We just got word from the breeder who has Stella. Seems Stella ate something bad and may end up being put down. At best, the breeder doesn't feel comfortable selling her to us even if she recovers.
Cows, and other grazing critters, often ingest bits of metal or plastic or other junky stuff that always winds up in a pasture. Sometimes it can be passed ok, sometimes not. It's just one of those possible livestock problems that can happen to anyone.
The breeder did offer us another heifer, a full sister to Stella's mom, who is one month older. We're thinking, though, that this is the one she mentioned wanting to keep, since the calf is the last heifer from a really outstanding bull. We let her know we're interested in that one, as long as it doesn't interfere with her herd plans. We sure would hate to have to start our search all over again, or wait til next spring's babies, but we'd also hate to take advantage of the breeder's sense of obligation in this sale...
We'll keep you posted.