Hot Tub Saves Life of Newborn Calf

Hot tubs are known to enhance their owners’ lives by helping them relax and heal. In some particularly bizarre bits of news, hot tubs have even shown their merit as literal life savers, like in the story of an elderly blind Boston terrier who fell 15 storeys and was only saved by landing in the condo’s uncovered hot tub below. If you liked that story, you’re going to love this one.

This tale takes place in the small township of Rossville, Indiana, home to approximately 1,653 people at the 2010 census. Indiana has had a particularly snowy winter and that has presented some unique problems to third-generation farmer, Dean Gangwer. Dean manages Gangwer Farms in Carroll County where he grows corn, soy beans, and manages about 100 head of cattle. While making his way around his farm checking on everything, Gangwer noticed an abandoned newborn calf in a large snowbank—a birth the farmer had apparently missed.

Gangwer said that wasn’t altogether uncommon for cows.

“She decided to go off by herself, which a lot of cows do, they want to be alone, big old pile of snow, I found this calf laying in there.”

It didn’t look good; the newborn animal had dangerously low body temperatures, showed little signs of life, and was struggling to stay conscious. So what did the savvy Indiana farmer do?

Naturally, he decided to go hot-tubbing.

That’s right. Gangwer remembered learning about the benefit of warm baths for newborn calves and took action. Gangwer grabbed the calf he named Leroy (the farmer names all of his livestock), put him on the back of his ATV, and then immediately got into the hot tub with the newborn animal in the hopes of bringing its body temperature back up to normal as quickly as possible. There was no time or consideration wasted on putting on a swimming suit.

“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.”

After time in the water, Gangwer dried off the calf and wrapped him in electric blankets to help him retain warmth. After a day and a half, the newborn’s body temperature had climbed back to a normal range and he even had the strength to stand and nurse on his own. Leroy seems to be recovering nicely and should be ready to join his herd in no time.

So will hot tub use be in this calf’s future?

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

And the hot tub? “It still needs a little cleaning, I think,” Gangwer said.

Make sure you watch the video evidence of Leroy's recovery.

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