Latest articles


When the temperature soars, feedlot cattle can suffer

Beef 911: Charges that beta-agonists caused severe lameness prompted a study that found a very different reason for fatigue cattle syndrome

A few years ago cattle in an American feedlot went down during transport to a packing plant and others developed severe lameness. This condition was eventually labelled fatigue cattle syndrome and became a huge animal welfare issue due to the appearance of severely lame, non-ambulatory cattle. Initially beta-agonists were incriminated but numerous studies have essentially […] Read more


Cows herded in to holding pen

Get as much health information as you can when buying cattle

Beef 911: Producers are doing a good job of caring for their cattle but often 
this information is not passed on to buyers

When purchasing or selling livestock, their health status — preventive shots given, deworming, and other relevant information — can be determined by a few simple questions. But these questions are seldom asked in cattle transactions these days. With cattle being of higher value, and often traversing long distances through different geographic areas, this information is […] Read more



Preconditioning is good for the entire cattle industry

Beef 911: There are a multitude of benefits but producers need to be compensated for the extra work and risk

Older producers may remember a preconditioning program implemented by the provincial Agriculture Department in the 1980s. There were criteria for procedures and shots, while veterinarians certified that procedures such as dehorning and castrating were done properly and correct pre-immunization shots were given properly. Two categories of calves (either pre-immunized or pre-immunized and weaned a specific […] Read more


How to prevent parasite resistance to worms and flies

Beef 911: Developing and using good protocols will keep these valuable treatments working for you and your herd

We heard years ago about resistance with fly tags. I believe the first one was called Bovaid and with no other tags on the market, researchers noticed resistance developing after a few years. Soon other companies were making tags with a different family of chemicals in them, so producers could rotate them and not allow […] Read more



We all need to be ever vigilant when it comes to rabies

Beef 911: This fatal disease is very rare, but animal owners and rural residents 
should always be on the lookout for telltale signs

We don’t hear this disease mentioned very often, but when we do there is a very scary connotation attached to it. Rabies is virtually always a fatal disease to all mammals, and zoonotic to humans with no curative treatment once clinical signs develop. Only prevention through vaccination and a strong surveillance program have kept incidence […] Read more


An ounce of prevention is worth 100 pounds

Beef 911: Calves that get sick early in life struggle to catch up with their herdmates 
and are prone to getting ill again


Over the years, many of the effective treatments for bacterial scours and some for pneumonia in newborn calves have been taken away from us. You all remember products such as synergistin, gentomycin and baytril which have either been discontinued or prescribing them is highly frowned on for a number of reasons I won’t get into […] Read more



The facts about the dangers of antibiotic resistance

Beef 911: The cattle industry is doing a good job to prevent resistance and 
we are improving those efforts


There has been volumes written on antibiotic/antimicrobial resistance in the last several years. This article will highlight some of the key points on how well the cattle industry is doing so far and predict what changes veterinarians may make in their recommendations going forward. For those of you who crave more detailed information, there are […] Read more


You can still get good protection by vaccinating very young calves

Beef 911: The label may say it’s not approved for young calves, 
but that doesn’t mean it doesn’t work


There has been a lot of trial work over the years regarding vaccinations of our calves and when would be the most ideal time. Immunologists would debate this but as situations on farms changed and herds got larger, trends changed. Producers no longer boostered vaccines at four to six weeks apart as was often recommended. […] Read more



Calving problems are becoming rare, but be prepared to act

Beef 911: The first key step is to note when the birth process starts and investigate if too much time passes

Numerous articles have been written over the years on how and when to intervene at calving, how to recognize malpresentations, and what to do about them. Producers now see fewer and fewer calving-related problems as our breeding has improved and we select for easy-calving heifers with larger pelvises and moderate birth weight bulls. Ensuring cattle […] Read more


Here’s how to assess the risk when bringing in calves

Beef 911: Mingling animals, transport times, light weights, and even 
weather can be factors that increase the risk of BRD

There are many factors to consider when bringing in calves to feed in order to minimize BRD (bovine respiratory disease), which is still the No. 1 cause of morbidity and often mortality in our feedlots. Knowing the history of the calves regarding weaning time, distance transported, vaccination, and health history — as well as upcoming […] Read more