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Calves & Heifers

The future of your herd depends on quality colostrum, milk or replacer feeding and disease control along with proper bedding, sanitation and ventilation.

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On average, dairies lose 5 to 15 percent of their calves in the first three weeks of life due to scours, making it the number one killer of calves. However, it doesn’t have to be this way. With the right tools and protocols, it is possible to maintain less than a 1.5 percent death loss in these young calves.

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Are your calves healthy? How do you know? You probably have a general picture of calf health on your farm, but putting pen to paper and tracking the numbers can give you accurate data to watch trends and make changes quickly.

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In the current economic climate, dairy farmers are looking to increase efficiency across their business and reduce costs. Although it is viewed as a small portion of the dairy enterprise, nearly 20 percent of the production costs incurred on a dairy are attributed to raising replacement heifers.

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Calves are future producers in a dairy farm, and many studies demonstrate the animal’s health and growth in early life influence its future productivity. The impacts of both pre- and post-natal heat stress on pre-weaning calves need to be recognized because they significantly influence calves’ growth, health and future performance.

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Understanding the basic principles of calf barn ventilation is essential in evaluating the many different ventilation options available today. There is no single ventilation system that will work for every situation because each calf barn is unique in its structure and layout.

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The best way to save on calf starter without sacrificing growth and performance is to limit waste. These seven steps can help you save money on calf starter.

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