Happy New Year and remember VFD | TSLN.com

Happy New Year and remember VFD

Vet's Voice

I hope all of you had a very Merry Christmas and a positive start to your New Year. 2016 wasn't the best year financially for the beef producers. It didn't matter what you had to market, it was not worth as much as previous years. The decline has been erratic but steady all fall. We all regained some positive attitude before the New Year when the cow market finally went up $5 and the slaughter steers went up $4 – $5. The feeder market was also strong given everyone's hope for a recovery. It will be a long time before the market returns to previous highs, but at least we are climbing rather than falling.

The cold weather is causing problems with many of our feedlot cattle. The warm weather and rain early in the month really made the lots muddy. Now the ground became rough after the big freeze and causes injuries to the soft feet of the calves. Many lots are pulling and treating a lot of calves for foot rot. These treatments now require injectable antibiotics because there are no feed grade antibiotics labeled for foot rot.

Histophilus (used to be called Hemophilus) has emerged after the cold snap. We usually see increased cases after severe cold weather. Some veterinarians don't believe it to be a problem, but most of them are from further south. Several feedlots question whether we need to vaccinate for Histophilus. We feel you need to incorporate it into your vaccination program and may need to be boostered if you have losses. The samples we have sent to SDSU appear to be sensitive to most antibiotics, so treatment in usually successful.

Mycoplasm has been a growing problem. We have problems in both feed lot calves, beef and dairy, and cow calf herds. This disease is difficult to treat because the bug has no cell wall and therefore is not affected by antibiotics. The infection becomes chronic and remains in the calf. When anything stresses the calf, the Mycoplasm makes the animal ill or even causes death. The best scenario is to minimize stress. That means make sure the animals always are consuming enough energy to keep them in a positive energy balance while minimizing stress as much as possible. We utilize vaccines to try to prevent infections and carriers. As with all vaccines, they are not 100 percent assurance you will naot have problems, but they are minimized.

New Year's brought us the Veterinary Feed Directives (VFDs). We are attempting to keep this as simple and efficient as possible. You will need to contact your veterinarian before you purchase certain feed grade medication. Your antibiotics dealer will be able to help your veterinarian secure what you need. Cooperation between you, your feed dealer and your veterinarian will help make this another government requirement we can easily handle with very little paperwork.

We all had many reasons to be thankful in 2016. Economically we didn't have the greatest year, but we have plenty to be positive about our future. Careful planning and efficient management will allow us all to work through these times of low equity. Positive attitude and strong work ethics will help us improve our economic situations.

The drugs regulated by the VFD are those deemed to be medically important in humans. Common beef cattle feed grade antibiotics requiring VFD are:

• Chlortetracycline (Aureomycin, CLTC, Penncholor)

• Chortetracycline + Sulfamethazine (Aureo S 700)

• Neomycin + Oxytetracycline (Neo-Terramycin, Ne0-Oxy)

• Oxytertracycline (Terramycin, Pennox)

• Tylosin (Tylan)

• Tilmicosin (Pulmotil)

• Virginiamycin (V-Max)

Common Beef Cattle Feed Additives NOT requiring VFD are:

• Amprolium (Corid)

• Bacitracin (Albac, BMD)

• Bambermycin (GainPro)

• Decoquinate (Deccox)

• Fenbendazole (Safe-Guard)

• Laidlomycin (Cattlyst)

• Lasalocid (Bovetec)

• Melengestrol Acetate (MGA)

• Methoprene (Altosid)

• Monensin (Rumensin)

• Morantel (Rumatel)

• Poloxalene (Bloat Guard)

• Ractopamine (Optaflexx, Actogain)

• Tetraclovinphos (Rabon)

Your veterinarian is legally liable for your use of products used by order of the prescription or the VFD. It is left to the veterinarian to determine whether the veterinary-client-patient relationship (VCPR) is met. You must interact with your veterinarian to make proper usage happen. You are not denied usage of these products, only that you must keep minimal records of purchase and usage. It is good that we demonstrate the industry is using antibiotics responsibly and we are willing to document that usage. It can be as easy or as hard as you and your veterinarian prefer to make it. I do not feel it will be all that difficult if you have a good working relationship with your veterinarian.

Happy New Year!