OBJECTIVE To describe the frequency of calfhood producer-identified bovine respiratory disease complex (BRDC) in Holstein replacement heifers on 1 large farm and determine associations between development of BRDC at ≤ 120 days of age (BRDC120) with milk production estimate, calving interval, and risk of departure from the herd (DFH).
DESIGN Retrospective, observational study.
ANIMALS 14,024 Holstein heifer calves born on 1 farm.
PROCEDURES Data were obtained from herd management records. Cox proportional hazard and generalized linear mixed-effects models were used to assess associations for variables of interest (BRDC120 status, demographic data, and management factors) with DFH, milk production estimate, and calving interval.
RESULTS Except for the year 2007, animals identified as having BRDC120 were 1.62 to 4.98 times as likely to leave the herd before first calving, compared with those that did not have this designation. Calves identified as having BRDC prior to weaning were 2.62 times as likely to have DFH before first calving as those classified as developing BRDC after weaning. Cows identified as having BRDC120 were 1.28 times as likely to have DFH between the first and second calving as were other cows. The BRDC120 designation was associated with a 233-kg (513-lb) lower 305-day mature equivalent value for first lactation milk production, but was not associated with longer or shorter calving intervals at maturity.
CONCLUSIONS AND CLINICAL RELEVANCE Dairy cattle identified as having BRDC120 had increased risk of DFH before the first or second calving and lower first-lactation milk production estimates, compared with results for cattle without this finding. Further investigation of these associations is warranted.
OBJECTIVE To investigate the effects of dietary supplementation with the β-adrenoceptor agonists ractopamine hydrochloride and zilpaterol hydrochloride on ECG and clinicopathologic variables of finishing beef steers.
DESIGN Randomized controlled trial.
ANIMALS 30 Angus steers.
PROCEDURES Steers were grouped by body weight and randomly assigned to receive 1 of 3 diets for 23 days: a diet containing no additive (control diet) or a diet containing ractopamine hydrochloride (300 mg/steer/d) or zilpaterol hydrochloride (8.3 mg/kg [3.8 mg/lb] of feed on a dry-matter basis), beginning on day 0. Steers were instrumented with an ambulatory ECG monitor on days −2, 6, 13, and 23, and continuous recordings were obtained for 72, 24, 24, and 96 hours, respectively. At the time of instrumentation, blood samples were obtained for CBC and serum biochemical and blood lactate analysis. Electrocardiographic recordings were evaluated for mean heart rate and arrhythmia rates.
RESULTS Steers fed zilpaterol or ractopamine had greater mean heart rates than those fed the control diet. Mean heart rates were within reference limits for all steers, with the exception of those in the ractopamine group on day 14, in which mean heart rate was high. No differences in arrhythmia rates were identified among the groups, nor were any differences identified when arrhythmias were classified as single, paired, or multiple (> 2) beats.
CONCLUSIONS AND CLINICAL RELEVANCE Results suggested that dietary supplementation of cattle with ractopamine or zilpaterol at FDA-approved doses had no effect on arrhythmia rates but caused an increase in heart rate that remained within reference limits.