In-feed Chlortetracycline Can Offer Flexible BRD Treatment

Feedlot operators find feed additive solutions effective against bovine respiratory disease (BRD).

For Midwest cattle feeder Ed Greiman, in-feed chlortetracycline has been an important treatment option against bovine respiratory disease (BRD) in starting cattle. He uses the Zoetis product AUREOMYCIN® when BRD pulls start to increase.

Greiman isn’t alone among feedlot operators finding success with this approach. The Veterinary Feed Directive (VFD) has reduced the use of in-feed chlortetracycline, but it remains an important part of a health program, said Tom Peters, PhD, a ruminant nutritionist based in Oregon, Illinois.

“In our covered feeding systems, I work with the consulting veterinarians to pulse with AUREOMYCIN in our starter programs,” Peters said.


Research in high-risk Holstein steer calves provides further evidence that in-feed chlortetracycline makes a positive difference for feedlot operators. A study that took place with 1,700 head of cattle considered the impact of five-day pulsing of chlortetracycline versus feeding oxytetracycline for 14 days. This feedlot had experienced significant challenges with BRD in the past.

The study was comprised of four groups of cattle from the feedlot:

  • DRAXXIN® (tulathromycin) Injectable Solution on arrival, followed by three five-day pulses of AUREOMYCIN as recommended by the attending veterinarian (Days 6-10, 12-16 and 18-22)
  • DRAXXIN on arrival with a therapeutic level of Terramycin® 100 Type A Medicated Feed Article as recommended by the attending veterinarian from Day 10 to Day 23
  • DRAXXIN only on arrival
  • Three five-day pulses of AUREOMYCIN as recommended by the attending veterinarian (Days 6-10, 12-16 and 18-22)

The group receiving pulses of in-feed chlortetracycline following metaphylaxis with DRAXXIN had significantly lower BRD first pulls and total morbidity, as well as the greatest dry matter intake and average daily gain.1


For Greiman, hear how responsible use of antibiotics is top of mind at his Midwest feedlot:

Key thoughts he shares on responsible use:

“We can’t just use antibiotics to use antibiotics,” Greiman said. “We’re using in-feed chlortetracycline when we reach certain thresholds to help keep a problemfrom getting any worse. Animal health and welfare is critical.

“The consumer thinks of beef as being a really good eating experience, so my goal is to always lower the odds of that poor eating experience by making sure healthy cattle are raised here and sent to the processor."

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IMPORTANT SAFETY INFORMATION: DRAXXIN has a pre-slaughter withdrawal time of 18 days in cattle. Do not use in female dairy cattle 20 months of age or older. Do not use in animals known to be hypersensitive to the product. See full Prescribing Information.

Do not use AUREOMYCIN in calves to be processed for veal.

Caution: Federal law restricts medicated feed containing this veterinary feed directive (VFD) drug (AUREOMYCIN and Terramycin) to use by or on the order of a licensed veterinarian.

1 Data on file, Study Report No. 17CRGMFA-01-01, Zoetis Inc.

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