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Herd Health

Find information about vaccination protocols, disease control, biosecurity, and working with your veterinarian on antibiotic treatment.

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The cow’s first milk is crucial to the health and survival of her calf. It contains fat that provides energy (and generates body warmth in cold weather), acts as a laxative to help pass first bowel movements and provides important antibodies against disease.

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How do other cattle producers ensure a successful calving season? We’ve gathered their advice.

Every cowboy knows that the cardinal rule of calving is that calves need colostrum as soon as possible within their first few hours of life. That’s when they have the ability to absorb the colostrum’s immunity-boosting antibodies directly through the gut wall and into the bloodstream – the opportunity for that direct absorption ends after the calf is about 24 hours old.

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Year-in and year-out, fescue foot occurs in late November and early December somewhere in southwest Missouri. That was the case again in 2010 according to Eldon Cole, a livestock specialist with University of Missouri.

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Each calving season brings a special set of challenges for cow-calf producers. However, the primary goal remains the same every year – get as many calves as possible on the ground and off to a healthy start. One obstacle that virtually all producers will face at some point during calving season is scours.

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For over a century, the word “temperament” has been used to define the fear-related behavioral responses of cattle when exposed to human handling. As cattle temperament worsens, their response to human contact or any other handling procedures becomes more pronounced. Within the beef cattle industry, producers select cattle for temperament, primarily for safety reasons. However, recent studies demonstrate cattle temperament may also have productive and economic implications to beef operations.

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U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) scientists have identified the primary site where the virus that causes foot-and-mouth disease (FMD) begins infection in cattle. This discovery could lead to development of new vaccines to control and potentially eradicate FMD, a highly contagious and sometimes fatal viral disease of cloven-hoofed animals that is considered the most economically devastating livestock disease in the world.

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