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Health performance of feeder calves sold at conventional auctions versus special auctions of vaccinated or conditioned calves in Ontario

Joanne E. MacartneyDepartment of Population Medicine, Ontario Veterinary College, University of Guelph, Guelph, ON Canada N1G 2W1.
Present address is 17 Roscoe Ave, Trenton, ON Canada K8V 2G4.

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 MSc
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Kenneth G. BatemanDepartment of Population Medicine, Ontario Veterinary College, University of Guelph, Guelph, ON Canada N1G 2W1.

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 DVM, MSc
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Carl S. RibbleDepartment of Population Medicine, Ontario Veterinary College, University of Guelph, Guelph, ON Canada N1G 2W1.

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 DVM, PhD

Abstract

Objective—To compare health performance during the first 28 days in the feedlot for vaccinated or conditioned feeder calves sold through special auctions in Ontario with health performance for calves sold through conventional auctions in the province.

Design—Cohort study.

Animals—12,313 calves sold through conventional and special auctions at the Keady Livestock Market during the fall of 1999 and 2000.

Procedure—Buyers of calf groups were approached at the auction market or contacted by telephone and asked to record the number of calves requiring treatment for bovine respiratory tract disease (BRD) during the first 28 days after purchase.

Results—211 calf groups (≥ 20 calves/group) were followed up for 28 days after purchase. Multivariate logistic analysis indicated that vaccinated calves purchased through special auctions were 0.68 (95% confidence interval, 0.50 to 0.93) times as likely to receive treatment for BRD as were calves purchased at conventional auctions and that conditioned calves were 0.22 (95% confidence interval, 0.12 to 0.38) times as likely to receive treatment. Groups that received antimicrobials by injection on arrival at the feedlot were 0.64 (95% confidence interval, 0.43 to 0.96) times as likely to be treated as were groups that did not.

Conclusions and Clinical Relevance—Results suggest that vaccinated and conditioned calves were less likely to receive treatment for BRD during the first 28 days in the feedlot; however, there was no difference in mortality rate. (J Am Vet Med Assoc 2003;223: 677–683)

Abstract

Objective—To compare health performance during the first 28 days in the feedlot for vaccinated or conditioned feeder calves sold through special auctions in Ontario with health performance for calves sold through conventional auctions in the province.

Design—Cohort study.

Animals—12,313 calves sold through conventional and special auctions at the Keady Livestock Market during the fall of 1999 and 2000.

Procedure—Buyers of calf groups were approached at the auction market or contacted by telephone and asked to record the number of calves requiring treatment for bovine respiratory tract disease (BRD) during the first 28 days after purchase.

Results—211 calf groups (≥ 20 calves/group) were followed up for 28 days after purchase. Multivariate logistic analysis indicated that vaccinated calves purchased through special auctions were 0.68 (95% confidence interval, 0.50 to 0.93) times as likely to receive treatment for BRD as were calves purchased at conventional auctions and that conditioned calves were 0.22 (95% confidence interval, 0.12 to 0.38) times as likely to receive treatment. Groups that received antimicrobials by injection on arrival at the feedlot were 0.64 (95% confidence interval, 0.43 to 0.96) times as likely to be treated as were groups that did not.

Conclusions and Clinical Relevance—Results suggest that vaccinated and conditioned calves were less likely to receive treatment for BRD during the first 28 days in the feedlot; however, there was no difference in mortality rate. (J Am Vet Med Assoc 2003;223: 677–683)