This is Cardio Brisket, a six-week-old calf that was born with an extremely rare deformity — HIS HEART IS IN HIS NECK.
Todd Moores of Wheeling Veterinary Associates told the Associated Press that he's never seen anything like it.
He believes Cardio Brisket was born with a defect that kept the calf's breast bone from properly developing, leaving an opening that enables the heart to "flop" out into the neck. He could also be missing a few rib bones.
"I could tell by looking at it. You can see the heart beating right there," Moores said. "It even makes a noise because there's fluid around it, so it makes a sloshing noise."
Cardio Brisket's deformity was only recently discovered by Tom Leech, who purchased the calf and has been caring for him on his western Pennsylvania farm.
He made the discovery after bringing Cardio Brisket in from the cold to warm him up one day. Leech told the AP that he now keeps the calf apart from the rest of the cattle to guard against any accidental injury.
The little calf with the rare deformity has since endeared itself to the farmer.
He declined an offer from researchers at the Ohio State College of Veterinary Medicine to take the calf in for testing when they couldn't guarantee he'd survive.
"Tom is so attached," Leech's wife, Debbie, told the Observer-Reporter. "He'll just come out here and sit and keep him company."
It's not clear how long Cardio Brisket will live, given a heart murmur that could lead to other complications. But the calf is able to swallow grain normally, and Leech has rebuffed suggestions that he euthanize it.
"If he was suffering, we would probably do something, but he's not," Leech told the AP.