New research indicates that development of the calf’s digestive microbiome early in life can help improve her future health and productive performance in the milking herd. Raising calves requires specific nutritional and health strategies that support optimum immune development, digestive efficiency and nutrient intake at three key periods; the first 14 days, at weaning and transition.
The First Two Weeks of Life
The most important time in the calf’s life is during the first two weeks after birth. Born without a functional immune system, colostrum provides the calf passive immune protection. Passive immunity is optimum when the calf consumes 12% to 15% of her body weight in colostrum within the first 3 hours. Immunity will last up to five days depending on the immunoglobulin concentration and amount of colostrum fed.
Development of Active Immune Function for Long-Term Health BenefitsAbout 24 hours after birth passive immunity begins to decline and by day 5 and the level of protective antibody concentration is low, and the calf is at risk of infection until the active immune system becomes functional about day 14 to 21. This high-risk period is when we often see significant health issues.
The bioactive compounds in RumaCell from Pacer Technology will help support beneficial microbial populations in the intestine supporting gut health which contributes to the development of active immune function.
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