Maximizing Profits Starts with Bovine Respiratory Disease Management

Maximizing Profits Starts with Bovine Respiratory Disease Management

Russell Nemetz
Russell Nemetz
Hi everybody it's time for your Land and Livestock Report here on the Ag Information Network of the West-I'm Russell Nemetz.

Today our newsmaker guest is Dr. Craig Jones with Boehringer Ingelheim. And Dr. Jones, this time of the year what should ranchers be on the lookout for in terms of animal disease prevention?

"Bovine respiratory disease (BRD) is an economic challenge to all cattle producers. This disease complex accounts for approximately 75 percent of feedlot illnesses and 50 percent of feedlot deaths. These numbers represent lost productivity as well as increased labor and medical costs to treat the cattle. While the medical costs associated with these numbers are significant, the economic impact of BRD on the performance of cattle can be devastating."

Stress can play a big part.

"In the cattle industry, there are a number of built-in stressors such as transition stress, feed changes and environmental exposures. These stressors merge with disease organisms and develop into a complex that challenges an animal's health. The first 30 days after weaning or receiving cattle seems to be the most critical time for disease detection. During this time period, it is important to reduce stress factors and keep a close watch on cattle."

How does BRD affect carcass quality?

"An Oklahoma State University study shows reduced carcass merit for animals with lung lesions at harvest and a reduced carcass value due to fewer pounds and lower carcass quality. Cattle with active respiratory tract lesions had lower dressing percentage and marbling scores than those with inactive lesions1. Equally as important, marbling score, fat thickness and hot carcass weight was reduced in cattle with any lesion as compared to cattle with no lesions. Decreased performance due to BRD can be an economic blow to producers and cattle feeders."

That's your Land and Livestock Report-I'm Russell Nemetz.

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