Pre-mating drenching and minerals

The fact is adult cattle are still subject to damage from the worm larval stages before their immune systems have a chance to recognise and kick out the adult worms.

These larval stages create damage to the mucosa of the gut lining that can cause the problems; it incites an increase in gastrin secretion (this is an appetite depressant), and along with the natural immune system’s demand for glucose when responding to these larvae, we see a net loss in energy available to the cow. This net loss is through decreased drive to eat from increased gastrin and therefore reduced intake potential, and the loss of available blood glucose to the immune system, i.e., to non “productive” functions in terms of animal profitability but a vital function no less. Damage to the gut lining will also act to potentially decrease the digestive efficiency of the gut and production.

So which drench to use and when? Many studies above used the active Eprinomectin (Eprinex® or EpriSure™). These pour-on products have a NIL milk and meat with-hold so are safe to use in early lactation and are non-bio-accumulative. Many dairy farmers apply a whole herd pour-on at dry-off, combining lice and internal parasite control using Cattle Pour or Genesis or Reflex, then a month before mating starts treating with Eprinex® or EpriSure™.

Trace element supplementing at incorrect levels (either too much or too little) costs money without achieving the desired results. If you are not giving sufficient to correct a deficit, then you will not see the benefits you expect. If you are giving too much, you run the risk of toxicity in the herd. Trying to save money by not testing is false economy in the long run! To ensure you get the levels right, we recommend testing a sample of your herd prior to supplementation to assess their trace element status. This is particularly important for herds experiencing a change in diet such as removal or addition of PKE, Maize, or meals.

There are times when the requirements for trace elements rapidly increase, often coinciding with reduced feed intake. When this occurs even well-supplemented herds can temporarily dip into a slight deficiency. These periods of high demand often led to higher levels of disease, and sometimes short-term drops in production, growth, or fertility. Calving, mating, weaning, transport, or early life are all good examples of high-stress periods where demand increases.

Multimin® Injectable trace elements provide rapid, targeted, and sustained increases in animal trace element levels, so are more suitable for use prior to a high demand period.

Check with your veterinarian if anthelmintic drenching and Multimin® will fit in with your pre-mating programme.