Latest articles


Well-timed updates on bull scrotal circumference

The third edition of the Bull Breeding Soundness outlines a few changes

The Western Canadian Association of Bovine Practitioners (WCABP) has published a third edition of the Bull Breeding Soundness manual written by Dr. Albert D. Barth, which contains some changes to the accepted minimal scrotal circumference for the different breeds at different ages. The old standard was a few years old so this new version is […] Read more


Peritonitis in cows and its causes

Health: In acute cases, a post mortem is critical to help determine the cause

Peritonitis refers to the inflammation or infection around the peritoneum which is the inside lining of the abdomen. Any infection involving the abdomen receives the nondescript description of peritonitis. This could be an infection around the intestines, stomachs, liver or uterus in cows and heifers. What is most important here is there are many causes […] Read more



Avoid lapses in your vaccination program

Health: A good vaccination strategy goes a long way toward minimizing preventable diseases

As veterinarians and cattle producers we need to constantly review our vaccination protocols to check for lapses in scheduled booster shots or missing antigens in our vaccines in response to new or emerging diseases. Cattle transported to new areas where different diseases are prevalent are often the cause of outbreaks such as redwater disease or […] Read more


BRSV (Bovine Respiratory Syncytial Virus) is a deadly viral cause of pneumonia

Health: Know the signs and what actions you should take if you suspect the virus

I am sure most cattlemen have had the odd diagnosis of BRSV in their herds over the years, either individual animals or outbreaks, generally in cattle under one year of age. BRSV is suspected with pneumonias that do not respond to antibiotics or produce lots of fluids and frothing as well as runny eyes. Temperatures […] Read more



Pre-plan for emergency slaughter

Animal Health: An animal’s suffering should be ended as soon as possible

All producers run into the need for emergency slaughter from time to time to preserve the value of an animal and prevent the waste of good meat protein. By its very nature these are emergency situations so it is important to pre-plan the chain of events that would happen in cases when it becomes necessary. […] Read more


Facts about antimicrobial resistance

While the industry is already doing a good job, there is ongoing room for improvement

There have been volumes written on antimicrobial resistance (AMR) in the last several years. And it is important to remember just how good the Canadian cattle industry is doing in managing AMR and look to future changes veterinarians may make in their recommendations. For those of you craving more detailed information, there have been several […] Read more



Preventing parasite resistance to worms and flies

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


A herd of Black Angus Cattle

Taking aim at dart gun pros and cons

Effective yes, but they need to be used with the proper diagnosis and product

Remote drug delivery (RDD) devices are becoming more common in some modern cow-calf operations. The older-style capture guns used in the past were generally used by veterinarians to tranquilize and “capture” cattle needing further treatment. Tranquilized animals could then be loaded and transported if that was necessary or put in a smaller compound if further […] Read more



Meconium staining of newborn calves is a red flag

This spring think of meconium as an early warning sign of many things

As a veterinarian over the past 35 years I’ve been called many times to assist with difficult calvings or malpresentations that resulted in meconium (first manure) stained calves. The jury is still out on what causes this and what we should do about it. Veterinarians have many opinions on this topic, as it is a […] Read more


Improper cervical dilation at calving

Recognizing when it's happening is your first step

One of the hardest calving dilemmas you or your veterinarian face, is improper cervical dilation. Before expulsion of the fetus the cervix normally relaxes, softens and opens up essentially as wide as the vagina to allow the fetus to enter the vaginal vault. When this does not happen normally, or is delayed, the health of […] Read more