Neosporosis – why we should keep dogs away from the cattle shed

As cattle move indoors at this time of year, discusses the risk of neosporosis and reminds farmers to keep their dogs away from the feeding passage.

Fodder is, of course, a matter of much concern to farmers at this time of year. We worry about how much of it we have, its quality, and whether there are any affordable alternatives to the standard mix of silage and concentrates. These are, of course, important and legitimate topics and I will return to them at a later date. For now, though, I want to discuss an issue that receives far too little attention in the farming community. This is the danger that pregnant cattle will contract neosporosis from fodder during the housing season.

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Lameness in Cattle: Prevention and Treatment discusses bovine lameness and outlines some important measures that farmers can take to prevent and treat it.

A serious problem, and not just for dairy men

Winter is always a dangerous time for the contraction and spread of the infections that cause bovine lameness. Cramped housing conditions provide a perfect environment for digital disease to thrive, and we shouldn’t underestimate how much of a problem this can become. Nor should we think that this scourge is a problem for the dairy man only.

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Silent Killer: Grass Tetany and How to Prevent It discusses the danger of grass tetany in the weeks running up to housing, and offers some advice on the best way to prevent and treat it.

Aftergrass – a hotbed for tetany

As the grazing season draws to a close, suckler farmers should keep a closer-than-usual eye on their stock. Animals will be housed in the next few weeks, but until then the risk of grass tetany is very high. Tetany is one of the biggest cattle killers on Irish suckler farms, and it usually occurs on heavy, low-fibre paddocks. If you put animals out on aftergrass in the last few weeks, you should be particularly vigilant. Cows recently weaned of their calves are most at risk of succumbing to tetany.  

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