Issue of the Week (Dec. 24-28): Keeping Calves Warm

What’s the Issue?

  • Cold calves require more energy to stay warm and they are more susceptible to calf diseases like pneumonia and scours.

What’s the Impact?

  • Calves with pneumonia, scours and other diseases do not seem to thrive and grow as well as healthy calves.
  • Milk production and profit can be affected later in the cow’s life.

ANIMART Solution(s):

  • Use calf jackets for (at least) the first two weeks of life.
  • Keep a deeply bedded hutch or stall so they can make a nest. It’s deep enough if only half the calf is visible.
  • Feed enough calories in the diet. Consider adding products like Super Calf to the milk for added caloric density.
    • If feeding a 20-20 milk replacer the minimum should be 1.5 gallons per day and it has been recommended to feed 2 gallons per day until they’re eating a half pound of grain.
    • Feeding three times daily reduces the risk of Clostridia compared to feeding twice daily at this accelerated level.
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