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  • Author or Editor: Andrea L. Foley x
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Objective—To compare serum total protein (sTP) and serum IgG (sIgG) concentrations In neonatal calves administered colostrum or a bovine serum-based colostrum replacement (CR) product followed by a bovine serum-based colostrum supplement (CS) product.

Design—Randomized controlled clinical trial.

Animals—18 Jersey and 269 Holstein neonatal heifer calves.

Procedures—141 calves were given 4 L of colostrum in 1 or 2 feedings (first or only feeding was provided ≤ 2 hours after birth; when applicable, a second feeding was provided between 2 and 12 hours after birth). Other calves (n = 146) were fed 2 L of a CR product ≤ 2 hours after birth and then 2 L of a CS product between 2 and 12 hours after birth. Concentrations of sTP and sIgG were measured 1 to 7 days after birth. Data from cohorts on individual farms and for all farms were analyzed.

Results—Mean sTP and sIgG concentrations differed significantly between feeding groups. In calves fed colostrum and calves fed CR and CS products, mean ± SD sTP concentration was 5.58 ± 0.67 g/dL and 5.26 ± 0.54 g/dL, respectively, and mean sIgG concentration was 1,868 ± 854 mg/dL and 1,320 ± 620 mg/dL, respectively. The percentage of calves that had failure of passive transfer of immunity (ie, sIgG concentrations < 1,000 mg/dL) was not significantly different between groups.

Conclusions and Clinical Relevance—Results suggested that sequential feeding of bovine serum-based CR and CS products to neonatal calves is an alternative to feeding colostrum for achieving passive transfer of immunity.

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in Journal of the American Veterinary Medical Association