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Problem-free Approaches to Introduce Calf Milk Replacer
Cattle rearing processes and development occur in stages and steps. After parturition, animals feed calves with the first milk called colostrum. After this, the next focus is usually on the growth and development of calf’s immunity. This usually could be achieved via a lot of means, but more prominently, via proper feeding and necessary vaccination. Poor nutrition in the initial days of calves’ growth can transmit into immediate consequences on the development of the calves, especially into a productive dairy cow. Therefore, farmers usually start with a high dosage of calf milk replacer directly after the colostrum. Below are smart but straightforward approaches to introducing calf milk replacers in your farm;

Introducing calf milk replacer
This is usually done after the initial colostrum or perhaps after a few days. Most commonly dairy farmer switches to replacers after the first three days of colostrum. The timing is usually dependent on dairy farmer’s management plan and schedules. Some of them typically switch directly to milk replacers after the colostrum such that the risk of transfers of pathogens from cows to calves is averted. However, other farmers continue to feed colostrum on days two and three because it is believed that colostrum is rich in nutrients and contributes immensely to calves’ intestinal health.
These two systems have their different advantages. While one focus on the limitation of disease transmission, the other focuses on calves’ immunity. The method to use now depends on the health status as well as other specific farm aspects of individual farms.
Mixing Calf Milk Replacer with Colostrum or introducing 100 percent calf milk Replacer Directly
The manner in which farmers switch from colostrum to calf milk replacer could vary as said earlier. While some farmers immediately enter calf milk replacers 100 percent, some prefer to mix 1 or more calf milk feeds through the colostrum. Introducing calf milk replacers directly is usually an excellent approach, but could be problematic if calf milk replacers are not mixed with colostrum in the correct concentration.
Maintaining a steady liter volume
It is imperative to increase calf’s feed volume on the day of switching. After feeding calves with three liters of colostrum two times, do the same for calf milk replacer. Ensure that the calf milk replacer is 150 grams per liter during the first week. This method will undoubtedly allow the calf to continue to grow. The intestinal tract of calves are also filled and becomes stronger every day.
Rearing bucket best solution at the start of times
It is advisable to feed via a teat in the first few days. Milk is directly transferred to the fourth stomach via sucking motion and saliva. This helps the milk to be digested evenly and comprehensively, thus resulting in incredible calf’s growth and development.
Prioritize hygiene


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Like most domestic animals, calves are usually susceptible to cleanliness and the slightest of fluctuations in them in the first days of their lives. To avoid losing them to death, it is then imperative to ensure that each milk fed to them are freshly and cleanly prepared. Every equipment in use must be cleanly prepared and stored after each feeding. Milk is also to be ready in a clean, orderly and consistent manner.
Feed only milk in the first week of calves’ life
When you feed calves with the only dairy in the early stages of their lives, you tend to avert many problems. Stay away from pellets and muesli as much as possible until after the first five days. After then, the calves could be fed a handful of calf pellet. However, when you are feeding calves with pellets, ensure that they are dust free and taste well. Also, try to replenish the calf pellets at least once in a day. When you feed your calves sufficient milk in their first week, they will require little or no concentrated feeds, and so that will be by no means be a problem.
There might be no need to feed your calves with muesli. Although it looks so healthy and it is tasty, it has a little deficiency in that calves tend to eat from a lot of it, and this will cause digestion problems so early in their lives, thus increasing their risk of diarrhea.
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Nothing can be substituted for good nutrition in animal rearing. It is important in all stages of animal growth but most especially should be prioritized in the early days of calves until weaning period. As a dairy farmer, you have got only a chance to prepare your calves, initiate their immunity and ensure growth and development through good nutrition plan. When you feed calves well in their early days, they develop a good gastro-intestinal system, organs and under the tissue. Optimum growth is also ensured right from day one to prevent disease pauses in their development through weaning. Good nutrition maximizes calves’ growth potential by taking full advantage of their genetic possible at a later stage.
With these smart and straightforward steps, you have got to introduce calf milk replacers to your calves without encountering problems in the situation.

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