GFM Network News


Beef 911: The goal should always be to produce the healthiest cattle

We need to ditch the notion that high-risk cattle are somehow the most profitable

I’ve heard it said on the feeder side that high-risk cattle are the most profitable. The argument is that when you run the numbers and take into account morbidity, mortality and all other costs, these cattle have the potential to make the most profit at the end of the day. Of course the big factor […] Read more

Simple strategies can help reduce pregnancy loss in cattle

Feed testing, good nutrition, exercise, 
low-stress handling, and biosecurity are 
all beneficial for pregnant cows

The best way to reduce pregnancy losses in pregnant cows is to take a multi-pronged approach. First, it pays to test both feed and water. “It is surprising how much variability in our forages occurs year to year and season to season,” veterinarian Steve Hendrick said during a recent Beef Cattle Research Council webinar. “It […] Read more


Researchers join forces to dig deep into state of Prairie cow herd

The five-year project has researchers collecting hard data on topics 
such as antibiotic use, trace minerals, and Johne’s disease


Cattle in Western Canada tend to be deficient in copper, have a low incidence of Johne’s disease, and cow-calf producers don’t use antibiotics excessively. Those are three of the findings from the cattle health network, a five-year project begun in 2012, and based on the National Animal Health Monitoring System in the U.S. “This year […] Read more

Widespread antibiotic use reduced disease levels in herds but also sent resistance levels soaring.

Antimicrobial resistance in cattle means big changes coming

Resistance crisis even has drug companies calling for producers to change their ways

Multi-drug resistance to disease-causing bacteria is quickly becoming a complete “game changer” that could cripple the cattle industry’s ability to manage common bovine diseases. “We are really slamming into the end of the antibiotic era,” said Dr. Trisha Dowling, a professor of veterinary pharmacology at the Western College of Veterinary Medicine. “I’ve got 24 different […] Read more



Study examines lameness in feedlot cattle and treatment options

Diagnosing the cause of lameness is not easy and so it’s difficult 
to know how to treat the animal or if culling is the best option

Although feedlot pen riders do a good job of identifying lame cattle needing treatment, there has been very little work done to fully understand lameness in that sector. Knowing the types and prevalence of lameness could help to build better ways to treat and prevent it, says Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada researcher Karen Schwartzkopf-Genswein. “We […] Read more


Good record-keeping when treating livestock is a must

Thorough records are vital for showing that farmers are responsible stewards who follow the rules when treating livestock

In spring, cattle that seemed to be doing well all winter often become ill. Warm days and cold nights bring out the chronic conditions that were lying latent in the body. These cattle may or may not respond to medication. Old damage in the lungs or intestines may dominate or there could be resistance to […] Read more