Let me introduce you to the newest member of the calf pen, a F1 Bradford bull calf Hagan. His mother was a pure breed registered Brahman cow while his father was pure breed registered Hereford bull. The Bradford breed has been prized here in South Texas as being one of the top choice of mama cows, So how did I come to own little Hagan.
Few weeks back a rancher came driving up to the house with little Hagan in the back of his pickup truck. At first glance I noticed that both of his eyes were cloudy and I knew he couldn’t see. I waved my hand in front of his face and he had no reaction. I wasn’t sure if his blindness would be permanent or not.
The other rancher had been bottle feeding him for a few days after his mother had rejected him. So I knew he wouldn’t be a problem to feed from a bottle. My only concern was his eyes. I figured that he just had an infection causing them to cloud and he could improve without damage.
I started him on a four day series of penicillin injections and later after dusk I went out to check on him and see if he would react to a flashlight. He was walking around in the dark bumping into the fence but once I shined the light on him he stopped. I knew the Bradford bull was seeing some and there was a good chance for full sight.
The next morning it raining and it was my first time to bottle feed him. All the other calves were under their sheds waiting for me to bring their bottles. Not Hagan. He was out in the middle of the pen walking around in circles getting poured on. He couldn’t smell his way around and lost the other calves, but during bottle feeding I got him back with the group and he made sure not to get too far away.
The following day his eyes started to clear and he was gaining more sight. After a week his eyes completely cleared and he could see just fine.
He is a little fellow just about 70 pounds but I ‘m sure he won’t stay little for long. F1 Bradfords bulls or any calf that has enough Brahman in them are always neat to bottle raise. They start out as these tiny little tots and just keep on growing. I have raised Brahman and Bradfords before and they always amaze me how they start out so small and turn in to these big calves. They go through these over night growth spurts making them fun to raise, You walk out one morning and you’re shocked how big that little calf has gotten.
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