5 month old jersey issue

Deirdre Barber

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I got this girl when she was about 3 weeks old, and bottle-fed her, halter trained her, and take her from pasture to cow shed in the evening, and back out to pasture in the morning. She's in the pasture with 2 goats, and is gaining weight at a good pace. The ultimate goal is to breed her and milk her. My issue now is that ever since her bangs vaccination, she won't come to me when I call. She used to always just walk right up and put her head down so I could put the rope halter on her. I had to leave her in the field one night, even though it was pretty cold (I'm in southern Oregon). I finally got a halter that I leave on her, and have had to leave her lead rope dangling so that I can step on it when I go to bring her in at night. Is she going to be skittish now forever? It's kind of a pain in the butt.
 

Latestarter

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Greetings and welcome to BYH Deirdre! So glad you joined us. There's a wealth of info, knowledge and experience shared in the multitude of threads. Browse around and see what interesting stuff you can find. By all means post away when the desire strikes you, especially if you have questions (provide as much detail/info as possible and pictures truly help)... With all the great folks here, generally someone will respond in no time at all. Please make yourself at home! Meanwhile I'll tag a couple of cow folks who may be able to share some insight. @farmerjan @greybeard @Wehner Homestead @jhm47 @WildRoseBeef @cjc Some aren't on (or don't post) as much as others, but you never know... There are others as well, but I can't recall their names.

Perhaps you'd be willing to stop by the new member area and introduce yourself? https://www.backyardherds.com/forums/new-member-introductions.17/
Oh, if you haven't done so already, PLEASE put at least your general location in your profile. It could be very important if/when you ask for or offer help or advice. You know, climate issues and such. (You did mention it in your post) I recommend at least your state as most folks won't be able to figure out where if you put anything more specific (county, town, street, etc) by itself. Old folks like me :old will never remember & look there first. To add it, mouse hover over Account top right and a drop down will appear. Click on Personal Details and scan down. You'll see the spot for Location. Then go to the bottom and save changes. Thanks! Hope you enjoy the site!
 
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Wehner Homestead

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No. She’s just wary of you from the pain. Get some kind of treats...ours will eat the ones from Tractor Supply that are Apple and Oat by Purina. I found them on Amazon to show you the ones I’m talking about. You’ll need to break them in pieces for a calf that size. They also like leaves from oak and maple trees. Growing up we always fed them to our calves when we got done leading them.

Also focus on positive things. Make sure you do lots of scratching all the places she likes. You want it to be a good experience when she interacts with you for now.

Letting her drag a lead without supervision is very dangerous! She may also feel chased if you are having to get behind her to step on it. We had a calf that drug a rope for a few days and he got worse. I recommend leaving the halter on (If in a paddock where she can’t get hung) and make a small catch pen that you can hook her lead to while she eats feed or gets a treat from you.

If her halter has a ring to clip the lead to, we’ve found you can hook that with a show stick using the hook on the end in a small area.

Good luck! Persevere! Talk to her while you work with her. She will follow your tone. ;)
 

farmerjan

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What @Wehner Homestead said is true. She's mad and a little hurt at the pain. I am assuming that she got a tattoo in her ear also. That's what she is mostly feeling the pain from. How long has it been since you got her bangsed? Take a bucket or a treat, and give her a reason to want to come to you again.
I personally don't have a big problem with leaving a rope on her dragging for a little while, but you need to be sure that the pasture is safe from her getting it caught in brush or something that could get her hung up on.
I use neck chains on my dairy/nurse cows. There is a silver ring that holds it together and it will pull apart if the animal gets it caught and pulls real hard as in a panic situation. Kindof like the kind that are on some key rings where you slide the key around to get it on the ring, but bigger. You can also lengthen the size of the neck area from tighter to looser as the animal gets older so don't have to buy different sizes. I do know that Nasco catalog carries them as do most feed and supply stores that carry alot of dairy animal equipment.
 

WildRoseBeef

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@Wehner Homestead and @farmerjan are absolutely right, this won't last forever, particularly if you don't let it. She's just having trouble trusting you because she now associates you with pain and bad things. You need to gain her trust back and re-establish yourself as a bringer of good things, of good food, good scratches, and a kind voice, and to do that you need to be persistent and not feel sorry for her anymore. She wants you to put that behind you so she can also put that bad experience behind you and learn to trust you again. It'll take time and a good deal of commitment, but she'll come around. Just treat her like a new heifer that has never seen or smelled or known you before.

One thing is to just stand or sit in one spot in the corral or pasture, and let her come to you. Have a bucket of her favourite treats handy, and just stay out there for a bit, talking to her and not doing anything to make her more worried about you than she should be. Eventually she'll get more curious than concerned, and wander over to you. When she does, praise her. Let her sniff your hand at first before you try to touch her (scratch under the chin is a good start, praising her if she lets you). If she withdraws, let her, then coax her back again. End the session on a good note with you walking away, not her. And I'll bet you before you know it you'll have her eating out of your hand and giving her good rub-downs again, though it may take a few days to over a week or so to get back to that again. :)
 
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