Dairy producers can now reduce fluid loss for quicker recovery of calves suffering from dehydration—one of the leading causes of calf mortality—using a new advance in neonatal calf care specifically developed to support gut health.

Neonorm Calf is a novel gastrointestinal product that rapidly reduces dehydration and speeds up calf recovery from water loss, and promotes normal stool formation. The product has been field-tested in controlled studies in preweaned dairy calves.

“Neonatal calf diarrhea is a leading cause of death in dairy calves in the first month of life,” says Ian Parker, Vice President of Commercial Development for Jaguar Animal Health, makers of the new product. “Water loss and dehydration are caused by the secretion of chloride ions from cells lining the intestine. Neonorm Calf works by quickly reducing water loss from the circulatory system of the animal thus supporting and promoting the normal health of the gut.”

“When water loss is prevented and healthy gut function can continue, the result is normal stool formation in a short period of time, weight loss is mitigated, and supportive care costs and rehydration therapies are reduced.”

ANIMART, Inc., a Wisconsin-based supplier of animal health products and veterinary supplies for dairy and livestock producers, is the first retailer of the product.

Parker explains that Neonorm Calf is not an electrolyte, but an advanced product designed to inhibit fluid loss and support a calf’s healthy gut function.

“The product may be used along with electrolytes if the calf is dehydrated and supportive care is vital,” Parker says. “With the use of Neonorm Calf, the severity of dehydration is reduced for faster recovery and return to health of the calf.”

The product has been tested by leading researchers at Cornell University, the results of which will be submitted for publication and presentation in scientific peer reviewed journals and select veterinary congresses.

“Further testing of Neonorm Calf involving 1,300 calves is ongoing at Cornell and two other leading veterinary academic institutions: Tufts University and the University of California, Davis (Tulare field station),” says Parker.

Quickly reducing dehydration is important because of the number of ways it impacts the producer’s bottom line, including weaning weight and later milk production, says Parker.

“There is the immediate cost of electrolytes, antibiotics, veterinary care, labor and mortality,” notes Parker. “There also are a number of hidden, ongoing costs. Delayed weaning or reduced weight at weaning can lead to reduced milk production over the animal’s lifetime. The growth rate also affects timing of puberty and age at first freshening.”

Other benefits of using Neonorm Calf include:

  • Works locally in the gut.
  • Its bolus formulation makes for easy delivery by hand or balling gun, and is given twice daily for three days upon the first sign of loose stools.

This new advance in neonatal calf care is manufactured by Jaguar Animal Health, an animal health company focused on developing and commercializing first-in-class gastrointestinal products for production and companion animals. For more information, contact Jaguar customer service at (415) 371-8310.