GFM Network News


A case of acute BVD in a calf. BVD can cause symptoms ranging from nasal discharge to birth defects, as well as diarrhea.  Photo: Supplied by Dr. John Campbell

BVD still a threat to Canadian cattle herds

Even closed herds can be at risk for BVD, making vaccination key to preventing this disease

Bovine viral diarrhea (BVD) can affect cattle in many ways, causing abortion, birth defects, stillborn calves, immune deficiencies in persistently infected animals, and other acute or chronic illness. BVD is also an indirect cause of many other diseases because it has adverse effects on the immune system. An estimate a few years ago suggested that […] Read more

Dr. Diego Moya and his colleagues found that using lidocaine in addition to meloxicam during castration may control pain better than meloxicam alone.

Lidocaine shows promise in mitigating castration pain

Two ongoing projects highlight the potential of using this anaesthetic during processing

Producers may have another option to offset castration pain in calves in the future, thanks to work underway in Western Canada. Early results from a University of Saskatchewan study suggest using lidocaine in addition to meloxicam during castration may control pain better than meloxicam alone. Dr. Diego Moya, assistant professor at the Western College of […] Read more


Where are we at with antimicrobial resistance?

Vet Advice with Dr. Ron Clarke

Antimicrobial resistance (AMR), often incorrectly labelled antibiotic resistance, has been the subject of immeasurable media attention through the past three decades. It’s a relentless rabble of potential health threats, what and who is to blame, and where do we go from here. AMR has spawned at least two generations, maybe three, of academic scrutiny, dissection, […] Read more

Use a cooler with ice or heat packs to keep vaccines at the right temperature.

Make vaccinations work for your cattle herd

When giving a shot, make sure it isn’t a shot in the dark

As ranchers begin another calving season and vets stock their shelves with vaccines and supplies, now is the time to review vaccination protocols and management practices to make sure the herd is protected. Dr. Glen Griffin of South West Animal Health Centre in Swift Current, Sask., has been serving the southwest since 2004, when he […] Read more


Universities can adapt to COVID-19, UCVM dean says

As administrators and faculty modify the system, dean calls for renewed public focus on food production and distribution

As COVID-19 pushes universities to change the way they teach, carry out research and conduct clinical work, the dean of veterinary medicine at the University of Calgary is confident that they can adapt. The academic system “from coast to coast is very intact,” Dr. Baljit Singh said. “We will continue to develop new technologies. We […] Read more

Abscessed livers with A+ scores such as this one are condemned.

Cutting time on tylosin

Researchers looked at whether feeding tylosin for a shorter period affects antimicrobial resistance, along with liver abscesses, health and growth of feedlot cattle

Liver abscesses in cattle have been extensively studied for the last 70 years. Yet condemned or discounted livers due to abscesses still cost the Canadian beef industry over $60 million per year. Tylosin, a member of the macrolide family of antimicrobials, is widely used in beef cattle and is administered through the diet to reduce […] Read more


It’s important to keep in mind that animals don’t have to be completely parasite-free to be healthy and productive.

Managing resistance to internal parasites in cattle

Producers need to tailor parasite control to align with their herds and management systems

Managing internal parasite resistance starts with asking the right questions and understanding the principles of antiparasitic resistance and the range of control products. From there, a producer needs to develop a deworming strategy and pin it to the spring and summer grazing calendar. A veterinarian can help. Antiparasitic resistance is typically defined as the genetic […] Read more

New vaccine will stop the spread of bovine TB

Scientists at the University of Surrey have developed a novel vaccine and complementary skin test to protect cattle against bovine tuberculosis (bovine TB). Publishing their findings in the journal Scientific Reports, researchers reveal they have for the first time created a vaccine that is compatible with a synthetic form of the tuberculin skin test (PPD), a […] Read more


A Styrofoam cooler with heat or cold packs is a simple piece of equipment that keeps vaccine at the right temperature.

Keep syringes and needles clean and working during vaccination

Make sure you protect your vaccine’s effectiveness with a few practical steps

Getting the most out of a vaccine starts with the syringes and needles. Dr. Cody Creelman, a bovine veterinarian in southern Alberta, recently held a free webinar on ways to make cattle vaccines more effective. Part of his webinar covered how to keep needles and syringes clean and working well. Creelman recommends checking and replacing […] Read more

The first phase would see successful small businesses get up to $150,000 to refine their research.

Canadian Food Inspection Agency seeks proposals for vaccine matching

Research: News Roundup from the September 30, 2019 issue of Canadian Cattlemen

The Canadian Food Inspection Agency (CFIA) seeks proposals from small businesses on developing a computer model that predicts which vaccine strain would best control foot-and-mouth disease outbreaks in cattle, sheep and swine. Foot-and-mouth is highly contagious, making it a serious threat to the agriculture industry. Viral strains can be stored in vaccine banks, but right […] Read more