Keeping calfie happy and sleek

You don’t want your pet calf coming down with scours.  Sally Moore from Global Veterinary Services offers advice.

Scours are loose bowel movements and are caused by nutrition or infection.

In the first case the scours look pale yellow or white and the pet will usually be happy in themselves. Overfeeding and feeding the milk at the wrong temperature are often the reason.

The second cause is from the pet animal being infected by a microscopic bug. Often the scour will be brown, bright yellow, clotted and may have blood in it, as well as smelling revolting.

The pet can become very sick very quickly and be contagious to other animals, including us humans. Isolate this pet as soon as possible. If required the laboratory can be used to find out what bug or bugs are the culprit. Wearing gloves, collect a small sample of the scour.

It is of upmost importance to rehydrate all scouring animals using an electrolyte solution made up in water. Treat two to three times daily for at least two to three days on top of the normal feeding regimes for that pet.

It the pet is sick as well as scouring- depressed and won’t stand – then you need to seek veterinary help.

To complicate things some pets get bloated when they scour as their normal digestive tract is messed up and as a result gas builds up. These animals can get seriously distressed and need veterinary help plus sometimes benefit from altering their feeds to include natural yoghurt to restore the digestive tract to normal health.

Call your vet for advice if in doubt.

  • Next week some long bacterial names to learn and what vaccines protect out pets from these pesky bugs.
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Number 8 Network - a community website for the rural areas northeast of Hamilton, NZ, is run by Gordonton journalist/editor Annette Taylor.

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