another calf?
 

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Discussion Starter #16
Sorry it’s taken so long to respond. We had another calf but the deal fell through. My solution is this now: milk her in the mornings. Keep the calf on her 24/7. Transport them both to my dad’s farm about 4 miles away so he can keep a watch on her while I’m gone. He will milk her and/or put one of his calves on her if the need arises. I was going to transport her to my dad’s for rebreeding anyway.
 

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That sounds like an excellent resolution to your dilemma. Both of them with someone who knows cattle and will pick up right away that something is off.

Did you originally get her from your Dad?
 
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