What to do if a cow ate a plastic bag and possible danger

What to do if a cow ate a plastic bag and possible danger

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Inorganic litter is becoming more common in pastures and cows. These are packages, wrappers, foil, film. Most often, such waste ends up on the pasture with the wind. Eating by animals of a dangerous cellophane "delicacy" threatens serious health problems and even death. What to do when the cow has eaten the plastic bag? Let's figure it out together.

What is the danger to the animal?

Polyethylene and cellophane are transparent moisture resistant film materials. They are equally dangerous to a cow. When it enters the body, the film is not digested, but compressed into a stone. There is a threat of mechanical blockage of the food passages from the stomach and esophagus.

In rare cases, eating a packet by a cow passes without visible disturbances and consequences. Most often this is due to the small size of the foreign body that has entered the body. Polyethylene curls up into a ball and comes out with the feces. If the size of the eaten package is large or the eating of the film took place systematically, there is a threat to the health of the animal.

Risks when cows eat polyethylene.

  1. Diarrhea. It develops with partial blockage of the gastrointestinal tract. Only the liquid content passes through the resulting "cellophane mash". Farmers often confuse this condition with coccidiosis, salmonella, E. coli. Due to the lack of special assistance, the situation is aggravated.
  2. Clogged esophagus and stopping stomach contractions. It is accompanied by constipation, gas formation. The condition threatens with respiratory arrest and death of the cow.
  3. Volvulus. It is characterized by the formation of intestinal nodes.
  4. Complete intestinal obstruction. Gas quickly expands the stomach and intestines. The process is accompanied by impaired blood circulation, oxygen starvation of organs, intoxication.

The only way out in such situations is to remove the plastic bag from the animal's body. But due to the large size of the cow, this becomes problematic. Not all veterinarians agree to such an operation. If cellophane entangled the intestines, help is useless, the animal is taken to slaughter.

What if the cow ate the bag?

Unpleasant and dangerous situation - a cow chews and swallows a plastic bag. A typical farmer's first reaction is to remove the foreign body as quickly as possible. A real execution for the animal begins: its mouth is wide open, a wedge is inserted between the jaws, a hand is inserted into the throat and they are trying to find the end of the film. Also, some owners induce vomiting, hoping that the swallowed packet will come out with the masses. All these actions are erroneous and dangerous, since such "help" can only aggravate the cow's condition, accelerating her death.

Expert opinion

Zarechny Maxim Valerievich

Agronomist with 12 years of experience. Our best summer cottage expert.

So what are you allowed to do? First of all, the affected individual should be separated from the herd. Then the farmer can only watch and hope. The time for complete digestion of food for a cow, calf, bull is about 70 hours.

For 3 days, you need to carefully monitor the condition and feces. The best outcome of the situation is the natural exit of the plastic bag. In consultation with your veterinarian, you can stimulate and speed up the process by trying to soften the film.

The following tools are allowed.

  1. Vaseline oil. Add to drink at the rate of 10 ml per 1 liter of water. No more than 2 times a day.
  2. Ammonia. For 5 liters of water 2-3 drops. Give throughout the day, but not more than 2 days.
  3. Duphalac. Give 5-7 ml orally in the morning and evening.

Mandatory medical attention when symptoms of obstruction appear. This is refusal to eat with plenty of drink, lack of stool, or profuse diarrhea and vomiting. In advanced and difficult cases, only surgical intervention will help: opening the stomach and removing all the polyethylene. If surgery is not possible, your veterinarian will advise you to take the cow to slaughter.

This is due to the fact that it is no longer possible to save the animal, it will die a slow, painful and painful death.


High-risk zones are pastures near highways, landfills, construction sites, from where garbage is spread throughout the area. Here shepherds should be especially vigilant. If possible, it is best not to drive the herd into potentially hazardous fields. The only real preventive measure here is the daily manual collection of polyethylene waste.

At home farmsteads, containers and buckets of garbage should be removed as much as possible. Give bales of hay without wrapping threads, feed - without packaging. Scheduled to give cows multivitamin complexes: eating waste and inedible products may be associated with a lack of trace elements in the body. It is important not to forget about regular visits to the veterinarian.

Plastic and cellophane bags are a real threat to cows, bulls and calves. The film does not dissolve in gastric juice, is not digested, and often becomes the cause of blockage or complete obstruction of the gastrointestinal tract. There is no cure or salvation for this problem. We can only hope for the best and carefully monitor the diet of animals.

Watch the video: What if we accidentally Eat Plastic? #aumsum #kids #science #education #children (January 2023).