Interesting bovine medicine cases (Proceedings)


Case 1: 5-year old Angus cow, calved 3 weeks ago

Case 1

• 5-year old Angus cow

• Calved 3 weeks ago

o History

• Stumbling/knuckling in both rear limbs

• Mild ataxia that had worsened

• Weight loss

• Calved unassisted

• Treated with Banamine, calcium, Nuflor

• Was febrile at referring veterinarian

• Received results of 2 CBC's and a serum chemistry also

o Physical exam

•103.5 F

• 110 bpm, 45 breaths per minute

• Mucous membranes, hydration status WNL

• Rumen contractions 3/2 minutes

• Enlarged pre-scapular, pre-femoral, submandibular lymph nodes

o Neurologic exam

• No cranial nerve deficits

• Bright, alert, responsive (visual)

• Knuckling, stumbling in both rear limbs

• Ataxic (lower motor neuron)

• Loss of conscious proprioception

• Diagnostics

• Condition deteriorated over a 48 hour period

• Became recumbent

• Tachycardia and tachypnea became worse

• Results

Case 2

o 15 month-old Angus bull presented for lethargy, anorexia and distended abdomen

o Lethargy started about 1 month, anorexia about 2 weeks and abdominal distension about 10 days prior to presentation

o Bull out on pasture with cows

o No prior history of illness

o Failed a fertility test about 2 weeks prior to presentation

o Urination and defecation not noted by owner

o Physical exam

• T = 100.5 F, P = 90, R = 40

• Mucous membranes possibly pale

• Heart is rapid, but normal in sound

• Lung sounds are increased

• Abdomen is markedly distended bilaterally and ventrally

• Negative on grunt test but does not go down with withers pinch

• Lymph nodes normal

• No sand-like crystals on prepuce

• Rectal – urinary bladder not palpable, lot's of empty "space", rumen small and collapsed, can only palpate caudal pole of kidney – beyond reach

• No stool

o Problems

• Anorexia

• Lethargy

• Abdominal distension

• Tachycardia, tachypnea, increased lung sounds

• Possible abdominal pain

• Abnormal rectal exam – no stool

o Diagnostics?

o Results

o Interpretation

• Severe azotemia

• Electrolyte imbalance

•Consistent with GI obstruction?

o Further diagnostics?

• Abdominocentesis

• Results

• Creatinine

o Exploratory

o Necropsy

Case 3

o 3 year-old bull presented for bloody, severe diarrhea

o 7 days duration. Out on pasture with cows, maintained a good appetite

o Supplemented with 40% range cubes. Current on vaccinations/deworming

o No other animals affected. Raised from calf on farm

o Physical examination found bull was afebrile, actually had bloody, watery diarrhea with small black flecks of a hard material

o Oral and preputial erosions.

o Rectal examination – very roughened, inflamed mucosa

o Differentials

o Diagnostics

o Treatment

o Outcome

Case 4

o 3 year old Angus cow presented in lateral recumbency – found down in morning after seemingly being normal the day before = pregnant to calve in spring

o Owner doesn't actually see the cattle very often

o Found 2 others down earlier in morning, disposed of them (shot them)

o Had one unexplained death about 1 week prior to finding these in recumbency

o About 70 others in group

o Group of cows affected were purchased in summer

o Owner describes this group as slightly thin (when owner admits it, they are probably VERY thin)

o Put out during the summer to graze and calve this spring

o Presented cow is about a 3.5/9 BCS

o Bottom line = hungry cattle grazing less than ideal pasture this fall

o Owner puts out about 2 pounds of 40% cubes per head 2 to 3 times per week. No hay supplementation.

o Physical exam

• Temp. = 100.5, Respiration = 35, Pulse = 70

• Bright and aware of surroundings

• Tries to get up, but winds up lateral

• Normal stool out behind cow in trailer

• No urine passed and none in trailer

• No neurologic deficits detected

• No evidence of trauma

• Can sit sternal

• Generalized paresis

• Mucous membranes, lymph nodes, eyes, muzzle, all normal

o Causes of generalized weakness

o Diagnostics


• CSF tap

• Blood film

• Serum Chemistry

• CBC with Fibrinogen

• Urinalysis

• gp51 BLV

o Results

• Blood film

• Total protein/PCV

• CBC/fibrinogen

• Serum chemistry

• Could not get urine!

o Euthanized

• Results

Case 5

o 3-week old calf presented for lethargy of about 1 weeks' duration

o With dam in pasture, no other calves affected

o Normal, unassisted birth

o Physical examination: pale mucous membranes, dark, runny stool, weak suckle reflex, no evidence of dehydration or sepsis

o Diagnostics: PCV: 10!, total protein = albumin =

• Hematology: non-regenerative anemia

• Chemistry: unremarkable

o Differentials

• Blood loss anemia

• Where?

o Bone marrow aspirate

• Iron deficiency

o Abomasal ulcer —>chronic blood loss —> iron deficiency —> anemia

o Treatment

Case 6

o 6 month-old crossbred steer

o 3 day history of "bloody stool"

o Had reportedly been treated with amprolium earlier (1week prior) when steer had "loose" stool

o On full feed, but owner took away grain when they noted these signs

o History of "dropped" ear (treated and improved)

o Bright, alert, still eating hay

o Physical exam

• Mucous membranes

• normal

• Temperature

• 1030F

• Heart rate

• 80 bpm

• Respiratory rate

• 30 bpm

• Increased bronchovesicular sounds

• Rumen motility

• 2/2 minutes

• Abdominal contour

• Maybe slight distension on left

• Bruxism

• Feces

o Diagnostics

o Further diagnostics


• Plasma gastrin?

• Ultrasound

o Treatment

o Response

Case 7

o 3-year old Crossbred cow presented for gradually increasing "swelling" of about 10 days duration. The cow calved 3 weeks ago, and has been out on pasture

o Anorexic when offered supplements

o Physical examination found low-grade fever, tachycardia, tachypnea and muffled heart sounds in addition to the ventral edema present in throat-latch and brisket.

o Diagnostics

o Results

o Outcome

Case 8

o 5-year old, Holstein cow

o Presented for acute anorexia, drop in milk production

o Freshened 8 weeks ago

o On TMR

o No periparturient problems noted

o Physical exam

• T=103.0, P=110, R=50

• Dry, crusty nose, no rumen contractions

• Mild abdominal distension, mucous membranes – tacky, CRT > 3 seconds

• "Treading some with hind limbs"

• Normal udder, milk, normal uterus on rectal, however, some distended bowel loops detected, stool, not much, but has some mucous

• No pings/splashes

o Diagnostics

• Abdominal ultrasound

• Abdominocentesis

• Fecal occult blood

• Urinalysis

• Echocardiography

o Results

o Exploratory

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