Small Intestinal Tears associated with Sudden Death in Two Heifers and One Cow with Posterior Presentation of the Offspring
Keywords:bovine, dystocia, peritonitis, calving, case reports, clinical aspects, cows, heifers, parturition complications, small intestine, sudden death, trauma
Two heifers and one cow died shortly after calving: all three calved with the calf in posterior presentation. The first heifer was examined for recumbency and shock, and died despite therapy, while the second heifer died acutely without being examined premortem. The adult cow died from acute peritonitis three days after an uncomplicated standing left-flank cesarean-section. At necropsy, all animals had ruptured intestines and hyperacute peritonitis with digestive content free in the abdominal cavity. No signs of trauma were seen in the uterus and vagina of the two heifers. The uterine suture and uterine involution were considered normal in the cow that underwent the C-section. This is the first report of perforated intestines secondary to posterior presentation during calving without trauma of the reproductive tract. Although the precise physiopathology of this abnormality is still unknown, entrapment of the small intestine between the uterus and the pubis of the cow, and falling down during expulsion of the calf, might explain the cause.