Bovine respiratory disease (BRD) can challenge any operation. Stay ahead of BRD with these resources.
In the U.S. cattle industry, there are numerous resources available to help manage the variety of BRD factors. While fortunate to have, this broad array of choices and information can sometimes be overwhelming and complicate BRD management decisions.
Managing BRD effectively involves implementing vaccination and treatment protocols, but there is more that can help lay the foundation for success. The following resources — like this cost calculator that can show you how the right treatment can save your operation more — are a great place to start.
Local veterinary and nutritionist professionals.
- There is a big difference in how high-risk 300-pound calves are handled in Florida compared to the same class of cattle in Wyoming, so local professional expertise is a cattle producer’s most valuable resource. Local professionals, who understand the regional and seasonal conditions and type of cattle being managed, can help formulate programs that best minimize health challenges and the impacts of BRD.
- With BRD, it’s crucial to know what you’re dealing with. There are geographic differences in infectious agents and the solutions to address these pathogens may differ. A diagnostic laboratory, with local professional interpretation, can help identify which set of agents are the most relevant and what complications might make BRD more severe and less responsive to typical treatment. This information can guide changes in receiving programs and treatment programs, as well as identify improvements for common prevention and treatment tools to work better.
Comparative vaccines studies.
- Vaccination for common viral and bacterial agents is standard practice to help manage BRD effectively. The reason is BRD prevention is generally far more cost-effective than disease treatment. There are published comparative studies in production settings that can guide choices in vaccination programs to help deliver the highest levels of protection against disease-causing respiratory pathogens. Here are two studies on vaccines to consider:
Treatment comparison chart.
- Even with well-planned vaccination programs and proper management, BRD can’t always be prevented. If you need to treat BRD, there are many treatment choices for veterinarians to recommend, but among these effectiveness is the most important. This comparison chart can help evaluate and compare labels for the right treatment option, including what bacterial pathogens each product treats or controls, duration and withdrawal times and more.
Studies that assess treatment options beyond the label.
- As noted above with vaccines, comparative studies can help guide choices for effective metaphylactic and treatment protocols when BRD treatment is needed. Meta-analysis studies are generally ranked as the least biased, most reliable type of evidence available. Read more about three recent peer-reviewed meta-analysis studies that evaluated and compared the effectiveness of antibiotic products for control and treatment of BRD.
- An assessment of how vaccines and antimicrobials perform on the operation, based on records and professional interpretation, also are important to help manage BRD more effectively. Even comprehensive, well-developed protocols will fail in some cattle, so veterinary and nutritionist advice and evaluation are crucial before making changes when changes are necessary. See how validating treatment response, deads and chronics with thorough records, helps clarify disease, nutritional or other issues to address for this stocker operation.
Articles and videos to stay updated on BRD.
- The more you know about BRD, the more you’ll be able to fight it early in the disease process. Stay current on important BRD management topics with articles and videos from Zoetis, producers and BRD industry experts.
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With BRD, the infectious agent (bacteria or virus) is almost never the entire story. These resources can help in looking beyond just identifying the bacteria or virus — and help more effectively manage BRD.