Potential animal health issues, tasks to consider and reminders for December and January include...
- Book in early pregnancy scanning, ideally six weeks after end of artificial insemination.
- Clinical mastitis - monitor cows and be aware of rising bulk milk somatic cell count) particularly if using relief milkers over the holiday period.
- Continue weaner management - drench regularly, weigh to monitor growth rates, consider the need for trace mineral supplementation and ensure adequate nutrition.
- Facial eczema season may begin early so, weather depending, plan to start preventative zinc treatment in January.
- Once we get some summer sun lameness may become an issue as the land hardens so monitor cows daily. Hot, dry, dusty weather can increase the incidence of some diseases such as pink eye - monitor for early signs of discharge from, or white spots on, eye(s) and act quickly to separate from the mob and treat.
Sheep and Beef
- Weaning management - monitor ewe body condition and check udders, ensure adequate parasite and fly strike control and consider vitamin B12 testing in lambs.
- Barbers pole - monitor for signs of disease (pale gums, depressed, exercise intolerant, increased breathing) and drench appropriately.
- Ram preparations - book in ram palpations, Brucellosis testing and organise teasers.
- Monitor hinds regularly during fawning.
- Stag preparations - ensure palpations are done and feet checked prior to mating.
- Maintain sport horses on joint supplements such as NV Halo Injection or EquinateTM injection if the ground is hard.
- Consider use of electrolytes for horses in heavy work particularly in hot weather and know the early signs of tying up.
Lastly, we wish you a fantastic holiday period...
Have a safe, enjoyable, very well-earned break with family and friends!