Sometimes in cattle, as with people, it becomes necessary to help babies be born.  We were not expecting to have to, but occasionally nature needs a little … pull.

We had been waiting on our last calf of the season to be born for about a week and a half when I got a call from  my husband.  He was in the pasture with the kids and needed me to come quick.  The calf was coming, but the cow was having trouble.  Lyn was sure he had seen that the calf’s tongue was swollen, indicating that the calf had suffocated in the birth canal and was surely dead.  But either way, dead or alive, the calf had to come out … Mama had to survive.  So we drove her to the coral on foot  and let me tell you … cows can run fast even when they’re in labor.  I quickly realized just how out of shape I am.

Once we got her in the chute my husband reached in and put the pulling chains around the calf’s front feet.  Mama had stopped pushing so it was all up to us.  I began to say a prayer.  “Please, God, don’t let him have seen a swollen tongue.  Please let this little calf survive.”  I didn’t want to lose another calf.  He pulled, but the calf wouldn’t budge.  So he tied his rope to the chain and leveraged it around himself.  He leaned back and we watched as the little calf slowly emerged and slapped to the ground.

My kids and I are standing there with our mouths open.  This is our first time to see a calf being pulled, but thankfully, Lyn had done this before.  He told me to  grab the calf’s back legs, so I climbed the railing and reached over for the feet.  She was heavy and not just a little slimy.  We swung the little calf back and forth a little trying to clear the airway.  When we put her on the ground I was extremely overjoyed and very thankful when her little ears started to twitch.  What a beautiful sight!  She was fine!  We pulled her under the fence into the pen and let Mama go.  We quickly vacated the area so Mama could do what she does without us getting in the way.

Whew!  We breathed a sigh of relief, I said a prayer of thanksgiving and we went to the house.  Another successful day on the farm.

My friends, there are several nevers in life; never lose faith, never cease to see the beauty in all things and never, never underestimate the power of prayer.

Love and Farmgirl hugs,