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Working Ranch - March 2018

BY RHONDA MCCURRY Pull yourself together, grab the nearest qualifi ed veterinarian and get back in the game This is a disturbing image but it can help prevent future problems. Because ranchers can attribute losing a calf during gestation to so many environmental factors, Lepto is a disease that may not be recognized immediately. The most common type of this bacterial disease resulting in cattle abortions is Pomona, a bacterium that is commonly shed by feral pigs. Animals infected with Pomona can drink or urinate into streams and quickly contaminate the water. As this same water fl ows, then collects in a drinking pond or stagnant stream, it can be ingested by cattle, which could ultimately lead to Lepto abortions. however, because without it the cows are at a greater risk for abortion. Merck Animal Health’s Cattle Technical Services Manager Jacques Fuselier, DVM, says if a rancher sees abortion in a high percentage of cows (such as 30-percent of the cow herd) then Lepto (leptospirosis) must be considered as a cause. A veterinarian should be brought in at this point to assess the operation, determine the risk areas and exposure to the disease, and test cows that have and have not aborted. If a rancher fi nds an aborted fetus the absolute best thing to do is to put the placenta and fetus on ice and bring it to a vet to test for cause. f a cow isn’t producing a live calf then she is a negative impact on her home herd. But it may not be her fault. Before she is culled for not settling and raising a calf each year a rancher must evaluate any problems, including diseases that may have led to a cow’s downfall. The reality is there are constant factors playing against the rancher and their cows to try and stop production. Diseases like leptospirosis, bovine herpes (IBR) and bovine viral diarrhea (BVD) are annual issues, no matter how much a rancher treats for it. Prevention against these diseases is necessary, 38 I WORKING RANCH I MARCH 2018


Working Ranch - March 2018
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