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Veterinarian: Deworm cattle in spring

Source: Wikimedia Commons

United States producers returned to beef cattle operations, after attending the Cattle Industry Convention & NCBA Trade Show last week in San Antonio, Texas.

Russ Parker, operations manager for the Iowa Agribusiness Radio Network, attend this year’s event, which attracted more than 9,000 cattle producers, industry partners and stakeholders. Parker interviewed several industry allies, including a senior professional services veterinarian, who spoke to herd health.

As spring nears, cattle producers look to working their herds. A senior professional services veterinarian encourages producers to deworm their cattle during this time.

Dr. Rich Linhart, of Boehringer Ingelheim, says while it may not be the most convenient time, it will be the most economically benificial. 

“The best, most beneficial time to deworm an adult cow is in the springtime, when grass starts to green up. That’s when parasites are most active,” Dr. Linhart said. “There are studies that show – Cows that are dewormed in the spring have calves that weigh more in the fall. That’s because parasites can suppress their appetite, reducing their dry matter intake, which negatively impacts their milk production.”

Deworming calves is equally as important. Dr. Linhart points to data, which suggests producers suffer greatly, if they do not deworm young cattle.

“We know the greatest production losses, in terms of lack of weight or not meeting the full genetic and nutritional potential, occur when we fail to deworm calves,” Dr. Linhart said. “In young calves, it’s economical to deworm them.”

Dr. Linhart recommends deworming young calves during branding our pre-weaning.

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