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close this bookEthnoveterinary Medicine in Asia - Ruminants (IIRR, 1994, 143 p.)
View the document(introduction...)
View the documentCollaborating organizations
View the documentParticipants and workshop staff
View the documentHow to use this manual
View the documentLack of appetite
View the documentFever
View the documentCoughs and colds
View the documentDiarrhea
View the documentDehydration
View the documentBloat
View the documentConstipation
View the documentPoisoning
View the documentInternal parasites: Stomach and gut worms
View the documentLiverflukes
View the documentTick infestation
View the documentScabies (mange)
View the documentLice
View the documentFungus infections of the skin
View the documentInfectious diseases
View the documentFoot rot
View the documentEye diseases
View the documentWounds
View the documentBleeding
View the documentSnake bite
View the documentSprains
View the documentDifficulty in urinating
View the documentHousing
View the documentFeeding
View the documentMineral deficiency
View the documentBreeding
View the documentPregnancy and birthing
View the documentCare of mother animals after birthing
View the documentCare of newborn
View the documentUdder infection
View the documentDecreased milk flow

Care of mother animals after birthing

Little should be done to interfere with the natural birthing process. The calf should be allowed to suckle the mother immediately. This helps expel the placenta or afterbirth.


Feed for the mother after calving

Any of the following mixtures can be given to the mother immediately after calving. They act as a uterine tonic, help cleanse the uterus, expel the placenta and dispel gas from the rumen of the mother.

· Grains: Finger millet (Eleusine coracana) seeds. Sorghum (Sorghum vulgare) seeds. Millet (Pennisetum typhoideum) seeds. Wheat (Triticum aestivum). Rice (Oryza saliva).

Cook 1 kg of any of these grains with about twice as much water to make a gruel (porridge). Then take the following ingredients:

Cumin (Cuminum cyminum) seeds. Bishop's weed (Trachyspermum ami) seeds. Fennel (Foeniculum vulgare) seeds. Black pepper (Piper nigrum) seeds. Fenugreek (Trigonella foenum-graecum) seeds. Asafoetida (Ferula assa-foetida) gum.

Pound together 10 g of each of these ingredients with 50 g of brown sugar. Mix the powder into the gruel and cook. Feed the whole amount to the mother cow twice a day for 1 week after the birth. For sheep and goats, use half of these quantities. (India. 1, 2, 3, 4, 5)

· Asafoetida (Ferula assa-foetida) gum. Bishop's weed (Trachyspermum ami) seeds. Cloves of garlic. Brown sugar.

Grind together 50 g of each of these ingredients. Divide into 3 equal parts. Feed to the mother cow in the morning and evening and the following morning. Wait 1 day, then repeat the treatment once. Use half these amounts for goats and sheep. (India. 1, 2, 3, 4)

· Mix 3 teaspoons of fenugreek (Trigonella foenum graecum) seeds with 1 kg of cereal and ½ kg of brown sugar. Cook together with 2 liters of water. Give this amount once a day to milking cattle. Use half this amount for sheep and goats. (India. 1, 2, 3, 4)

Boil 500 g of linseed (Linum usitatissimum) seeds in 1-2 liters of water until half the water remains. Drench 500 ml of the liquid. Repeat once a day for 3 days. This helps the mother gain weight after birthing. For goats and sheep, use 200 g of seeds. (India. 1, 2, 3, 5)

· 2 thumb-sized dried ginger rhizomes (20 g).
30 g (1 handful) Peucedenum graveolens dried seeds.
30 g Trachyspermum ami (bishop's weed) dried seeds.
30 g Trigonella foenum-graecum? (fenugreek) dried seeds.
20 g Nigella sativa (black cumin) dried seeds.
20 g Asparagus racemosus (asparagus) dried roots.
20 g Bamboo leaves (dried).
10 g Saraca indica (ashoka tree) dried bark.
10 g Pedalium maurex dried leaf, stem or fruit.

These quantities are enough for 2 doses for a cow or buffalo (use half the dosage for a sheep or goat). Grind these ingredients together to make a powder. Boil in 1 liter of water until half of the water remains. Separate the liquid and give the liquid as a lukewarm drench twice a day for 710 days after the birth. (Northern and Western India. 1, 2, 3, 5)

· You can use the solid pulp left after preparing the remedy above. Mix it with 100-200 g brown sugar or 300-500 g of boiled linseed (Linum usitatissimum) seeds and feed it to the mother animal. (India. 1, 2, 3, 5)

Improved nutrition to increase milk production

Farmers feed the mother animals with green fodder, concentrates (such as rice bran, copra, molasses and groundnut cake) and other feed-stuffs that are rich in energy, protein, minerals and vitamins. Farmers in Indonesia give the water used to boil vegetables. This improved diet increases milk production.

The table at the end of this section contains examples of feed given to mother animals after birth. The quantities listed are for cows and buffaloes. Use half these quantities for sheep and goats.

Specific medicinal plants to increase milk production

These remedies stimulate milk production. See Decreased milk flow (page 141) for further remedies.

· Provide fresh leaves of Leptadenia reticulata as feed. (Throughout India. 1, 2, 3, 4, 5)

· Grind together 3-4 handfuls of fresh Leptadenia reticulata leaves, 10 seeds of black pepper (Piper nigrum) and 50 g of brown sugar. Feed this to a mother cow or buffalo 1-2 times a day until the milk production increases. Give half this amount to goats and sheep. (India. 1, 2, 3, 4, 5)

· Cut Launaea pinnatifida (pathri) grass and feed to the animal. Give as much as the animal will eat. (Maharashtra, India. 1, 2, 3, 4)

Examples of feed given to mother animals after birth

Scientific name

Common name




Moringa oleifera



As much as animal will eat

Feed (India)

Dolichos uniflorus



1 kg

Soak in water overnight. Feed in the morning. (India)

Ricinus communis


Fresh leaves

3 handfuls

Feed (India)

Cocos nucifera


Pulp of nut

3-4 nuts

Feed once a day(India, Indonesia)

Crotolaria juncea

Sun hemp

Fresh leaves

3-4 handfuls

Feed 2-3 times a week(India)

Glycine max


Waste from making tofu (tahu, bean curd)

3-4 handfuls


Eggs and honey

10 eggs and ¼ kg honey

Feed once a week for 1 or 2 weeks. (Indonesia)

Manihot esculenta



As much as animal will eat

Peel the skin, cut into pieces, air-dry for 3-4 days. Feed.

Mangifera indica


Peels, ground kernels, leaves

As much as animal will eat

Feed. (India)

Copra, rice bran, copra meal, molasses(concentrates)

As much as animal will eat

Feed either alone or mixed together. (India, Indonesia, Philippines)

Sauropus androgynus

Katuk (Indonesian)


1 kg

Boil leaves in 1 liter of water. Add 1 teaspoon of salt. Feed leaves and water every 2 days for 1 week. Continue as long as needed. This dosage is for sheep and goats. (Indonesia)

Carica papaya



2 leaves

Boil leaves in water. Feed leaves and water every 2 days for 1 week. (Indonesia)

Artocarpus heterophyllus



5-10 kg per day

Feed to animal with grass for 2-3 days. (Sri Lanka)

Bassia latifolia


Dried flowers

1 fistful (50 g)

Feed once a day. (India)