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Indiana farmer saves half-dead calf with warmth of hot tub

By Fred Lambert

ROSSVILLE , Ind., March 7 (UPI) -- An Indiana farmer used the warmth of a hot tub to revive a half-dead calf he discovered in a pile of snow.

Dean Gangwer said he found the calf as he did his morning cattle count at Gangwer Farms, in Carrol County, where in addition to raising cows the third-generation farmer grows corn and soybeans.

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"Mornings start early around here," he told KNVX. "We go out and we scout our cattle...she decided to wander off by herself, which a lot of cows do. They want to be alone."

Gangwer said he must have missed one of his bovines giving birth. The baby cow suffered from a low body temperature and had difficulty breathing and keeping his eyes open.

Gangwer rushed the calf, which he named Leroy, back to his house. As Gangwer passed near his hot tub he got the idea to jump in with Leroy to raise his body heat.

"I jumped in fully dressed, held Leroy up so he didn't drown, and him and I had a nice bath for an hour, so we both came out warm and I think the end story's gonna be great for him," Gangwer said.

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Gangwer said he got the idea from cattle magazines and shows, saying, "They always talk about warm baths and calves."

He dried Leroy off inside and wrapped him in electric blankets for another day and a half to further warm the animal. Leroy is now on his feet and nursed for the first time Friday.

"Leroy's officially done hot-tubbing," Gangwer said. "Some sunbathing is definitely in his future out in the grass, but definitely his hot tub days are done."

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