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in Journal of the American Veterinary Medical Association

Abstract

Objective—To evaluate longevity, milk production, and breeding performance in adult Holstein cows fed either a plasma-derived commercial colostrum replacer (CR) or raw bovine maternal colostrum (MC) at birth.

Design—Randomized controlled clinical trial.

Animals—497 heifer calves born in 12 commercial dairies located in Minnesota and Wisconsin.

Procedures—All calves were separated from their dams within 30 to 60 minutes after birth and systematically assigned to be fed either MC (control group [n = 261 calves]) or CR (treatment group [236]). Calves were observed from birth up to adulthood (approx 54 months old), during which time death and culling events plus milk yield and breeding performance data were collected. Time to death, time to culling, time to death or culling combined, time to first calving, and time to conception intervals were evaluated by use of proportional hazards survival analysis models. Number of times inseminated per conception and lifetime milk yield (up to 54 months old) were evaluated by use of general linear models.

Results—Cows fed CR as calves at the time of birth were no different than cows fed MC as calves with respect to overall risk of death, culling, or death or culling combined (from birth to 54 months of follow-up and from first calving to 54 months old); lifetime milk yield; and breeding performance.

Conclusions and Clinical Relevance—No difference was detected in overall risk of death or culling, milk production, or reproductive performance between cows fed CR and those fed MC as calves at birth.

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in Journal of the American Veterinary Medical Association

Objective

To evaluate the effect of a single dose of recombinant bovine somatotropin (bST) on certain metabolic values, health, and milk production of dairy cows undergoing surgery for left displacement of the abomasum.

Design

Blinded clinical trial.

Animals

413 cows with left displacement of the abomasum.

Procedure

A single 500-mg dose of bST was administered to dairy cows following surgery in field practice conditions for left displacement of the abomasum. A placebo of the same carrier without bST was administered to control cows in this blinded study. Metabolic and production responses in a short-term follow-up period were measured.

Results

Blood glucose concentrations in cows 3 to 5 days after surgery were statistically higher for treated cows than for control cows. A higher proportion of treated cows had improved urine ketone test results than did controls. Significant differences in other metabolic values, health, and milk production were not detected.

Clinical Implications

Treatment of metabolically compromised cows with bST may have some positive effects, but further investigation is needed to confirm therapeutic value. (J Am Vet Med Assoc 1999;214:529–531)

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in Journal of the American Veterinary Medical Association

Abstract

Objective—To determine growth, morbidity, and mortality rates in dairy calves fed pasteurized nonsaleable milk versus commercial milk replacer and compare economics of feeding pasteurized nonsaleable milk versus commercial milk replacer in dairy calves.

Design—Clinical trial.

Animals—438 dairy calves.

Procedure—Calves were assigned at 1 to 2 days of age to be fed pasteurized nonsaleable milk or a commercial milk replacer until weaned. Body weight was measured at the time of study enrollment and at the time of weaning, and any medical treatments administered and deaths that occurred prior to weaning were recorded. A partial budget model was developed to examine the economics of feeding pasteurized nonsaleable milk versus commercial milk replacer.

Results—Calves fed conventional milk replacer had significantly lower rates of gain (–0.12 kg/d [–0.26 lb/d]), lower weaning weights (–5.6 kg [–12.3 lb]), higher risk for treatment during the summer and winter months (odds ratio [OR], 3.99), and higher risk of death during the winter months (OR, 29.81) than did calves fed pasteurized nonsaleable milk. The estimated savings of feeding pasteurized nonsaleable milk, compared with milk replacer, was $0.69/calf per day. The estimated number of calves needed to economically justify the nonsaleable milk pasteurization system was 23 calves/d.

Conclusions and Clinical Relevance—Results suggest that dairy calves fed pasteurized nonsaleable milk have a higher growth rate and lower morbidity and mortality rates than do calves fed conventional milk replacer. Feeding pasteurized nonsaleable milk could be an economically viable strategy for dairy calf producers. (J Am Vet Med Assoc 2005;226:1547–1554)

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in Journal of the American Veterinary Medical Association

Summary

A single preoperative dose of antibiotic proved as effective as a preoperative and 7-day postoperative course in reducing complications following rumenotomy in cattle. Exploratory rumenotomy was performed on 29 healthy Angus steers, which were allotted to the following treatment groups: (1) no antibiotic therapy, (2) single-dose, preoperative, antibiotic prophylaxis, using potassium penicillin G, and (3) preoperative potassium penicillin G prophylaxis, followed by a 7-day postoperative course of procaine penicillin G. Steers receiving antibiotics had significantly greater postoperative feed intake, lower rectal temperatures, and fewer abscesses at the surgical site than those receiving no antibiotics. There was no significant difference between animals receiving a single preoperative dose of antibiotic and those treated for an additional 7 days after surgery. In human medicine, it is generally agreed that a single preoperative dose of antibiotic offers effective prophylaxis. There are few published reports on antimicrobial prophylaxis in the veterinary literature, particularly in regard to large animals. Considering USDA requirements for milk withholding times and withdrawal times prior to slaughter for food animals receiving antibiotics, the findings of this study have medical as well as economic value.

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in Journal of the American Veterinary Medical Association