Abhay Charanaravinda Passed Away


February 7, 2024
Two days ago, Balabhadra (ISCOWP president) was doing the daily evening herd check and noticed Abhay hadn’t moved from sitting since the morning. This is not unusual but sends us a signal to look for him in the morning. The following morning, Balabhadra found him sitting in the same spot. We went to him and brought him water, grain, and hay. He could not get up, and we called the vet.

He was his usual calm self and not alarmed that he couldn’t get up from sitting. It seemed that his back legs could not support him. Abhay seemed fine before this as we did not see him limping or walking slowly, which are signs that a cow is experiencing some difficulty in the limbs.

ISCOWP members rescued Abhay and seven other calves from the auction barn in 2014. He is now ten years old, which is not really old (about 50 years old in human years). However, our vet at the time said the cows from the auction barn are often unhealthy, as they have been through a lot of stress and poor conditions. And in the USA, most male cows do not live this long.

Abhay sat beneath the shelter of the old Live Oak trees.

The vet came and concluded he may have a magnesium deficiency, as there were no signs of injury, infection, or severe arthritis. She gave him a strong dose of magnesium, several painkillers, and antibiotics to prevent infection. She thought he’d get up in the morning.

He has not got up this morning. The vet is having the blood samples she took tested for other medical indications. Abhay is currently eating and drinking. As 7-year-old Bhima says, “Abhay’s all right; he just can’t get up.” However, it is never a good sign when a cow can’t get up.

We are waiting to hear from the vet and will let you know about further developments as soon as we know.

February 8, 2024
Abhay has made progress in getting up. He got up on his knees today, showing strength in his back legs. The vet gave him more magnesium and painkillers since the blood tests confirmed a magnesium deficiency. The expectation and hope is that he will fully get up sometime tomorrow by Lord Krishna’s grace. We will keep you informed of further developments as they unfold. We would be thankful if you could say a prayer for Abhay. Thank you for all your help caring for Abhay.

February 9, 2024
Unfortunately, Abhay did not get up. The vet is reanalyzing everything to determine what else we can do and if there could be another reason for his condition. We have not heard back from her yet. We appreciate your continued prayers.

February 10, 2024
The vet consulted with another vet, and they put slings around Abhay and supported him from the tractor. The idea was to see if he could support himself when his feet touched the ground. His legs from beneath his knees did not move to support him. They think he has some underlying problem; all the symptoms point to spinal cancer. If it were just a magnesium deficiency, he would have gotten up by now due to the doses of magnesium given to him in the last two days.

Abhay arrives directly from the auction barn and is about to jump off the trailer. That’s Padmaganda and Balaji to the left. Click the pic or this link to view the video.

It is not uncommon to stand a cow up with slings who hasn’t gotten up. We have done this before but with a different outcome. It can be what a cow needs to walk again.

At this point, there is not much more we can do. He is eating and drinking and is sitting under a tree listening to the chanting of Hare Krishna and spiritual bhajans. I’ll keep you updated.

February 12, 2024
Abhay has passed away. He was under one of the old Live Oak trees. We gave him water from the sacred Radha Kund lake in India, a Harinama shawl (printed with Sanskrit names of God) on his back, and a Pavitra Garland worn by the famous Ugra Narasimha Deity in Mayapur, India, wrapped around his horn. These garlands are offered only once per year and are worn all day by the deity. The energy of the deity is imparted to the garlands, which are considered the ultimate protective relic that can be obtained.

Your prayers are appreciated for his peaceful journey. This is the hardest part of cow protection. Everyone here is emotional but glad he could pass peacefully and auspiciously. It was a bit of a shock for everyone as we had no warnings until he couldn’t walk. Let us all pray for him.

The Health Phenomena of Rescued Cows

When we rescue male or female cows, they usually come from situations where they have been bred for meat or milk. Their life expectancy in these industries is usually no more than¬† 2 or 3 years for the males and less than six months for those males sent to the veal industry. For cows, the life expectancy is around 4 to 5 years. The dairy sends the cow to slaughter when she can’t keep up the expected level of milk production. So, once a rescued cow or ox lives beyond these years, we are dealing with an unchartered and unknown medical arena.

In addition, the situation a cow is rescued from can have a lasting effect on the cow’s health. For instance, ISCOWP rescued Abhay and seven other calves from an auction barn where the conditions were not clean, and the atmosphere was Neanderthal. When we brought the calves home, our vet said it was good we got so many because usually, some calves will die as the conditions in the auction barn are so stressful. We lost one calf that year and another, who we knew had a health problem, after a few years. And now Abhay 10 years later. It is a merciful act by all involved when we rescue a cow and a great sadness when the cow passes on.

Everyone deserves to feel loved and safe. That’s Balaji with Surabhi (sitting) and Vaishnavi (standing). Bhima and Achutyananda with Jahnavi in the background.

Medical testing or requirements to sell one’s animals vary significantly due to the state and location within the state, which auction barn, whether it is a private sale or public, etc. A risk is always there concerning the cow’s health and if there are any underlying health problems. However, what is the alternative? The bottom line is the meat and dairy industries slaughter their male and female cows in their prime or before.

One thing we can all do is to stop supporting or at least lessen our support of the meat and dairy industries, which are responsible for the cruel life the cow lives in this modern age. We can stop or at least limit the purchase of meat and milk. Less demand means less business and less torture for the cow. If you love the taste of milk, there are now so many alternatives to cow’s milk products available in many popular markets.



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