Regardless of the financial advantages of feeding waste milk to calves, an important question is whether this practice can affect the calves’ health and result in unnecessary selection of antibiotic resistant bacteria.
Michigan State University researchers Lorraine Sordillo and Ángel Abuelo, both in the MSU College of Veterinary Medicine, have been awarded a four-year, $500,000 grant for their work with dairy calves.
Summer climate changes mean preweaned calves need more water in their diets to prevent dehydration. But calf and heifer specialist Sam Leadley says calves also need water year-around for optimal digestive development.
The health and productivity of young calves can be affected by a wide range of metabolic and pathogenic conditions. Among the maladies that can profoundly affect calves’ health is their intake and balance of sodium.
Protecting the lungs of young calves is critical to their long-term performance as adult animals. SDSU veterinarian Russ Daly discusses methods to prevent and manage pneumonia in calves as the mercury drops.
When raising replacement heifers, cost per pound of gain is a far more important metric than daily feed cost, according to Tamilee Nennich, dairy nutritionist and board member for the Dairy Calf and Heifer Association.