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Young Animal Health

SCOURS– The Problem

Treating a calf-scours case can cost from $50 to $100, depending on intravenous fluids and other types of treatment. These calves don’t do as well once they have been sick. 50% of all calf death is result of dehydration and scours. What is the value of a heifer calf?

Some operations don’t lose very many calves, but are working day and night treating sick calves. Even though they are saving them, it is costing them a lot. What is your labor worth? Biologically, something has to go wrong for a calf to scour. Calves living primarily on milk or milk replacer should have a normal stool that is yellowish in color and relatively firm. Symptoms of diarrhea are changes in color and consistency from that standard.

The two main reasons calves scour are exposure to an excessive amount of pathogens and too few defenses from their dam’s colostrum against pathogens. To prevent scours one must focus on pathogen exposure (environmental) and immune system (dam vaccination, colostrum management). Dr. Patty Scharko, DVM, University of Kentucky, reports; “Problems occur when the number of infectious agents becomes so high that it overwhelms the colostral immunity which normally protects the calves”.

Infectious Causes Age Affected
E. Coli 1-5 Days
Clostridium Perfringens 2-10 Days
Salmonella 1-4 Weeks
Rota Virus 1-4 Weeks
Corona Virus 1-6 Weeks
BVD 2-6 Weeks
Cryptosporidia 1-6 Weeks

The Convert Line of products contains high levels of beneficial bacteria such as Enterococcus faecium, Lactobacillus acidophilus, Bifidobacterium thermophilum, and longum. It also contains contains microbial sugars which is an energy source for the “good bugs”. It contains two L-form Lactobacillus concentrates, and specialized proteins (egg-derived antibodies).

Using the Convert Line of products has proven to be effective in dealing with challenges in young animals.