As we move through May, red deer across the country will be beginning to calve, with fallow deer following after. Whilst often this process requires very little veterinary intervention, dystocia is sometimes seen and must be managed appropriately. Usually, manual intervention is only possible with appropriate handling facilities in the farm scenario and tends to be a salvage procedure for the hind, however can be rewarding and lead to positive outcomes.
Critical care and orphaned neonates from wild animals, farms and parks are also sometimes presented to vets. These can be challenging cases, requiring varying degrees of veterinary involvement and intervention. Deer calves have quite specific requirements and careful consideration of their nutritional requirement and health status is necessary. A useful link to an article on hand rearing red deer calves can be found in the “Publications”, from the British Deer Farms and Parks Association (BDFPA). For advice or assistance with any cases, members are encouraged to use the “contact us” section of the website.