Maternity paresis or lack of calcium in cows


Postpartum paresis in cows is a complex and life-threatening animal disease, which is characterized by a sharp decrease in calcium. Occurs in the first 72 hours after calving. Why and how to prevent illness, let's find out together.

What kind of disease and how does it occur?

Postpartum paresis most often occurs in high-yielding or aged cows, the disease is rarely found in young heifers. The sick cow has lost its appetite in the first days of calving, it develops nervousness, muscle spasms appear, and body temperature drops. If in time the animal does not begin to heal, the partial paralysis of the cow overcomes the cow and it falls with its head thrown back. This is a very dangerous stage of the disease, in 70% of cases without timely treatment the animal dies.

Symptoms of postpartum paresis:

  • appetite is lost, there is no chewing gum;
  • body tremors appear, the temperature drops;
  • instability in the legs, muscle spasms, paralysis;
  • excitement of the psyche, the cow starts mooing, shaking his head, beating the horns of the wall, grinding his teeth;
  • paralysis of the pharynx and mouth, loss of tongue, severe salivation;
  • depression of the condition, lacrimation;
  • termination of the internal secretion, including emptying.
Postpartum paresis: 1-severe form; 2-light form.


Today, among specialists there are several explanations for why this complex disease occurs. The first option is a sharp decrease in blood sugar, hypoglycemia. The second option is enhanced activity of the pancreas, resulting in a large amount of insulin. In connection with these opinions and confirmations in practice, one of the fastest methods of treating the problem is to inject 40 ml of a 20% glucose solution. However, there are other causes of birth paresis:

  • overfeeding with concentrates;
  • long keeping of an animal without walking;
  • cold and draft during calving;
  • inhibition of the function of the parathyroid glands;
  • strong nervous excitement during childbirth;
  • shift carbohydrate and protein metabolism.

Treatment methods

At the first signs of the onset of the disease, one should resort to the main method of treatment for Schmidt - pumping air into the udder. This procedure is performed with a special Evers device.

  1. The animal is laid on its side, the udder is stretched, a clean towel is enclosed, and the nipples are disinfected with alcohol.
  2. Then from each nipple gives a little milk streams to clean the canal.
  3. Air inflating is performed from the lower nipples with the device. Air injection is stopped after the voltage of the udder.
  4. Then nipples are tied up with a ribbon or a bandage. You can not use thread or rope, they can deaden the fabric udder.
  5. Dressing with the nipples can be removed immediately after the animal gets up. See the video for more details.

Another method of treatment is to inject a glucose solution into a vein. Apply 250-500 ml of calcium gluconate solution. After immediate treatment, as a rule, the cow gets up on its feet within 30 minutes. In this case, the animal invigorates, takes to food, renews the gum, goes to the toilet. If the cow does not get up within the first hours after the treatment, the therapeutic measures should be repeated.


Postpartum paresis can be avoided if you follow some preventive measures.

  • Steal a cow to give regularly hay of cereal grasses, for example, timothy or meadow bluegrass. But alfalfa and clover should be reduced.
  • Entering vitamin D for a day or two before calving.
  • A week before giving birth, give Buren a sugar solution (300 grams per 1 liter of water).
  • Every day, the animal must walk in the fresh air.




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