Colder weather has descended on many parts of the U.S. dairy country, and that means we need to pay increased attention to the impact of cold stress on young dairy calves raised outside. Calves less than 3 weeks of age are most susceptible to cold stress because they are born with very little body fat reserves to draw upon and do not consume very much calf starter at this young age. These young calves must rely on the energy being provided by the liquid diet they are consuming to meet their energy requirements for maintenance (basic body functions such as digestion, immune function, and nutrient metabolism) and for growth.Read More
Topics: Calf Management
The appropriate bedding for a calf varies from a thin layer of straw, sand or wood chips in the summer to a deep layer of an insulating straw where a calf can nestle into the bedding to stay warm as the temperature drops.Read More
Medications such as Banamine® (for pain) must be injected directly into a vein. In this movie, Elizabeth demonstrates how to administer an intravenous injection to a young calf.Read More
An esophageal tube feeder is an essential tool for feeding colostrum to newborn calves and for administering fluids to sick or dehydrated calves. For some calf raisers, the idea of tubing a calf may cause some anxiety over possibly hurting the calf or causing fluids to enter the lungs.Read More
The 2017 National FARM Program (Farmers Assuring Responsible Management) takes aim at pain management. Painful medical procedures and the need to manage the associated pain and stress to animals get detailed attention in this revision. Dehorning/disbudding, castration, branding, and extra teat removal are all procedures performed on calves and require pain management.
When it comes to managing calves in cold weather there are a number of things you can do as the temperature drops. Managing the calf's environment through calf jackets, adequate bedding, minimizing drafts and exposure can have a big impact on the effectiveness of cold weather nutrition strategies. Increasing nutrient intake is a key component of successful cold weather management.Read More
As of January 1, 2017, any medically important antibiotic are subject to the feed directive rule and will require either a Veterinary Feed Directive (VFD) form for feed-delivered antibiotics or a veterinary prescription for water delivered antibiotics. There are a dozen medically important antibiotics that will be transitioning from "over the counter" to VFD status.Read More