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How to Improve Cow-Calf Operation Efficiency?

0 Author 2023-03-14 16:56:35

Every animal has bacteria in its digestive system without which they cannot digest forage, grains or vitamins. So farmers actually need to think about how best to feed the microbes in the animal's digestive tract.


Bacillus Laterosporus


An appropriate proportion of high-quality grains, forages and vitamins will increase beneficial bacteria and allow animals to grow more efficiently. Probiotic supplements are used with high-quality feed by providing additional beneficial microbes when cows or calves are challenged by farm events.

On the other hand, antibiotics can kill not only the harmful bacteria they target, but also a large number of beneficial bacteria in the intestines. After feeding antibiotics to cattle or calves, probiotics-literally "for life"-can help probiotics grow faster.

Animals are born without any bacteria in their intestines, for better or worse. The intestines of calves are quickly colonized in the natural way of dairy cows and the environment. Many studies have shown that if animals are given probiotics at birth, good bacteria will replace bad bacteria, which usually inhibit that position in the intestines. Therefore, the best time to start feeding probiotics is after birth.

In cow-calf operation, it is difficult to inject probiotics into the cow, so the farmer will feed the calf a paste and put some products on its back so that the cow will lick it off. In this way, both cows and calves will benefit from probiotics, including faster recovery from the challenge of calving. Good bugs in the digestive system may double every half an hour, so probiotics can help maintain appetite and digestive system health, thus achieving the best feed efficiency.

Early in my career as a livestock dietitian, I realized that increasing intake was the best way to fight disease and the only way for animals to benefit more effectively. When cows and calves in challenging environments do not eat, their rumen pH values are out of balance. This may lead to an increase in clinical diseases and metabolic disorders. Probiotics help to balance the pH value of the rumen, thereby increasing appetite and weight gain.

Once on the farm, the calves are also exposed to pathogenic microbes. If they are fed probiotics when they arrive, they are better able to resist the diseases that are most certain to exist on the farm. If the farms can add probiotic pills to their agreement, the calves will continue to be fed more quickly and get a better weight gain rate. Some of the farms I've worked with commented on how much faster calves eat when they get probiotic supplements at birth. They also said that after adding probiotics to the feed, the animals in the hospital fence performed better and the loss of death was significantly reduced.

In short, a good farmer or farm owner using probiotics can not only reduce morbidity and mortality, but also increase their return on investment. A good farmer always has a tube of probiotic paste as an insurance policy against adverse circumstances. 

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