Calf Feeding

The Calf’s Digestive System

Abomasum For the first two weeks of a calf’s life it is a monogastric – or simple–stomached – animal, using only using the abomasum to digest the milk or milk replacer. The abomasum releases digestive enzymes to break down fats, […]

Evaluating Milk Replacer

Deciding which milk replacer to use can be very challenging. Below are a few key things you should be aware of when making this decision, as not all milk replacers are created equal. The primary nutrients of milk replacer are […]

Calf Feeding Systems

There are two main types of calf feeding systems. These are Individual Feeding and Group Feeding. Two popular methods of group feeding are Automatic Calf Feeders and the Acidified Milk Feeding Program. Each of these methods has pros and cons when considering things […]

Cold Weather Feeding

Cold weather is stressful for calves. Those that are exposed to the cold are predisposed to respiratory tract infections (pneumonia). Appropriate nutrition and a fresh supply of water will do a lot to help them overcome stress. When calves are […]

Mixing Milk Replacer

The most important part of mixing milk replacer is weighing the powder because milk replacer is hygroscopic, which means it absorbs moisture from the environment around it. Therefore, a scoop of milk replacer in the summer is not the same […]

Pasteurization

Pasteurization decreases pathogens in waste milk. Once milk is pasteurized, do not leave it sitting at room temperature as bacteria will continue to grow. Pasteurization of colostrums is not recommended, because it can destroy immunoglobulins. Regular maintenance needs to be […]

Hot Weather

Heat – just like cold – is stressful for calves. Hot weather causes calves to reduce their feed intake, while also increasing their maintenance requirements, due to the energy required to keep cool. This results in a lowered average daily […]

Calf Starter

The purpose of calf starter is to transition the calf from the milk–feeding period to the dry feeding period. Calf starter is very important to healthy rumen development, good body growth and successful weaning of the calf. Calf starter must […]

Waste Milk

Waste milk is milk that is not suitable for the milk tank. This could be excess colostrum, transition milk, milk from cows with mastitis or from animals that have been treated with antibiotics. It should not be fed to calves […]

Weaning

You should have a pre–determined weaning age for your calves. Gradual weaning is recommended over abrupt weaning because it causes the animals less stress. Begin by diluting milk, allowing calves to slowly increase their starter intake. A suggested weaning program […]

Water

Water is an important part of caring for calves. Water improves average daily gain and feed conversion, is very beneficial in the development of the rumen and helps in digestion and the metabolic function of the calf. Calves do not […]

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