Calf scour can be a serious burden on both man and beast. By taking preventative steps, you can get ahead of the problem to reduce the risk of an outbreak. Nonetheless, despite our best-efforts an outbreak can occur. Listen to Helena and Martin discussing the many ways you can maximise the return of your preventative measures. In the event of an outbreak, the guys give some useful tips on how to reduce the risk of calf scour spreading in the group or shed.
Total Calf Health Solution Video Series
Colostrum is often referred to as ‘liquid gold’ and according to Martin, if you spend your money on vaccination each litre of colostrum is worth €10. In this video, the pair highlight the importance of the correct management of colostrum, including ways to measure colostrum quality, how to store it correctly and best hygiene practices to ensure the feeding equipment is adequately cleaned.
There is a lot of useful information available regarding ventilation, but some may not be practical unless you are building a new shed. In this video, Martin and Cara discuss some options you could consider, and adaptions you could make, if you are experiencing challenges when it comes to improving the ventilation in your calf house.
Over the past few years, much of our focus has been on cow accommodation, sometimes forgetting about the calves. Converting old sheds into calf rearing facilities is a great quick fix but may not always fit the needs of the calf. Pen space is important to consider from the perspective of management, feeding and to allow space for the animal to grow. In this video, the pair discuss some key points when it comes to managing the bedding, red flags to watch out for and some simple calculations to ensure you have the optimal amount of space for each calf.
Like the previous video, some calf sheds are typically an old shed that has been converted. A lot of consideration may not have been given to drainage and wall type at the time these were built; therefore, it is likely that they might not be suitable for a calf shed. It’s important to understand how air flows in and over walls, is it removing stale air or is it cause a draft. Similarly, we need to understand the drainage in our sheds. This will help to avoid the calf’s bedding getting damp.
We have learned so much over the last number of months on viruses. Pneumonia is multi-factorial disease which simply means that many factors can affect its onset within calves. Examples are things like nutrition, housing space, airflow, temperature, etc. Vaccination can play its part in reducing the risks of an outbreak but will also minimise the spread if an outbreak does occur. In this video, Cara goes into detail on the products that we have to offer to help tackle pneumonia on your farm. In a study with 215 female calves, the presence of lung damage caused by BRD (bovine respiratory disease) in the first 8 weeks of life resulted in a decrease of 525L of milk produced in the first lactation. In total 57% of calves were affected1
- Dunn, T.R., et all. (2018), The effect of lung consolidation, as determined by ultrasonography on first-lactation milk production in Holstein dairy calves, J. Dairy Sci., 101: 1-7, 2018.
There is some confusion surrounding the different types of calf scour, particularly coccidiosis. In this video, Martin and Sarah talk through coccidiosis in calves, how to control it and, how to prevent the disease. Coccidiosis can also commonly occur when calves are at grass, so Martin shares some practical tips to reduce the risk of this also.