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  #1  
Old 04/18/09, 02:03 PM
 
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Shipping Fever

Well, don't know how I do this to my self, but the heifer calf I bought last Monday night came home with shipping fever. Any way the jury is still out as to her breed (see thread, Bop, what is she) As far as I can tell she is about 8 days old. she weighs 80 LBs. Her eyes drip very clear tears, she has a great amount of sometimes yellow some times white sometimes green mucus coming from her nose. Not constantly, but a few times a day a big hunk will come out. She started going down hill Tuesday morning, not wanting to drink her milk. Now she is wobbly on her feet although she will get up and stand around for awhile many times a day. She has diarrhea real bad. The worst part is that she infected my 9 month old Jersey Holstein heifer. She wont eat much, but drinks a little water. I am most concerned about her, she is a big investment of time, love, and money! So for treatment.... I went to the vet on tuesday and told them the symptoms. They said just keep an eye on them (symptoms not to bad at that point) so I came home with electrolytes and a shot of Sel/Vit E. Wednesday morning at the vet again, got a shot of Nuflor for both of them. SubQ, so its supposed to last five days, they say. I have been tubing the calf, is there something else I can do? I dosed her with some pepto this morning, and since she seems slightly dehydrated I tubed her with electrolytes that contain live probiotics and lots of glucose. The older heifer is very mopy, but her mucus seems to be clearing, but she has stared to cough. This is all driving me nuts, I sure would be grateful for some advice, thanks.

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  #2  
Old 04/18/09, 02:56 PM
 
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O.k. So does/can shipping fever kill cows? I have treated it in my horses, and though it was an aggravation, I was not real worried that it would kill one of them. Are cattle more susceptible to it? I know that it along with scours could easily kill the bottle calf, but how about a big robust almost yearling? Just wondering how worried I should be. I have been watching for it to turn into pneumonia, but no signs of it yet. I just don’t "feel" like giving them one shot was enough!

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  #3  
Old 04/18/09, 03:21 PM
 
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Ok you gave them teh nuflur on wensday. So, it slowed down the shipping fever/pnemonia a bit. I still have not heard a good diffence between shipping fever and pneumonia. Now you need to hit them harder this time. Go back to the vet and get Draxxin for them. Its alot more expenive but it works where nuflur does not cut it. Also at this point with thelittle one I would also get her on bactrum/ sulfamethazine tablets. You want her to get the sulfa faster then one using Sustain III tablets. With the big heifer you will get away with useing Sustain III pils on her.
What happend you introduced a new strain of pneumoina to your heifer you have there already.
Bob

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Old 04/18/09, 03:37 PM
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Bulldog: I know I'm not much help, but the next time you buy a sale barn calf give it a dose of real anti-biotics such as Nuflur no matter how healthy it look in the auction ring. Consider all sale barn calves sick upon purchase. Plus always disinfect your boots after you leave the sale barn...Hope all turns out well, listen to Bob's advice in post #3...Topside

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  #5  
Old 04/18/09, 04:51 PM
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Madsaw, pnuemonia and shipping fever are really grouped into one disease called BRD or Bovine Respiratory Disease. That's why you don't see much of a difference.

Yes shipping fever/pnuemonia can kill. That's why we can't just leave it to wait for the symptoms to reside and wait for the animal to get better, because there's a high chance that we may lose the animal. We've lost yearlings to pneumonia before. And I agree with the fact that you introduced a new strain of bacteria to that other heifer from the purchase of the new one.

In addition to Madsaw's post, DO NOT stop treatment as soon as they start showing signs of improvement (eating, more active, etc.). You have to keep with the treatment a few days afterward otherwise you will have a relapse and that relapse could cost the life of either the new heifer or your older one. Or both.

Draxxin I'm not familiar with, since it is a fairly new drug, but we've used Micotil and Nuflor, and I highly recommend Nuflor over Micotil. However, if what Madsaw says is correct about Draxxin, then that would be the best one to hit her with to get rid of this illness. You're doing right too with the electrolytes and probiotics.

Good luck!

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  #6  
Old 04/18/09, 05:59 PM
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For future reference I give each of my sale barn calves 5cc of Baytril each. Plus they are given a shot of Bovi-shield Gold. Like I mentioned earlier all calves get shots no matter their appearance...Keep in touch, but do read about BRD it's the most common disease associated with sale barn animals...topside

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  #7  
Old 04/18/09, 06:15 PM
 
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Karen,
Draxxin is much like Micotil, but alot safer. I still use Micotil also. Its just many do not want to due to the safety precautions of it. The steps I use now are Nuflur, then Draxxin then if all else fails Micotil. Like I said in the other post with these drugs I use a sulfa based drug too.
I agree with Topside. Assume any calf from teh sale barn as being sick. Treat it the moment you load it. If all possible buy from a good farm that cares for what he is doing. I rember one lady getting a claf on here that at 3 days old the farmer sold it no matter what. Their reason the milk needed to go to the tank. Well I hate to say it for what it takes to feed a calf till its a week old sure does not hurt the amount of milk you sell. Its makes for a much healthier calf being sold.
Good Luck with your calf
Bob

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  #8  
Old 04/18/09, 06:41 PM
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Ditto!

Quote:
Originally Posted by topside1 View Post
For future reference I give each of my sale barn calves 5cc of Baytril each. Plus they are given a shot of Bovi-shield Gold. Like I mentioned earlier all calves get shots no matter their appearance...Keep in touch, but do read about BRD it's the most common disease associated with sale barn animals...topside
I'm with what Topside1 said. I assume all are sick in the ring. The get 3-5cc of Baytril before they get in the trailor and at first sign of any probs. they get Nuflor or Excede.
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  #9  
Old 04/19/09, 02:04 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Madsaw View Post
Karen,
Draxxin is much like Micotil, but alot safer. I still use Micotil also. Its just many do not want to due to the safety precautions of it. The steps I use now are Nuflur, then Draxxin then if all else fails Micotil. Like I said in the other post with these drugs I use a sulfa based drug too.

Bob
Just for a little comparison, what we did in the past was use Micotil, and it had its successes for a while for the first herd. But when the second herd came in (first one sold to feedlot), we used the Micotil on them again but it didn't work; none of the shipping fever/pneumonia symptoms were clearing up. So I did a bit of researching on the vet sites and found that Micotil only hits one strain out of the four major bacteria that are responsible for BRD. I found that both Nuflor and Draxxin hit all four. Since Nuflor was less expensive than Draxxin, it was the one to use. (Mainly because we were dealing with 5 month old calves, not calves as young as Bo here.) I think its mainly the expense more than the safety precautions of Draxxin than anything...but yeah, I guess it is all down to what you choose, or what's available.

Edit: Baytril is another one that I haven't used before but have heard it is just as effective.
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Old 04/19/09, 08:28 AM
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How's the calf today? Topside

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  #11  
Old 04/19/09, 11:01 AM
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Shipping fever has four main viral diseases associated with it. They are BVD, IBR, PI3, and BRSV. You cant treat these because they are viral and antibiotics don't work on viruses. So when you treat you calf your treating for a secondary bacterial infection. The three main bacteria are Haemophilus Somnus, Pasteurella hemolytica, and Pasteurella multocida. I understand your sale barn calf brought this in but that is why you should quarantine all new animals. In the future start vaccinating your herd against the four major respiratory diseases. Also you want to continue to give fluids and electrolytes to them. Other diseases you might want to vaccinate for are leptospirosis and vibriosis they are common cow STD's that can cause big problems.

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  #12  
Old 04/19/09, 12:48 PM
 
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Well, they both got a shot of Draxxin today, still having to tube the little one. So hopefully they will be on the mend soon! The older heifer seems a bit better today. And I was wondering, I know that in horses shipping fever is pretty much a once and done thing, like chicken pox in people, is it the same for cattle as well? Thanks

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  #13  
Old 04/19/09, 01:50 PM
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Bulldog, yes it can be a once and done thing...depending on your method of treatment they shouldn't have a relapse again. Although, sometimes a calf can come back with pneumonia again in a few weeks to a few months, depending on the environmental conditions.

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  #14  
Old 04/20/09, 08:25 AM
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Your cattle can get shipping fever again because there are 4 viruses and 3 bacteria so your cattle get 1 virus and 1 bacteria. They get over them and gain antibodies to that virus. But there are 3 viruses that they have not built antibodies to. This is why you should get one of the 7 or 9 way vaccines that covers all four of the viruses and other stuff. You dont have to worry about the bacteria as much because it normally is at its worst after a virus hits. Pneumonia is not caused by one bacteria or virus. Pneumonia is a term that means infection in the lungs. This can be caused by many things, not just shipping fever.

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Old 04/20/09, 07:25 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cur huntin' kid View Post
Your cattle can get shipping fever again because there are 4 viruses and 3 bacteria so your cattle get 1 virus and 1 bacteria. They get over them and gain antibodies to that virus. But there are 3 viruses that they have not built antibodies to. This is why you should get one of the 7 or 9 way vaccines that covers all four of the viruses and other stuff.
I dunno about you but you've got me confused here. From what I have learned, shipping fever pneumonia can occur through one or two strains of bacteria and a virus doesn't necessarily have to hit right after the bacterial infection has occurred. However, viral infections can occur right after or right before a bacterial infection, or happen all on its own; and it can be any of the 4 listed. But I think you mean that in most cases, the primary infection happens to be bacterial, then afterwards if treatment wasn't followed through properly or the calves were put through some form of stress again a viral infection could come in and make things more serious. Sure a vaccination program can work, but these vaccines only hit the "easy viruses" and not the ones that can become super-bugs and are able to fend off the antibodies, B cells, T cells and immunoglobulins at the same time infecting the host. Not that I'm against vaccinating against these 4 respiratory infections, its just becoming reality.

Quote:
You dont have to worry about the bacteria as much because it normally is at its worst after a virus hits. Pneumonia is not caused by one bacteria or virus. Pneumonia is a term that means infection in the lungs. This can be caused by many things, not just shipping fever.
As for your first sentence, how can you not worry about the bacteria as much after a virus comes in? What if the bacteria has done more damage than you want and are trying to treat that even before the virus comes in? Bacterial infections release toxins (exotoxins and endotoxins) which can result in cell death/organ failure/host death if not treated or if the animal doesn't have the immunity it needs (thus the treatment). This can happen without the help of a viral infection coming in. And like I said, viral infections can happen before a bacterial infection as well.

BRD aka pneumonia is primarily caused by stress and dust in a feedlot environment. Bacteria and viruses live in the dust and is most likely to enter the host when its immune system is at its lowest level i.e. stress. Plain and simple. That's why I say its also to do with its environment, and I don't mean physical environment like vegetation, soil and air and water, but social and psychological also. Plain and simple. However there is a less of a risk for the calves to relapse from BRD into BVRD if treatment is followed correctly, and also if stress levels are low and they are in a clean pen/paddock with clean straw.

Not trying to start a fight, its just somethings I had to mention and point out.
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Old 04/21/09, 07:47 PM
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Sorry, for the confusion Karin L. What normally happens is stress occurs they get one of the four viruses, the immune system is then weakened. The bacteria then moves in because the animal cant fend it off while fighting the virus. Animal gets very sick from both virus and bacteria. You give antibiotics to treat the secondary bacterial infection. If you vaccinate for the viruses then you lower the chances of your animals getting them. Yes, sometimes your animals will get sick but your chances are better. Pneumonia is a common term meaning infection in the lungs, it is not a disease.
This is all coming right out of my notes from my livestock health class, that i just finished about a month ago. I am a student at The Ohio State University Agricultural Technical Institute. The man that taught the class is a DR. So if this information is incorrect sorry just trying to pass on what I was taught.

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Old 04/21/09, 08:19 PM
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As we all know we are giving out free advice. Nearly every health related thread contains mostly good advice and a tad bit of bad advice. Lots of folks don't have a Vet in their area. Others don't have the available funds to afford a Vet. Some just want to learn from their mistakes. Most of you smart folks usually confuse me, so I find it valuable to follow up on advice given with google and books. This is one great forum never hesitate to give advice or fact, but it's still the owners responsibility to verify free advice...Enough said,,,,Have a good Evening,,,,Topside

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Old 04/22/09, 12:02 AM
 
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Kid,
I have a good brain teaser for your DR. Lets say you vaccinate for blackleg with a dead vaccine. I think it was the more widely used one on the market. Now toss in a missplaced injection by a sloppy vet. The injection was low in the neck region from the front toward the aterey located between the leg and brisket area.
Step ahead to the next morn finding a 300 lbs jersey cross heifer near death due to blackleg. Cocindence or what? All steps was tryed to save the heifer but she died a hr or 2 later. So the now you have the back ground heres teh question. Will a misplaced injection of a dead blackleg vaccine cause a full blown case of blackleg in less then 24 hrs?
I also found another calf with syptoms of blackleg and treated it with high does of penncillin the next day. This calf lived but was very stiff and slow for 2 days.
Bob

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Old 04/22/09, 05:16 PM
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Originally Posted by cur huntin' kid View Post
Sorry, for the confusion Karin L. What normally happens is stress occurs they get one of the four viruses, the immune system is then weakened. The bacteria then moves in because the animal cant fend it off while fighting the virus. Animal gets very sick from both virus and bacteria. You give antibiotics to treat the secondary bacterial infection. If you vaccinate for the viruses then you lower the chances of your animals getting them. Yes, sometimes your animals will get sick but your chances are better. Pneumonia is a common term meaning infection in the lungs, it is not a disease.
This is all coming right out of my notes from my livestock health class, that i just finished about a month ago. I am a student at The Ohio State University Agricultural Technical Institute. The man that taught the class is a DR. So if this information is incorrect sorry just trying to pass on what I was taught.
I don't think I was implying that your information was incorrect, I guess I was just trying to figure out what you were saying by how I thought it out. But yes it does make sense to have both the bacteria and virus, or more than one of either.
I had just finished my Animal Health class not more than a few weeks ago (finished the final exam yesterday), at the U of Alberta, and the prof is a doc as well, he was a vet for cow-calf in saskatchewan if I'm not mistaken. I've got no hard feelings for what you said, was just trying to figure out what u said from what i learned. okay?
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Old 04/25/09, 01:23 AM
 
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Don't know alot of details, but let me offer a big picture.

I'm not sure why anybody would buy a young calf at a sale barn. At just days old, it could be toast if it did not get colostrum and is exposed to bugs while mingling with others. Antibodies from the mother are critical and not much else will help if it didn't get them. Antibiotics are to help the immune system, not replace it.

I don't like the sound of automatically giving salebarn calves antibiotics. First, there is a big concern about overuse of antibiotics and causing resistance and superbugs. Someday it might be your child needing an antibiotic that won't work because we've overused them. Second, I have a problem using drugs to compensate for poor management. We should not intentionally put animals in a situation that will increase their likelihood of getting sick.

The real cause of disease is often poor management or husbandry which causes stress. Stress comes in many forms. First there is psychological stress (fear) experienced when an animal is shipped and ran around, poked and prodded, and their feed and surroundings changed. When an animal is fearful, cortisol is released from the adrenal glands. This hormone suppresses the immune system, increasing the odds of illness. Then there is nutritional stress when transported and moved around - lack of water, energy and protein needed to support proper immunity. You can't make antibodies out of nothing. Vaccines are often given to cattle when under significant stress (entering feedlots), but under those conditions they are less effective when the immune system isn't working well.

So, we suppress immunity, while at the same time we run them through the ring or mingle with many other cattle so they can get exposed to more viruses and bacteria. Not a good combination. I'm surprised alot of our practices are actually legal.

Best to keep them on the farm, ensure colostrum intake, vaccinate them when older and not under stress. I would buy older calves straight from a farm, transporting as calmly as possible. And keep the number of fears to a minimum. Don't change everything at once. Stay away from them as much as possible till they get used to the place. Buy a few at a time so they can have the comfort of a herd......

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